Get the best brainstorming, researching, writing, and editing tools
Whether you’re wanting to weave together a jumble of ideas, fix split infinitives, or nail down that hard-to-think-of word, there are plenty of writing apps that will help you. But vetting those tools and determining which fit best along with your writing style takes some time.
That is why we’ve done the lifting that is heavy you. The following 15 writing tools help you brainstorm, research, write, and edit better and faster—and they are all free to use.
Tools for Brainstorming and Organizing Your Thoughts
Sometimes, the part that is hardest of writing is finding out what you need to write about. In other cases, you know just what you intend to write about, but your thinking are too disorganized to maneuver forward. If you should be struggling with either issue, these tools can help you brainstorm and organize your ideas, getting them from your head and on the screen.
MindMeister (Web, iOS, Android)
Best free writing software for expanding your thinking
Mind mapping is a brainstorming that is great for all types of writing projects. Whether you are capturing thoughts for a term paper or thesis, putting together an outline for a blog that is long or ebook, or picking out ideas for a unique novel or book series, mind mapping can help you capture your ideas and brainstorm new ones by triggering associations.
Even though a mind could be created by you map written down or a whiteboard, MindMeister offers more flexibility. MindMeister is a tool designed specifically which will make mind mapping easier, giving writers a simple way to capture their ideas, organize them, and share them with others.
No matter how big your mind map gets, MindMeister expands to give you just as much room as you need. Capture all of your ideas in a file that is single rearrange and organize your thinking by dragging and dropping them, and connect ideas no matter what far apart these are generally in your thoughts map. With reasonably limited plan, you may also attach related files and images to reference later.
MindMeister Pricing: Free for approximately three mind maps; from $4.99/month for the Personal plan that includes mind that is unlimited and file attachments.
Would you like to find out more about mind mapping? Check out our mind mapping tutorial, or discover nine ways to use mind maps to jumpstart your projects.
WorkFlowy (Web, macOS, Windows, Chrome, iOS, Android)
Best free writing software for creating outlines that are content
Well-structured writing starts with a well-structured outline. WorkFlowy makes outlining straightforward: the app enables you to quickly create an organized summary of any writing project and all sorts of of the parts bullet that is using and nested lists.
Focus on the broad strokes—section names, big ideas, themes—and nest related details and research beneath those bullets. WorkFlowy also provides hashtag-based tagging and search features, which means you don’t have to concern yourself with creating too many lists or letting bullet points run wild.
You are able to zoom in on any list by clicking on the corresponding bullet point. Plus, if you hover over a bullet point, you will see choices to complete, add an email to, share, export, duplicate, or delete that item. Use the Complete option to tick off chapters of your outline them, or drag and drop bulleted lists to organize your outline into logical sections as you finish writing.
WorkFlowy Pricing: Free for up to 250 list items every month; from $4.99/month when it comes to WorkFlowy Pro plan that includes unlimited lists and items and customization options.
If WorkFlowy is not best for your needs, check our guide out into the best outlining tools—many of which may have free plans—to find the best app for your needs.
HubSpot Blog Ideas Generator (Web)
Best free writing software for brainstorming ideas
You want to write about but need to expand your ideas, mind mapping helps if you have a general idea of what. When you have lots of ideas but need certainly to organize them, outlining helps. Exactly what about when you really need to create something but don’t have any idea things to come up with?
For the reason that scenario, HubSpot Blog Ideas Generator helps. Enter up to five nouns in to the generator, and it produces titles for five blog posts (or 250 if you are ready to provide email address). Whilst the titles it suggests are somewhat formulaic, it can provide ideas for unique angles you can easily take with your piece.
For example, say you know you want to write about conferences but aren’t sure what you would like to state about them. Enter conferences into the Blog Ideas Generator, and you’ll get suggestions like “Conferences: Expectations vs. Reality,” “The second Big Thing in Conferences,” and “This Week’s Top Stories About Conferences.”
You are able to take those suggestions and run through them to try and trigger other ideas for topics and angles you’re interested in writing about with them, or read.
HubSpot Blog Ideas Generator Pricing: Free
If you try these tools as they are still looking at a blank page, take a look at some of well known writing tips for generating ideas and overcoming writer’s block.
Once you have an interest in your mind, it’s time to conduct your research and compile your notes. Whether you will need to transcribe an interview, access paywalled research papers, or see just what else happens to be published online, these tools can help.
Evernote (Web, macOS, Windows, Chrome, iOS, Android)
Best free writing software for compiling research
You could compile notes for your content by taking screenshots for the research you want to include and pasting those screenshots in a Google Doc, scribbling down handwritten notes in a notebook, or creating a custom a number of bookmarks. But each one of these options are hard and time-consuming to look. Evernote provides an easier option.
Using Evernote’s web clipper, you can easily capture articles that are full in a couple of clicks. The articles are then added to Evernote where you are able to organize collected research into different notebooks, read the full-text of articles you have saved, search all your collected research at once, and share your collected research with other people. Plus, you are able to automate your note taking with Evernote’s Zapier integrations.
With Evernote’s premium plan, you should use its mobile app to scan in handwritten notes, pages of books, and business cards. Scanned documents will also be searchable, making it simple to find what you’re hunting for regardless of its format. This makes it a good location to keep things you may have to reference within the
Evernote Pricing: Free for up to 60MB uploads monthly, 25MB maximum note size, and Evernote apps on up to two devices; from $7.99/month when it comes to app that is mobile, searchable PDFs, higher upload and note-size limits, and Evernote apps on unlimited devices.
If Evernote is not suitable for your needs, find an alternative solution in our help guide to the note that is best taking apps.
Unpaywall (Chrome, Firefox)
Best free writing software for finding free copies of paywalled research
You conducted a Google search and found an outcome for an investigation paper or article that seems like it has exactly the data you will need to cite. Unfortunately, you can’t write my essay read it because the site you landed on wants you to definitely pay a fee to access the version that is full-text.
Rather than shelling out to see a paper that could or might not have the information and knowledge you will need, use Unpaywall’s Chrome and Firefox extensions to see if there is a copy that is free of paper available anywhere online. It to open a free copy of the paper when you land on a result for a paywalled paper or article that’s available for free elsewhere, a green unlocked icon displays; click.
Unpaywall harvests data from sources like journals’ open-access repositories and university and government databases, ensuring you are never copyright that is infringing you access a paywalled article 100% free.
Unpaywall does not work properly on everything—for example, it won’t allow you to get beyond the paywall in your favorite news site—but if you wish to reference paywalled scholarly articles every so often, it really is absolutely worth installing to save lots of yourself a while and money.
Unpaywall Pricing: Free
Best free writing software for transcribing video and interview content
If section of your writing process consists of transcribing audio or video interviews or content, oTranscribe removes some of the more time-consuming areas of the method by putting your audio controls and word processor on a screen that is single. Simply upload your audio or video file, press play, and begin typing your transcription on the blank page.
This removes every one of the back-and-forth of playing audio within one typing and app in another. Plus, keyboard controls let you play and easily pause the audio by tapping the Esc key. Other controls let you