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30 essential digital tools, apps, & resources for every writer

From initial inspiration to final revisions, these tools will help you up your writing game this year.

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Creativity & inspiration

This Word Does Not Exist

Refresh this page to see a brand-new word invented by AI, complete with a full definition and sample sentence. The results are fun but also surprisingly inspiring: Why not write an adventure story about a run-in with kleptopods, the site’s fictional word for “a terrestrial marsupial that readily collects water and stores it in the pupal stage,” or a yimba, “a small brown shark, with a reddish body and no tail?” Could the antagonist of your story be a proudhonir, or “a person, especially a male one, convicted of treason or numerous other offenses?”



This free site has a wealth of generative writing prompts, including Random First Line, Random Dialogue, and Town Name Generator. “Take Three Nouns” is especially helpful for freewrites: The site selects three nouns at random (“fear, rope, pipe;” “death, cave, doll;” “disappointment, cheese, clock”) for writers to use as a jumping point for a work of fiction.



Brainsparker is a block-busting app that provides creativity prompts in the form of big questions: “What if anything were possible?” one prompt asks. “Who do you need to forgive?” asks another. Want to start a daily freewriting session? Schedule a daily reminder, and Brainsparker will send you a prompt at random at the specified time. Choose from a variety of themed prompt “packs” to curate your deck of prompts, including ones for developing characters, fiction story starters, crafting blog posts, or setting big goals.

Free, in-app purchases to access specialty packs



In an age of social distancing, many of us are craving more connection lately. HaikuJAM encourages poets to collaborate to create haiku-style three-line poetry. You write one line, another writer contributes another, and a third person finishes the poem with a final line. Syllable restrictions aren’t enforced, but the app does cap users at 17 words per line.



Do you prefer to brainstorm via mind mapping? TheBrain may be your new best friend. Create virtual, moveable, and searchable mind maps with this free app that can accommodate more than 500,000 items. Users can also upload files and events to store data or research in a more visibly oriented format. Want to share your map with others to get feedback or share progress? Simply send them a link to your Brain, and they’ll be able to access it via web browser, no software required.

Free for basic usage, $219 for TheBrain Pro

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