Software for writing a book?

iAlexG

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 15, 2009
509
1
UK
I have been planning to write a book for a while and have got all the ideas down. What apps can i use to write the novel?
 

jonbravo77

macrumors 6502a
Feb 20, 2008
999
23
Phoenix, AZ
Good ole fashion Microsoft Word. will do everything you need it to do. That's what my wife uses. I suggest talking to some ppl who are authors so you can get formatting information.
 

vagabondlife4me

macrumors newbie
Mar 21, 2007
21
0
Obviously any word processor will do, but you might want to check out Scrivener
I will second the recommendation of Scrivener and would like to add WriteRoom to the mix as well. I have written about 1000 pages with it so far and love the distraction free writing and the small footprint lets it run well on some of my older hardware.

Vagabond
 

MisterMe

macrumors G4
Jul 17, 2002
10,650
28
USA
Obviously any word processor will do, but you might want to check out Scrivener
I agree. The OP appears to be confusing writing with typesetting. The publisher has professionals who will do that. All they need from the author is the content. For that, he does not need anything as sophisticated as a word processor. A text editor will do.
 

irbdavid

macrumors regular
Mar 27, 2006
154
0
TeX, LaTeX and co. are excellent - people regularly use them to write & typeset books. All free, and the net results will look as good as anything done with proprietary software packages.

Particularly, check out MacTeX as an easy install, and the Memoir package is a godsend for long documents.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LaTeX
 

MacDawg

macrumors Core
Mar 20, 2004
19,708
4,274
"Between the Hedges"
There 3 different thoughts running in this thread, at least as far as I can tell

1. Writing... which any text editor or word processor can handle

2. Organizing... which is addressed by Scrivener and other software solutions. This allows the writer to organize thoughts, plot lines, characters, research, snips and tidbits in a usable manner that is more efficient than scratch paper, notebooks and such.

3. Formatting.. which may be dictated by the publisher themselves and require other considerations.
 

AlexH

macrumors 68020
Mar 7, 2006
2,037
3,148
It's all about what works for you. In terms of features, Scrivener is one of the best apps out there for writing. I write a lot in iWork (Pages) and have a lot of notes in MacJournal, but I use Scrivener a lot too.

There's a free 30-day trial, so download Scrivener and give it a shot before you drop some coin. ;)
 

flyfish29

macrumors 68020
Feb 4, 2003
2,173
4
New HAMpshire
I will second the recommendation of Scrivener and would like to add WriteRoom to the mix as well. I have written about 1000 pages with it so far and love the distraction free writing and the small footprint lets it run well on some of my older hardware.

Vagabond
I second WriteRoom. It is great for blocking out everything on your computer screen and lets you focus on your writing. It is especially helpful for those of us with ADD!:D

A trick my wife uses when she sits down to write a book is to have a separate log-in just for book writing- then you can remove all mail, safari, etc icons so you are less tempted to check email or surf while trying to write.
 

iAlexG

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 15, 2009
509
1
UK
Obviously any word processor will do, but you might want to check out Scrivener
Looks good. I'll try it later.

I second WriteRoom. It is great for blocking out everything on your computer screen and lets you focus on your writing. It is especially helpful for those of us with ADD!:D

A trick my wife uses when she sits down to write a book is to have a separate log-in just for book writing- then you can remove all mail, safari, etc icons so you are less tempted to check email or surf while trying to write.
thats a good idea. I dont like writing in WriteRoom that much. But i like using Pages '09 fullscreen.
Good ole fashion Microsoft Word. will do everything you need it to do. That's what my wife uses. I suggest talking to some ppl who are authors so you can get formatting information.
I hate Microsoft Word on Mac. It is just so slow and dull to use. Always to much going on.
 

Scylax

macrumors regular
Jun 14, 2009
101
0
Use Scrivener.

Having just completed my own first novel, and having tried out several applications, I am sure you won't find anything to beat Scrivener. The software is perfect, and you shouldn't discount a supportive developer and forum always ready to help you in any software or book related problem you might have. Head over to literatureandlatte.com, give the free trial a go, look on the forums, then buy it and get writing!

Good luck with your book!:)
 

Badradio

macrumors 6502
Aug 19, 2004
405
0
Manchester
Another vote for Scrivener. I wrote my last book in Word, but once I was done I needed to edit and move a lot of stuff around. Scriv lets you do that very easily, whereas Word is mostly linear. It's very good for researching and outlining too. If you want more specifics, I wrote a blog post about it a while back.
 

Cinder6

macrumors 6502
Jul 9, 2009
464
18
Yet another Scrivener vote. Great software. If you really want distraction-free writing, it has full-screen view, and you can set the colors to match WriteRoom (which is also good; just pointing out a way to save money).
 

Let's Sekuhara!

macrumors 6502
Jun 30, 2008
357
1
日本
Celtx [pronounced "Kell-Ticks"] is ideal for screenwriting and storyboarding. As for novel writing I'm not so sure. But it's free and open source, so you may as well look into it.
 

dunbar.will

macrumors newbie
Apr 25, 2010
5
0
Another vote for Scrivener. I wrote my last book in Word, but once I was done I needed to edit and move a lot of stuff around. Scriv lets you do that very easily, whereas Word is mostly linear. It's very good for researching and outlining too. If you want more specifics, I wrote a blog post about it a while back.

YES. Under-loved feature -- you can just move whole chunks around by chapter, or whatever size chunk you set them to, visually, without scrolling around. . . I was a die-hard index card person until I met this program.
 

daceymathers

macrumors member
Apr 17, 2011
40
0
newyork
I have been planning to write a book for a while and have got all the ideas down. What apps can i use to write the novel?
Well there are lots of software for writing a book or novel but i will recommend you to use literal software.Literal software is easy to use and pick up.It has various advanced features like binder,split screen etc.It also have add research option for .pdf files.
 

daceymathers

macrumors member
Apr 17, 2011
40
0
newyork
Good ole fashion Microsoft Word. will do everything you need it to do. That's what my wife uses. I suggest talking to some ppl who are authors so you can get formatting information.
Hi jonbravo,

I agree with you that microsoft word do everything what we need but still there are various softwares with more advanced features that provides better service than ms-word do.Like Literal software has Split screen that allows you to view documents side by side, eliminating the need to switch between multiple software applications.It also has reasearch option which refer to multiple documents and pdf files in the one software application. Literal allows you to view your research alongside your current work.So i think you should try out some other software also.
 

exegete77

macrumors 6502a
Feb 12, 2008
529
5
As a user of Scrivener for the past three years, I highly recommend it. It allows you to doing the writing, editing, rearranging, etc. And you can export to .rtf for delivering. I have been using it to edit a magazine; six issues, and it works like a charm. Wish I had something like this over the past 40 years. Nothing is better than this tool for this type of work.
 

MisterMe

macrumors G4
Jul 17, 2002
10,650
28
USA
Hi jonbravo,

I agree with you that microsoft word do everything what we need but still there are various softwares with more advanced features that provides better service than ms-word do.Like Literal software has Split screen that allows you to view documents side by side, eliminating the need to switch between multiple software applications.It also has reasearch option which refer to multiple documents and pdf files in the one software application. Literal allows you to view your research alongside your current work.So i think you should try out some other software also.
It is one thing to come here and shill for a particular favorite software title. You may like Literal. You may have a financial interest in it. However, this is a Mac forum. Literal is exclusively Windows software. If it is ever ported to the Mac, then it may be greeted with a big fat "Meh." Literal appears to be a cut-down version of the the Mac word processor that has been devoted to distraction-free writing for quite a while now, Scrivener.