Writerly Wednesday: Author Tools
There are so many great tools out there for authors. It can be overwhelming at first, because there is so much information out there. I've compiled a list of the tools that I use to get my writing done. Let me know if you have any questions!
Google Docs. Yes, it's pretty much just Word. However, the convenient thing is that you can access it anywhere that you have internet. Back in the day, I used to email documents to myself basically every single day. It bogged down my computer (and my email!). Docs automatically saves your progress as well as prior versions, so if you lose something you can go back and find it. Another amazing perk of Docs is multiple people can be working in a document at the same time. That's especially helpful whenever you are writing with a co-author!
Canva. This is a paid subscription service, but let me tell you, it is so helpful. I have a bit of an eye for graphic design, so I use Canva to create all of my promotional images, graphics for social media, as well as business cards and media kits for my projects. You have access to a lot of really cool features with the premium version, and it makes creating great visual images so much easier than if I had to try and do it all on my own.
Plottr. Admittedly, I don't use this as much as I would like to. Plottr is a software that you can use to plot out your story. You can do it on a timeline or outline view. It comes pre-loaded with templates for different story structures, or you can create your own. It also has an option to put information on characters, locations, and additional notes. One of my favorite features is the series option! I almost wish this was a web based product, so I could refer to it anywhere instead of just on my laptop. It's great for the price you pay for the software.
Loomly. Ugh, Marketing, am I right? When you're an indie author, you are everything: writer, publisher, marketer. Having to balance multiple social media accounts can be very daunting. During our launch for Guns & Smoke, I used a calendar to remind myself to go and post things. Loomly takes a lot of the hassle out of that, because you can schedule posts in advance. I just used it to plan nearly all of my posts for the next month! Again, it is a paid subscription, but it is worth every penny to not have to chase my social accounts all of the time.
Spotify. I pay for a premium account, but you don't have to. Spotify gives you access to tons of songs. I'm able to tell my echo to play a specific song, and it will. I use it to build playlists for each of my projects. Spotify offers suggestions on similar songs as well. As a writer, music keeps me in specific scenes, so having similar songs being suggested to build a specific feel for a project is great.
Google Calendar. This is super helpful to keep track of your life. I don't just use this for writing stuff. I have a calendar specifically for my personal stuff, as well as for my bookish stuff. I have one calendar that Lauren and I share because it's easier for us to be able to make plans and stick it on a calendar, then get reminders.
Google Sheets. I am a super organized person. I need to be able to see things in clean lines, and I use Sheets to plot out our budget and put in all of the calculations so I can be sure that everything is up to date. I also use it to keep track of my expenses, though I am in the process of moving over to QuickBooks. I also have a master spreadsheet of all of my writing projects. It's exactly like Excel, just more easily accessible on the go.
These are the main tools that I use to keep myself organized and feel like my life has some semblance of control. Are there any tools that you use that aren't listed above? Let me know! I am always looking for things to make my life more efficient!