It’s time to stop using your word processor to proofread. As long as you have a computer and internet access, these tools can help make your writing more professional. If you want to improve your grammar and learn more about how language works, they can even teach you some things about English that might not be in any books or magazines.
In this post, we review the aspects of Professional Editing Software For Writers, best novel editing software, What software do most authors use, and What software does Stephen King use?
Professional Editing Software For Writers
There are plenty of tools out there that can help you write better. I’m sure you already know about Grammarly and ProWritingAid, but did you also know that there are dozens of other tools that can make your writing more professional? In this blog post, we’ll go over some of the best editing software for writers:
The free version of Grammarly offers you a spelling and grammar checker, as well as context-specific checking for your writing. The paid version also optimizes your style with help from the company’s AI technology, which can identify mechanical errors in your work and make suggestions for how to correct them.
The program’s most notable feature is its contextual spell checker and grammar checker; this means that it will alert you when it finds a mistake based on what it knows about what you’re writing at the moment instead of just searching through the entire document looking for problems. This allows it to be more accurate than other tools on the market, which often only scan an entire document before offering their feedback on whether something needs correction or not—and sometimes miss important details as a result!
ProWritingAid is a grammar-checking tool that also offers plagiarism detection and sentence structure analysis. The free version is more limited than the paid version, but it’s still useful for casual writers.
The paid version costs $15 per month if you pay annually or $19 if you pay monthly. This can seem expensive if you’re just writing blog posts for fun, but it’s worth the investment if you plan to get serious about writing professionally in the future.
ProWritingAid has different features depending on which package you subscribe to:
- Free Version: The free version only checks your work against plagiarism databases and doesn’t offer any suggestions on how to improve it beyond flagging any instances where there might have been plagiarism detected. -Plagiarism Detection -Sentence Structure AnalysisProWritingAid Features”The Professional Writing Package” adds these additional features: Grammar checking with suggested corrections (including synonyms) based on usage of over 700 commonly misused words and phrases.Plagiarism detection using Google’s database of billions of web pages (you can choose whether this feature is active or not).”The Premium Package” adds these additional features:
The Hemingway App is a free tool for writers who want to make their writing easier to read. It uses AI to identify passive sentences, adverbs, and more, and it provides a color scale that shows how complex your writing is.
The paid version has additional features like grammar checking and the ability to export your work in various formats.
After the Deadline
After the Deadline is a free online grammar checker and proofreader that’s available in over 40 languages. It’s a browser plug-in, so you don’t have to download anything (but if you do, you can use it offline).
After the Deadline has some amazing features that make it one of the best writing software options out there:
- A plagiarism checker
- A style guide for writers of all kinds (novels, short stories, poems)
- Word count tracking
LanguageTool is a free online language checker that can help you find mistakes in your writing. LanguageTool checks for mistakes in English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese and Russian. You can also use this tool to check for plagiarism–to see if someone else has copied your work without giving credit.
LanguageTool works by checking the text against a database of common grammar mistakes and confusing words. It then gives you an overview with suggestions on how to correct them (or what they mean). For example:
- “I” should be capitalized when it refers to the speaker (like I did) but not otherwise (like I’m going). It’s worth noting that when we talk about ourselves as humans in general terms we don’t capitalize; so if you were talking about people generally (“the human race”) or animals (“the dog ran”), then no capitals needed!
Ginger is a great option for aspiring writers who want to make sure their work is grammatically sound. It’s free, but you can upgrade to Ginger Pro for $5/month (or pay once $60). You can also get a free trial of Ginger Pro by signing up on the website.
Ginger has integrations with Microsoft Word, Google Docs and Gmail so you can use it wherever you write—not just on your computer! The app checks spelling and grammar as well as provides style suggestions based on industry best practices (like capitalizing “Internet,” or ending sentences with periods).
WhiteSmoke is another popular grammar and spelling checker. It’s one of the most widely used grammar checkers in Germany, Switzerland, Italy and Austria.
WhiteSmoke has a free version but you have to pay for the premium version. The free version is pretty limited, so if you’re serious about your writing career then it might be worth splurging on WhiteSmoke’s pro version.
PolishMyWriting.com is a free tool that checks for over 100 errors in your writing, and it’s available for both Mac and PC. It also has a special feature that helps you find passive voice, which is often not as effective as active voice.
1Checker is a free online grammar checker that’s similar to Grammarly and ProWritingAid. The site was founded in 2008, so it has a long history of providing writers with solid grammar advice. When you use 1Checker, it checks for spelling and punctuation errors as well as grammatical mistakes like run-on sentences or fragments. It also checks for style issues like using passive voice or making sure you’re using active verbs when possible. As if that weren’t enough for one website, 1Checker also includes a plagiarism checker so you know whether your work matches up against any potentially stolen materials on the internet (and yes – it’s pretty easy to find these days).
If you find that your writing needs more than just basic editing help from an online tool like 1Checker, they offer premium features such as unlimited revisions within 30 days after purchase of their service plan which costs $5 monthly/$50 annually ($60). You can also opt out of receiving email notifications about changes made by other users so no one sees what changes were made unless they’re logged into their account first; this feature costs $10 per month/$100 annually ($120).
If you’re looking for help with grammar, spelling and punctuation, Slick Write is a great choice. This free software can be used on both Mac and PC, and it also has mobile apps for Android and iOS. It has a website version as well.
Slick Write will perform all the standard editing functions you’d expect: grammar checking, spell checker with automatic correction suggestions and text formatting that includes bolding or italicizing text (you just select the text you want to format). But what sets Slick Write apart is its ability to turn your written work into more of a story by highlighting certain words in red or blue so they stand out. You can use this feature creatively by emphasizing details that are important to your story—or simply use it as one more way to edit as if having an editor with you!
White Smoke Grammar Checker Review
White Smoke is a proofreading and grammar checking tool. It’s available for Windows, Mac, Linux and Android. It’s not the cheapest option out there at $19.99 per month (the monthly plan), but it does have a free version that offers many of the same features as its paid counterpart.
The paid version has more features than the free version including:
- Advanced Punctuation Rules – A full list of advanced punctuation marks can be accessed through a drop down menu within White Smoke’s search bar to aid in your writing process
- Thesaurus – A built-in Thesaurus allows you to use words that are more appropriate than those suggested by White Smoke
Just a list of different grammar/editing tools
- Hemingway App (free)
- After the Deadline (free)
- LanguageTool ($0-$20/month) – this site is awesome and works just like Ginger but free! With languagetool you can copy the text from your browser and paste it into their website for a quick checkup, or upload an entire document for more detailed coverage of spelling errors and grammar issues. You can choose to pay for a premium subscription, which allows you to ignore certain types of errors that irritate you so that they don’t slow down your writing process too much: For example, if there are subordinate clauses in your writing that confuse or distract you when reading it over again after some time has passed since finishing the first draft (and they sometimes do), then you could go ahead and mark them as “ignore” so as not to have them flagged every time someone looks at what you’ve written!
best novel editing software
Your choice of book editing software will make all the difference to the final quality of your book.
Editing tools are indispensable for all authors, no matter how experienced.
Writing a book is the easy part. But after you finish writing your first draft, you will need all the help you can get to polish your manuscript and improve your writing.
You have choices, both free and paid. But take your time and choose the best one for you.
What is book editing software?
A basic grammar checker will do the job for many writers when checking an article or blog post written in Microsoft Word or Google Docs.
But like most word processors, the spelling and grammar checks are not very reliable.
However, there are lots of free online grammar apps to help if you are writing short texts up to around 3,000 words.
You only need to copy and paste a text into a free app to check for grammar, spelling, passive voice, adverb use, and possibly punctuation.
For an author, though, it’s not a practical solution. A book might be between 30,000 and 120,000 words, so authors need a better writing tool for editing.
An author needs help with much more than grammar and spelling.
Good book editing software will help check for consistency of tone and style, dialogue tags, redundancies, repetition, and overused words and phrases.
Like most new authors, you probably wrote your book in MS Word. That’s fine, but it’s time to work on making your writing and your book shine.
Even if you plan to use a professional editor, the more you can do to improve your manuscript before you send it to your editor will save you money.
So what choices do you have when it comes to good book editing software?
1. Prowritingaid (Premium)
Prowritingaid not only has twenty different writing reports to analyze your writing.
It also integrates with so many other applications.
Yes, it works everywhere with a browser extension for short-form and online and social media writing.
But more importantly, it integrates with book writing software, including Scrivener and Final Draft.
If you used Word or Open Office to write your book, you can also integrate Prowritingaid.
A big plus is that there are no limitations, unlike some other applications.
There are no word count or file size limits.
Because of this, you can work on your complete manuscript without the need to chop it up into chapters.
A free version is available, but it has a miserly 500-word limit. So it’s not a great offer.
But for authors, the modestly priced premium version of Prowritingaid is a good option for an editing tool for you.
2. Grammarly (Premium)
Without a doubt, Grammarly is the most popular writing checker.
I use it day in and day out for my short-form writing. However, when it comes to editing a book manuscript, there is one drawback.
Document limitation: In any 24-hour period, you can check up to 100 documents or 50,000 words.
Page limitation: You can check up to 100,000 characters (including spaces) at a time when you use the Grammarly Editor. There is no page limitation if you use it with Microsoft Word and Outlook.
If you are using Grammarly for Microsoft Word on Mac, you’ll be able to check a document of up to 150,000 characters (including spaces).
Upload limitation: You can upload a document of up to 100,000 characters (including spaces) to the Grammarly Editor. Your document’s file size shouldn’t exceed 4 MB.
Even though it is a fine editing tool, unless you integrate it with Microsoft Word on a PC, you will need to edit one chapter at a time.
If you have an account and use Word on a PC, it will do the job for you. In this respect, it is nearly as good as Prowritingaid.
But if you use Word for Mac or any other word processor or book writing software, you have limitations on how much of your book you can edit.
My experience has been that I can only check one chapter at a time because I use a Mac.
To do this, I save each chapter as a separate Word document, and then after editing, save them all back into one document.
However, even with these limitations, it will help you enormously when you start editing the second or third draft of your book.
3. Scrivener (Premium)
When you are working on your book, you can drag and drop chapters, work in distraction-free writing mode and use all the other tools that make Scrivener so popular.
But you can also use it for your book editing. If you like, you can combine two tools into one.
Of course, it comes with an in-built grammar and spelling checker.
It does an adequate job of finding and helping your correct basic grammar and spelling mistakes. But it’s not nearly as powerful as a dedicated checker.
However, the big advantage of Scrivener is that you can integrate it with Prowritingaid. Then you have all your bases covered for writing and editing your book.
If you are wondering about Grammarly, no, there is no integration.
But there is a workaround you can use. Tall Tech Tales have a detailed how-to article to show you how to use Grammarly with Scrivener.
4. Hemingway App (Free)
The Hemingway editor is a favorite for lots of writers. It’s not really a grammar checker, but as a style checker, it does a great job for a free app.
It can help you find weaknesses in your writing so you can work on making it much more powerful.
Some call it the rainbow editor, and it’s an apt description.
But the colors are what help you analyze your writing. You should work on one point at a time.
Perhaps start by reducing your passive voice use (green), then move on to removing unnecessary adverbs (blue).
Then you can tackle difficult sentences (yellow).
The huge benefit of Hemingway is that you have a generous limit.
In fact, I’m not sure there is a limit. I copied and pasted a 20,000-word novella into the app, and it started work within seconds.
Sure, it’s not as sophisticated and doesn’t come with all the tools a premium app has. But for free, you get a lot of editing help for your money.
Even though I use premium checkers, I still use Hemingway from time to time to double-check. Very often, it finds issues that other apps might have missed.
What software do most authors use
It requires the right attitude, a powerful book idea, some solid writing prompts, and the best writing software out there.
And we know which writing software is best for you – and more importantly, why it matters.
With the best writing tools, you can write faster and more effectively. You’ll be more focused, with fewer distractions, and you can actually learn a thing or two from some of them—like Grammarly.
And just as importantly, you’ll have an easier time keeping your outline, notes, book ideas or writing prompts, and even those writing exercises organized.
But even if you have all the best ideas and an imagination that won’t quit, you can’t do either without the right book writing software.
I mean, you could, but it just makes this already arduous process even harder. No thanks.
You’ll have to make some choices.
Nowadays, authors have so many options when looking for the best book writing software (which is why we created the quiz below–to cut down on decision-making and wasted time!).
Here are the best writing software programs:
Let’s get started by comparing the 3 book writing software “giants,” and then I’ll share some less well-known tools that might help improve your writing process even more.
Which book writing software features are right for you?
I’m not trying to sell you on any particular book writing software in this article. Instead, my goal is to give you an idea of what’s out there so you can weigh the options for yourself in order to aid in your specific process.
Who knows—you may even discover a brand-new writing and publishing tool you absolutely love.
In the end, the truth is that there are many great writing tools out there. It isn’t really a question of which tool is BEST. What it comes down to is: which tool works best with YOUR book writing process?
There are 11 things to consider when deciding which program to use for your book:
The Best Book Writing Softwares for Authors: Paid, Free, Grammar, & Productivity
Not all writing software is created equally. We’ve found that different writers, writing different things, have many different needs. So we’ve broken down the best software for writers using four categories: paid, free, software for grammar, and productivity software to cut down on distractions.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Through this post, you’ll see overall key features, drawbacks, and pricing, along with a “TECH LEVEL” for each, which is rated out of 5, with 5 being a high tech knowledge needed to easily navigate and a 1 being so easy that your 80-year-old grandmother who has never used a computer would be able to use it (there aren’t any 1s, but you get the idea). You’ll also see a “BEST FOR” that will suggest the type of person who would best benefit from each writing software.
Ultimately, we suggest taking this quick assessment that can determine the software best for you, but you can also self-select based on our findings.
Here are the overall criteria you can expect for each writing software below:
SOFTWARE NAME: BEST FOR: TYPE: TECH LEVEL: PRICING:
You’ll also see a link to get started with that software below each summary box. Let’s get started with your paid options, which will ultimately be best for serious writers.
Paid Book Writing Software
There used to be a time where paying for a writing software just seemed silly. The thing is, writers have been paying to write on something for a while. If you think there weren’t snooty writers who were picky about their typewriters pre-computers, you’d be wrong.
That said, paid writing softwares cost money for a reason. They’re just typically better, with more capabilities, conveniences, and other features that are worth the money to help you writer a better book faster.
These are the paid writing-specific softwares we recommend that are Self-Publishing School tried and true.
#1 – NovelPad
NovelPad is a semi-new writing software (launched in 2020) that has been making the rounds in the writing community. It’s best for writers, as it has character boards, scene tracking, and more, but someone writing a nonfiction book can still benefit from its features.
Among some of the best features is the goal-tracking section, where you can set monthly writing goals, create sprints, and track how much total progress you’ve made and how many total minutes you’ve put into your book. This feature also dynamically updates your goals per day, so if you don’t hit your goal word count one day, the daily goals for the rest of the month will automatically update to keep you on track.
Also notable about NovelPad is the customer service and responsiveness. When you join NovelPad, you may be invited to join a Discord group for the software, which has a Writing Room where you can connect with other authors, along with a Bug Tracker and Suggestions room where you can drop notes and ideas directly to the creators and software developers.
Since I started using this, a feature I recommended only a month ago has been added (unlimited color picker for the scene markers).
Where this writing software really soars above others is in its simplicity of use. You do not have to be super tech-savvy in order to navigate and begin use immediately, whereas this is more difficult with software like Scrivener.
Highly recommend this software for several reasons, you can see more features and pricing below.
SOFTWARE NAME: NovelPadBEST FOR: Fiction WritersTYPE: Story Mapping & Word ProcessorTECH LEVEL: 2 / 5PRICING: $8 monthly or $60 annually (with a 14-day free trial)
#2 – Scrivener
You just learned that Microsoft Word is the most widely used word processor in the world. But does that mean it’s the best book writing software?
Think about it this way. The fact that Word is so prevalent means that it has to cater to all sorts of users—students, businesspeople, writers, teachers, marketers, lawyers, the list goes on and on and on.
But Scrivener was created for one type of person only:
And if you’re a writer, chances are you’ve heard of Scrivener. A lot of writers absolutely love this program, with its advanced features and distraction-free writing experience.
In short, Scrivener gives you an insane amount of flexibility for writing, formatting, and organizing your book for self-publishing.
Because Scrivener was designed for writers, it’s super easy to lay out scenes, move content around, and outline your story, article, or manuscript.
Instead of keeping all your content in one big file, Scrivener allows you to create multiple sub-files to make it easier to organize and outline your project.
But as awesome as Scrivener is, it’s not perfect.
And the biggest downside to using Scrivener is the steep learning curve involved. You aren’t going to master this program overnight.
But if you’re serious about your writing career, then investing the time to learn this specific writing tool will be worth it. You’ll save time and energy in the long run.
And if you want to learn how to use Scrivener as quickly & easily as possible, we can help! Here’s a full Scrivener tutorial so you can easily maneuver this program.
SOFTWARE NAME: ScrivenerBEST FOR: Fiction WritersTYPE: Story Mapping & Word ProcessorTECH LEVEL: 5 / 5PRICING: $49 for download, $19 additional for IOS – 30-day free trial
#3 – Plottr
Plottr was created by an author for authors, specifically fiction. The overall bonus of this software (and what people tend to like most) is the plotlines timeline feature that allows you to track the various plotlines, which chapters they appear in, and with colors (image below).
This software also has various templates you can use to get started on your story’s structure to keep it in line with industry standards. This can be really handy for those who aren’t as well-versed in novel structures or are beginners when it comes to writing fiction novels.
Plottr is an app, and can be used across multiple devices (so long as you pay for more than 1 device). This can be a big pro for people who prefer to work on apps and not in a browser, to minimize distractions.
However, the user interface of Plottr is definitely behind the curve when it comes to intuitive design that’s easy to use. It doesn’t seem to be easily organized and can take longer to understand how it all works together and how to use it effectively.
SOFTWARE NAME: PlottrBEST FOR: Fiction WritersTYPE: Story Mapping & Word ProcessorTECH LEVEL: 4 / 5PRICING: $25 annually or $99 lifetime for 1 device (more options for multiple devices) – 14-day free trial
#4 – Atticus
This newly released writing software by Dave Chesson over at Kindlepreneur is a simple writing software that also has formatting capabilities. No need to download your book from one software just to upload it to another for formatting!
The interface is super simple with this writing software, with a left sidebar to house your front matter, body (the chapter-by-chapter outline and writing), and then backmatter.
The formatting section of this software is a huge win, especially for self-published authors who do most of this stuff themselves (or who outsource it). It allows for “themes” for some pre-loaded design features for chapter headings, font type, and more, while also allowing you to choose other formatting setting, like how to begin a new scene (indents or all caps sentence) and other small details that can make formatting so much easier for new authors.
Overall, this is much more of formatting software than it is a true writing software due to its limited features to assist in the writing process. If you really don’t need anything extensive when it comes to plotting, characters, or other fiction-specific capabilities, Atticus may be a great tool for you, particularly for nonfiction writers who like to churn out books quickly and on a budget (since you can format yourself).
This tool is a bit pricier in terms of writing softwares, but due to its formatting function, it’s competitively priced against formatting softwares like Vellum.
You can check out a full, comprehensive Atticus review here.
SOFTWARE NAME: AtticusBEST FOR: Nonfiction Self-PublishersTYPE: Word Processor & FormattingTECH LEVEL: 3 / 5PRICING: $147 (no free trial, 30-day money back guarantee)
#5 – Microsoft Word
Before any other writing tools came along, Microsoft Word was the only option available. Everyone used it.
Today, even though there are many other word processors out there, Word is still the most widely used book writing software in the U.S. Millions of people continue to use it for their writing needs.
And it’s easy to see why. Word has a lot going for it!
It’s been around a long time. It’s trusted, reliable, and gets the job done well.
It also provides a relatively distraction-free writing experience; much better than working on Google Docs in your browser, for example, where you’re only an errant mouse-click away from the entire internet.
If you just need to wake up in the morning and meet your word-count goals by keeping your head down and getting those words pounded out onto the page, then Word is an obvious choice of book writing software. No fuss, no muss. It’s about as simple as it gets and can help you finish your draft easily.
Word also offers some simple organization.
While writing your chapters, changing the chapter’s heading (seen in the example below) allows easy navigation as your book progresses further and further.
Using headers, you can organize your book into chapters—and then you can navigate through them quickly using the Navigation pane:
In order to view your navigation pane in outline-format click:
View > Navigation Pane (it’s a box to check) > select the bullet/outline tab within the navigation pane (seen above).
You can also create your own free book writing template using Word. And if you start writing your book in Word and don’t begin with the correct formatting, it’s pretty easy to clean up your formatting to make it “book ready” with a few simple steps.
If you’re a Word user and you’ve got your own system in place for writing books, then perhaps you need to look no further.
But as a writing tool, Word does have some downsides.
For starters, it doesn’t always play well with Macs. If you use a Mac, then Word might cause you a lot of frustration with crashes and formatting.
Word is also pretty vanilla. That’s part of its appeal, sure, but it also means Word lacks some of the more advanced features you get with other programs like Scrivener and Google Docs.
For example, Scrivener offers more advanced outlining functionality. And Google Docs makes it easier to share and collaborate on your files.
All in all, Word is a solid contender for best book writing software. But there are many other choices out there.
What software does Stephen King use?
Interesting fact: Stephen King uses MS Word writing software to draft his book manuscripts. He uses Final Draft to write screenplays. How much does MS Word cost? Microsoft Word costs $139.99 as a one-time purchase.