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Put It In Writing

Put it in Writing: Apps available to keep students focused

Kirsten Saylor discusses apps that are designed to keep students focused on their writing.

As college students, we rely on technology for everything. In this day and age, it’s our way of communication, research and entertainment. With technology continuing to advance, we can see the changes it’s beginning to have on our society.

Nowadays there’s an app for everything. And with all these options available at our fingertips, all writers, fiction or nonfiction, should take full advantage of the technological advances made.

I’ve created a list of the best apps to download for writers:

SelfControl: This is a free app for Mac users. On this app you can “white-list” websites that you wish to always go on and “black-list” ones which are distracting. You do this on a time limit so you can focus on the work you have in front of you.

FocusWriter: Similar to SelfControl, but available on Windows as well, FocusWriter is a distraction-free application that also includes several tools to help assist you, such as timers, alarms, and spell-check.

Trelby: For all the aspiring screenwriters out there, Trelby is the app you need. It is a free application that works on all platforms and possesses screenplay editing, importing and exporting tools and a comparability screen.

Hemingway: Editing is hard as it is and Hemingway is here to help. Hemingway goes through your writing and highlights key areas that need work and words that need replaced or taken out entirely. Each highlighting color represents something different and it is all explained in a legend for you.

Evernote: This app is to be used on both your computer and your phone. Evernote allows users to organize their thoughts, information and media in one place. You can save full webpages, illustrations, audio and notes to the app. It can also be synced across all devices, providing full access at all times.

With these applications, hopefully you can find focus, organization and help for all of your writing troubles. And they’re all free so it wouldn’t hurt to give them a shot. Who knows, maybe an app is exactly what you need to get motivated to complete your work.

Kirsten Saylor is a freshman studying English. Email her at

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