Today, my message will be very short and sweet. The tools that you use to write are not important. Yes, you heard me right. Let me explain.
It seems like every writing website has an advertisement for some piece of software or tools to improve your writing, but in the long run you don’t need those tools.
I’ve written stories using pen and paper, Google Drive, FocusWriter, Word, Pluma, Notepad++, yWriter, and haroopad. Each one of tools has its own features to “improve” your writing (FocusWriter offers distraction-free writing and yWriter is a free clone of Scrivener), but they also add a level of complexity. This added complexity takes you away from your story. It makes you jump through hoops to get any writing done.
As William Faulkner said, “The tools I need for my work are paper, tobacco, food, and a little whiskey.” If we focus on creating masterpieces with words instead of trying to master a new program, we will be ahead of the game.
In closing, here is a clip of George R. R. Martin talking about what he uses to write.
John Paul Wohlscheid is the author of Church Triumphant: 25 Men and Women who Gave Their Lives to Christ, Don’t Look a Gift Horse in the Mouth and Trouble is My Client. His stories feature a hard-boiled detective in the tradition of old-time radio shows. He blogs at Writer’s Soapbox.