Writing isn’t the easiest thing in the world. Whether you’re doing it for fun or doing it to get paid, there are certain blockers that you're bound to come up against sooner or later. Ideas run short, distractions are everywhere and sometimes it feels like finding your flow will take an eternity.
But, never fear. There’s an app for that! Writing can be fun and simple with the right app in your corner. Whether you’re a budding scriptwriter, seasoned novelist or a brand new blogger, these iPhone apps for writers will set you in the right direction. It's time to find out once and for all which writing app is “write” for you. Keep reading as we uncover all the latest and greatest writing apps to help you get your thoughts down and stay focused.
Which writing app is right for you?
Browse through the App Store and you’ll find a wealth of different tools for every step of the writing process. Whether you’re about to tap out the last word of a soon to be published novel, or jotting down ideas for your next social post, blog article or university thesis, ask yourself what stage you’re moving through in your own writing journey and choose the tool (s) that are sure to help the cause, from automating processes and eliminating distractions, to boosting productivity, and finding the perfect template.
Which famous author do you write like?
Ah, the question of the ages. Which famous author do you write like? Are your words dark and brooding like Edgar Allen Poe? Gritty and descriptive like Stephen King, or romantic and sweeping like Jane Austen? While there aren't any apps (right now at least) that tell you exactly who you write like, there is a statistical analysis tool on the web called “I Write Like.” All you do is copy/paste your work onto the platform and the tool will analyze your work and writing style and compare the work to famous writers, past and present. That said, your writing will most likely fall into one of the below four categories.
Narrative: used for crafting compelling novels and screenplays. This story-driven writing style creates and follows plot structures, including character progression, story, and conflict as told through the lens of a narrator. Hemingway, J.K Rowling, Roald Dahl and J.R.R Tolkien were (and are) all exceptional narrative writers.
Expository: Reserved for non-fictions books, research papers, news articles and similar, expository writing delivers facts and information in an engaging, understandable way.
Descriptive: Used by poets, and musicians, this descriptive writing style creates an image in a reader's mind through prose, figurative language and sensory appeal.
Persuasive: Blog posts, weekly columns, and opinion pieces usually take on a persuasive writing style, where the goal is to influence readers to adopt your point of view.
How to know which app is best for you?
There are hundreds of different apps that cover all aspects of writing preparation and delivery and all you need to do is figure out the option that boosts your productivity depending on where you are in your journey. So, how do you know which writing app is best for you?
Before you download your next writing tool/application from the App Store, read through some of the latest user comments at the bottom of the page. See which writing apps get the best reviews and why, how they've helped people in the past and if they’ve undergone any recent upgrades.
Knowing what you need in a new writing app is half the battle won. Pinpoint your needs and find the best solutions on Google before making a purchase on the App Store. Perhaps you’re looking for an app that will keep you focused and limit distractions. Perhaps you need an intuitive editor to help you write more naturally. Or maybe you’re after an end to end project management tool that can keep your thoughts in order and save key points for future reference.
Best Writing Editing Apps
Editing apps are great for giving your manuscript a final polish, keeping your content friendly, and engaging while eliminating unnecessary wordiness and the dreaded “passive” voice.
Just like literary giant Ernest Hemingway, the Hemingway Editor is known for its directness and simplicity. A powerfully simple tool, the Hemingway Editor is designed to simplify your writing, eliminate passive voice and shorten your sentences to keep them concise, engaging and to the point. By making suggestions, Hemingway will push you to be clear and direct in your writing.
Core Hemingway Editor Features Include:
- The ability to highlight complex sentences and simplify them with suggestions.
- The option to eliminate excess adverbs, passive voice, and unclear phrasing.
- An in-panel feature that lets you quickly switch from editing to writing mode.
Founded in 2009, Grammarly is one of the world's most widely adopted writing assistants. Available as a plug-in and app, the Grammarly cloud-based platform analyzes everything from clarity, and delivery, to punctuation and spelling, providing appropriate replacements along the way.
Grammarly Features Include:
- Highlighting and fixing imperfect grammar, spelling and punctuation errors.
- Built-in tone detector with an emphasis on phrasing and delivery.
- 400+ advanced checks and features with Grammarly Premium.
The ProWritingAid app is just as popular for its built-in reporting capability as it is for its advanced grammar/style checking. Users are able to strengthen their writing quickly and efficiently across all manner of articles, scripts, novels, blogs or social posts.
ProWritingAid Features Include:
- 1000+ real-time grammar, spelling and readability improvements.
- Built-in editing tool to eliminate repetitiveness, sentence length etc.
- In-app videos, and quizzes to help refine your skills and strengthen your writing style.
How Much Do Writing Apps Cost?
The cost of certain writing apps will vary according to their features, integrations, and overall capability. Generally, writing apps tend to be less expensive than, say, design apps, but it really depends on the team behind the project and how they’ve chosen to position it on the App Store.
The vast majority of iOS writing apps have chosen to forego a monthly subscription model in place of a one-time fee. These apps include editing software, topic creators, focus-keepers and/or word processors which range from $4.99 to $30, depending on their capability.
Then you've got your more robust writing apps that are geared to experienced writers regularly churning out high word volumes. These apps can go for anything from $50 to $80 once-off, or up to $100 a year if the app is purchased on a subscription model.
The most expensive writing app by far would be for screenwriting. These go for around $100 once off, up to $200 yearly (in some cases) These robust apps are able to store and process scripts in minute detail, allowing on the fly editing and other advanced features.
Best for Screenwriting
Speaking of Screenwriting, which apps are able to bring scripts to life in real-time?
Fade In is a multi-featured professional screenwriting app for iOS and Android. It’s designed to work with your mobile device to write, produce and deliver scripts effectively and efficiently. Compared to some of its competitors, The Fade-In App is decently priced and runs all the leading features you’ll find in more expensive mobile software.
Fade In Features Include:
- The ability to Import/export scripts using iCloud so you can access your work on the go.
- Strong editing functionality for handling multiple rewrites and/or revisions.
- A “Dialogue Tuner” for pulling up and editing specific character dialogue.
Final Draft Mobile
Arguably the best selling screenwriting software on the planet, Final Draft is now available on iOS. The app is perfect for editing existing scripts or creating new ones from scratch. Its intuitive interface is easy to use and packed with a host of award-winning features.
Final Draft Mobile Features Include:
- The ability to store your scripts on iCloud or move them over to the desktop.
- The Classic Tab alters scripts on the fly while highlighting specific scenes or characters.
- SmartType automatically navigates to scene headings and character names.
This comprehensive screenwriting tool is another powerful, intuitive platform where you can devise, create and edit scripts to your own specifications. All scripts are seamlessly formatted to leading industry standards with the option to highlight different characters, scenes or transitions.
Celtx Features Include:
- Leading script formats for screenplays, audio plays, comic books and more.
- Customizable formatting with a built-in revision mode.
- The ability to write collaboratively and share notes with team members.
Best Apps for Genre Templates
Cure writer's block by finding the templates that best suit your own unique writing style. Roll out leading articles, novels, screenplays and blog posts that hit their mark and resonate with the right audience.
Designed to help scriptwriters flesh out movie ideas in more detail, Script Builder can be used effectively in other writing mediums as well. The platform will ask you a series of leading questions around a character, setting, or scene to help you write more fluently.
ScriptBuilder Features Include:
- A "Character Builder" feature, where you’ll answer questions to grow your characters.
- The "Scene Builder" feature, where you’ll answer questions to bring clarity to your story.
- An “Act Building” feature where you’ll tie your premise together and set your story in motion.
Looking for a little creative inspiration? Stuck on ideas for what to write next? WritingPrompts generates millions of different topics, asking tailored questions to get your creativity moving while shaping top stories that you can refine and send out to the world. Prompts are subcategorized according to current events, scene elements, words, sketches, colours, genres, and writing types.
WritingPrompts Features include:
- Five different prompt generators, including scenes, news, sketches and texts.
- Over a million unique prompts across 80+ different story genres.
- The option to store your favourite prompts for quick reference.
Lists for Writers
Whether you're just starting out or you’re already a seasoned writer, Lists for Writers is a handy addition to help you craft compelling stories that stick. The app generates any number of lists across a variety of different topics to help you get the most out of your writing. Top lists include character traits, plot lines, and conflicts of interest.
Lists for Writers Features Include:
- The option to shuffle and search through leading lists.
- Core integration with iPad and Desktop.
- Dictionary support for looking up words without leaving the app.
Best App for Web-Based Novel Writing
The below novel-writing apps are perfect for budding and seasoned writers alike. With top features and maximum storage capacity for high volume works.
The ultimate writing environment/word processor for iPhone and Mac, Ulysses combines document management, fast exports and cutting-edge features for novel writers across every genre imaginable. Their markup-based editor is world-class with the ability to refine your angles in real-time.
Ulysses Features Include:
- A unified library where all revisions, notes and projects are kept for easy access.
- A cutting-edge proofreader and editing assistant.
- Localization and syncing for 20+ different languages.
The perfect app for larger manuscripts, Scrivener gives you the tools you need to grow your project organically, allowing you to jump around and write your content in any order you like. Formulate your paragraphs and find a place for them later using an intuitive interface that tracks your progress.
Scrivener Features Include:
- The ability to import your manuscript to Word, RTF, Final Draft, or plain text files.
- Seamlessly navigation using the “binder” sidebar feature.
- Effective editing by splitting your imported text into different sections.
Create a wide variety of stories, blog posts, or research articles and save them to the cloud for later with the LivingWriter App. This intuitively powerful word processor allows you to write on the go, customizing your fonts and format large chunks of text.
LivingWriter Features Include:
- The option to add detailed notes to different chapters and sections.
- The options to order and reorder your content with a simple Drag and Drop feature.
- The ability to write in Dark Mode for late-night creativity.
Best Blog Content Apps
Writing a blog is a different story altogether. Though they may be less word-heavy than a script or novel, they need to roll out regular, relevant content to remain effective. And generate audience engagement. These content apps are ideal for bloggers of all levels.
1Writer is an industry-leading text editor with some cool features that make delivering comms of any nature, genre or style a walk in the park. Use 1Writer to seamlessly edit, revise and share your blog posts at a moment's notice.
1Write Features Include:
- The ability to easily generate and edit any number of Markdown files.
- Customizable keyboard with tailored shortcuts for easier navigation and fast formatting.
Dynalist is a multi-purpose note-taking app that’s perfect for jotting down ideas, formulating stories, or experimenting with content. Used by seasoned professionals and beginners across multiple mediums, Dynalist will help you organize your notes, break down tasks and track your progress in real-time.
Dynalist Features Include:
- The option to create and zoom in on core bullet lists.
- The ability to share lists publicly and privately.
- Core cross-linking capability for lists and pages.
Simple, slick and to the point word processing at its finest. ZohoWriter provides writers with a place to organize their thoughts, edit documents and create new works. The ZohoWriter interface is clean and crisp and designed to eliminate distractions. It carries the same core features that you’ll find in Microsoft Word, with a few enhancements thrown in for good measure.
ZohoWriter Features Include:
- Work and write in multiple formats, with the option to import copy from Microsoft Word.
- Team collaboration capability and syncing.
- Full integration with WordPress.
Writing Apps For Writers For Getting Ideas
Every writer runs low on ideas from time to time. These apps will help spark creative ideas that can be turned into epic articles in the blink of any eye.
This all-in-one writing platform for iOS users will have you writing star-studded copy in no time. Use Squibbler to store multiple writing projects in one place, edit on the fly, and finalize your copy with built-in publishing capability.
Squibler Features Include:
- 30+ outline templates across multiple channels and genres.
- A native grammar checker for quick and simple editing.
- A “Corkboard” feature where you can organize your ideas and outlines in one place.
A first of its kind writing tool for writers that like to live on the edge. Danger notes is a free flow idea generation tool designed to help cure writer's block. How it works is simple. Keep writing as if your work life depends on it. And it does. Stop writing and your work disappears forever.
Danger notes Features include:
- The option to save and store previous notes.
- Progress is automatically saved once you hit a certain word count/volume.
This multifaceted mind mapping tool will ensure that your best ideas are expanded on and turned into actionable tasks. Use Ayoa to flesh out ideas for screenplays, narratives or topical blog posts. The interface is colourful, intuitive and packed with leading features and formatting options for simple, effective and fun idea generation.
Ayoa Features Include:
- The option to filter maps and tasks according to keywords and phrases.
- Core Drag and Drop feature for easy thought navigation and placement.
- The option to share mind maps publicly with different teams and collaborators.
Free creative writing apps
Writing Apps are going to cost money, or at least hold unlockable features behind some kind of paywall. The below three apps are entirely free to use and just as effective as their paid counterparts.
Turn your iPhone into a powerful writing studio with the Free Werdsmith App. fight writer's block with a host of leading features designed to help you get the most out of your writing sessions, channel your creativity and meet deadlines for blogs, novels or any other medium. Get the best writing tips from Werdmiths built-in Ghostwriter software and generate a consistent through-line for all your pieces.
Werdsmith Features Include:
- Selecting your preferred writing mode from the Werdsmith projects list.
- Setting daily reminders to build up stronger writing habits.
- Adding different word goals to your projects and tracking your daily stats.
The Pages App for iOS gives you the tools you need to devise breath-taking graphically enhanced designs to compliment your finished work. Choose from a variety of Apple-designed templates and create your own graphics for a variety of different documents, reports, blogs, e-books and more. Add additional elements to your work including videos, audio files, tables, charts and similar.
Pages Features Include:
- Collaboration and sharing ability with other team members.
- Choose from over 90 different Apple-designed templates for stunning visual content.
- Create interactive EPUB books that can be shared and published to Apple Books
And lastly, Bear is a simple and effective Markdown notes app where you can encrypt, sync and organize your copy in one place. The Bear platform has a variety of effective exportation tools, cutting edge features and editing capability to help you write quickly and securely wherever you happen to be.
Bear Features Include:
- Choosing your favourite in-panel themes across 12 options for the perfect writing environment.
- Take notes quickly and efficiently with built-in Siri and iOS Shortcuts.
- Adding a variety of different images, text, files, and web clippings with the Bear App extension.
That’s it for our list of leading iOS writing apps to help you generate ideas and fight off writers throughout 2022. Did we leave any out? Let us know in the comments below and all the best success for your next breakout novel, article or post!