I am often asked what my favorite “writing tools” are. Sometimes people mean “favorite app” (Scrivener) or just simply “what do I write with?” (MacBook Pro)

To answer these questions, and possibly provide you with some cool apps, services, and tools you may have never heard of, I present this list of writing tools that I’ve had personal experience with and completely vouch for.

Some of these tools are tools I currently use, while others are tools I’ve grown out of, put aside for a “better” solution, or just don’t have time to use. Every item on here, however, has been used personally by me and usually by other writers in my circle, and all of them are amazing at what they do.

The list is organized into categories: Productivity, Planning, Marketing, and Writing, and into groups of “type:” Apps, Software, and Online Tools. I didn’t include “hardware” or offline things that I use regularly, like the Canon 7oD for video or my trusty MacBook Pro, though these items are certainly awesome (the hardware is much more difficult to interchange, and I’ve found that just about everyone’s got a preference of their own already).

In addition, you can organize the list yourself by clicking on the headers.

Finally, you’ll find links to each of these services. Because I’ve used them, tested them, and love them, some links are affiliate links, which means I’ll earn a small commission if you purchase or upgrade the tool using that link. It doesn’t cost you an extra, and it’s just a small way to increase my income from this site!

Have fun, and happy writing!

ScrivenerSoftwareWritingThis is the all-in-one planning, research, drafting, writing, and publishing tool you've probably heard a lot about.
CoScheduleOnline ToolsPlanningCoSchedule is an editorial calendar, task manager, and social media planner for WordPress.
EvernoteSoftwarePlanningI store my "digital brain" in Evernote. You can save just about anything to it, and it syncs between all your devices.
iA WriterAppsWritingMinimalist writing app for iPad. Using Dropbox, you can sync writing in iAWriter between your devices and Scrivener.
TweetDeckSoftwareMarketingTweetDeck is the easiest way to keep track of your social accounts without needing to log in every time.
BufferOnline ToolsMarketingBuffer is a lifesaver. It posts automatically, using a queue-like list of your scheduled updates.
AWeberOnline ToolsMarketingAWeber is a lifesaver for me. It's the #1 mailing list provider, and I use it for all of my newsletters.
MailChimpOnlineMarketing"Sexier" than AWeber, easy-to-use, and free (up to a point), it's only #2 because of feature limitations.
MindlyAppsPlanningMindly is a mind mapping tool that I use for planning my world domination. It's super easy to use, but limited.
FeedlyOnline ToolsProductivityI subscribe to over 300 RSS (blog) feeds. How? By using a beautiful, easy-to-use tool like Feedly.
SkypeSoftwareProductivitySkype is my phone when I'm at home (I have no cell service). I use it for interviews, podcasting, and chatting.
ThingsSoftwareProductivityThe GTD (Getting Things Done) to-do list for Mac and iOS.
WunderlistSoftwareProductivityTotally free to-do list manager, sleek, elegant, and useful.
WordPressOnline ToolsWritingThe blog platform that I (and millions of others) use for blogging.
WP EngineOnline ToolsPlanningA hosting platform designed and built exclusively for WordPress users. Safe and secure managed hosting.
BasecampOnline ToolsPlanningI have been using Basecamp for sharing documents and commenting with my editor. It's a simple, scalable platform.
Hanx WriterAppsWritingA nifty little typewriter emulator for iPad created by Tom Hanks (yes, that one).
A Novel IdeaAppsPlanningHave an idea for your novel? Use your iPad to storyboard, plan, and sketch out your ideas.
UnstuckAppsProductivityThis awesome app is a cool way to get "unstuck" on a project quickly. Like a doctor for your productivity woes.
PocketOnline ToolsProductivityWhen I find an article I want to read later, offline, I save it to Pocket. Basically a version of Mac OS's "Read Later" tool.
GrammarlyOnline ToolsPlanningI've been testing Grammarly lately, and I love the interface and ease-of-use. It's still a little robotic, but is a great way to check for those last-minute typos before print.
ACXOnline ToolsMarketingProduce an audio version of your book, and sell it on Audible/Amazon. For free.
BabelcubeOnline ToolsMarketingWant your book to be translated into German or Spanish (or some other language)? Want it to be done for free?
99designsOnline ToolsMarketingI use 99designs for just about all of my book covers. Great price for what you get (design contest with dozens of entries!).
FiverrOnline ToolsMarketingFiverr is your one-stop shop for inexpensive, quick jobs. It's helped me find out if my Spanish translation is good or bad, and I've created podcast intros with it.
BooktrackOnline ToolsMarketingA newcomer to this list, Booktrack is a cool way to produce a "soundtrack" for your book's readers.
WattPadOnline ToolsWritingFree stories. A bunch of them. Also, a cool way to get your stories read by beta reviewers.
Blubrry PowerPress
Online ToolsPlanningBlubrry PowerPress is a podcasting solution for WordPress that takes the difficulty out of getting your podcast published and live.
LibsynOnline ToolsPlanningLibsyn (Liberated Syndication) is a reliable, secure, and inexpensive host for podcast files (mp3s). It beats hosting them yourself.
WoothemesOnline ToolsMarketingA fantastic resource for WordPress themes, plugins, and professional help.
Learn Scrivener FastOnline ToolsProductivityA friend of mine runs this amazing course, and it's the BEST way to learn how to use Scrivener (fast).
KDP SelectOnline ToolsPlanningKDP Select is Amazon's answer to self-published authors. Upload and your book is live on Amazon within 24 hours!
SmashwordsOnline ToolsPlanningThe all-in-one publishing solution for authors, helping you get your work into iBooks, Amazon, Kobo, and more.
IngramSparkOnline ToolsPlanningIngramSpark provides the best hardcover POD services for the money.
LightningSourceOnline ToolsPlanningThe best solution for the mid-size publisher (or author of 5 or more books), providing POD services and super high quality.
HostmonsterOnline ToolsPlanningHostmonster is a trusted, proven, shared hosting provider.
MidphaseOnline ToolsPlanningMidphase is sort of an "in-between" host: it's a little more high-end than Hostmonster, but not as expensive as WPEngine.
The Self-Publishing Answers PodcastOnline ToolsProductivityKevin Tumlinson and I riff on life, self-publishing, and not making enough money.
Gravity FormsOnline ToolsPlanningIf you use WordPress, you NEED to be using Gravity Forms. Hands-down the BEST form-building tool on the planet.
PersonaSoftwarePlanningPersona is a great tool for planning characters in your book. Add your character archetypes and watch them interact with one another.
The Power 100Online ToolsProductivityAn annually-updated list, The Power 100 is a list of the BEST blogs and websites for writers.
Elegant ThemesOnline ToolsMarketingGreat WordPress themes at great prices. I've used them for many websites in the past.