These are a few of the tools I use to get some writing done. For Sane Magazine I use a few home-rolled apps to generate the main issue and the horoscopes. They aren’t public as of yet, nor are they even Universal Binary yet. They just work, mostly, and don’t get tweaked too much. Maybe someday. It’s funny, I seem to use considerably less apps for writing than I do for the other things. Well, not funny. Or even interesting, really. Strike that thought from your mind, in fact. It is what it is:
Tinderbox – This is such a great knowledge management tool… I used Storyspace back at Vassar with MJ and the HyperCrew, from which Tinderbox inherits a lot, visually. I use the map view, more than anything, to organize my novels (like Lemon Wrestler (Working title), for example)… usually there are a few notes that encompass other notes, working areas, drafts (notes with links to files created by Writer.app), research (notes with clips from webpages or notes on my own or URLs from which Tinderbox will fetch content off a web page for me). There are character, plot, location, and scene prototypes to color my notes certain ways. Entire subnotes for the principal characters and character work and “story behind the story” work that goes in early. I also use it to manage the Q.I. Software web site. It’s a pretty powerful, flexible tool, and using that in conjunction with CSSEdit comes out with something a lot nicer than iWeb produces, for example.
Mellel – Mellel is an excellent word processor. I try to use this as my main word processor because it’s so much lighter and more responsive than MS Word. It’s just as fully featured, and the developers are pretty responsive. All in all, it’s a great alternative to Word (and much cheaper). However, Word being Word, if I send something out to someone, more often than not I give it the old Word treatment before it goes, seeing as it is the de facto standard, and, as good as AppKit’s RTF to Word export is (which Mellel sensibly relies on), sometimes the results aren’t quite what you’d expect. And you don’t want a funny-looking manuscript being the thing that turns an agent or publisher off. No, you want the piss poor quality of writing to do that, at a much slower, more insidious rate.
Writer.app (of course) – Yeah, I hate the icon, too. Why don’t you do something about it and leave a comment? Or drop me a mail? I liked Khoi’s idea of a focused, ultra-focused writing environment that I went out and implemented it. I could use WriteRoom, I suppose, but I think it’s default look and feel puts me off (I know that you can change it), and Writer *really* forces you to just write forward. I do like the idea of having the Edit in WriteRoom service it provides, though.
All icons copyright or so to their respective developers. Especially the Writer.app one.