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Are you a Linux user with a passion for writing? If so, check out these essential tools for the job.
Writing is a key skill in the modern world, whether it’s directly how you make your living or not. Whether it’s writing memos or emailing clients, most jobs include at least some use of the written word. Even outside of work, more and more communication is moving to the written word. Don’t rush through these things – take your time and get them right. Develop writing as a skill, because it will reward you. But it’s a lot easier to do if you have the proper tools.
These free writing tools aren’t primarily for writing, though. They are for laying content out on a page to be printed. If you’re writing for a website or an email, or just aren’t yet concerned about layout, they do way more than you need. That’s why I like FocusWriter, which offers a minimal interface without sacrificing on features.
Repeating the same word while writing is problematic. Add some variety by using a Thesaurus. A plethora of online options exist, but if you want something hosted locally on your computer check out Artha. This simple program runs quickly so you can get back to your writing after finding the word you need.
You can almost certainly find Artha in your distro’s repositories right now, so go ahead and install it. Ubuntu users can simply click here to install Artha. Users of other distros can find Artha installation instructions here.
TomBoy or Zim
It’s important as a writer to keep you thoughts organized. A personal wiki can help a lot, giving you a place to collect ideas and organize them with cross-links. TomBoy, a Linux note-taking app, is installed by default on Ubuntu and is an excellent application for storing ideas.
If you don’t like the way TomBoy works, check out Zim, a desktop wiki. It’s a desktop wiki, but different from TomBoy in many ways. If you like using wikis on the web you’ll love this tool.
Plus: it’s named after the single greatest cartoon alien of all time.
We mention Dropbox more than enough here at MakeUseOf, but there’s a reason for that – it’s awesome. If you’re a writer primarily using Linux, it or something like it is almost essential.
Dropbox can automatically sync your writing between your computers, making it essential if you own more than one device. Even if you possess only a single computer you’ll want to use Dropbox, because it automatically backs up your work to the cloud every time you save it. Even better is that you can revert to a previous version of the file, within the past 30 days, anytime. This is great if you accidentally delete a large chunk of text and click “save.”
I do most of my writing for this and other blogs on Linux, and find these tools indispensable. Together they make my workflow what it is, and I’m extremely grateful to the developers of all of them.
While researching this article I stumbled upon Writing On Linux, a blog dedicated to outlining Linux tools for writers. Be sure to check that blog out for more cool ideas, but be aware that updates are sparse.
Do you have any other cool free writing tools for Linux? Let us know about them in the comments below, because we love learning from our readers.