Are you looking for a professional word processor that will organize your work? Scrivener is probably the most popular writing software available today.
However, there are several alternatives to Scrivener, which are equally good or perhaps better than Scrivener. This article will share such 5 Scrivener Alternatives, both paid and free, that will help you finish your next book writing project effortlessly.
If you are a regular LetterJunction reader, you must be aware that I love to review tools that claim to make writers’ lives easier. But not all are equally useful. So, I will share only those Scrivener alternatives that at least have some USP.
I will be delighted if this review helps you to choose your best book writing software. But, before that, I will share my story.
Why Did I Search For A Scrivener Alternative?
Scrivener is a hugely popular word processor developed by Literature & Latte. Indeed it is a fantastic writing tool with features suitable for any long-form writing project like book, novel, and thesis writing.
And with a single time payment of $45, it was a value for money until I started writing.
Firstly, Scrivener is a pretty difficult software for a newbie like me. It requires a steep learning curve, and I was spending more time watching the tutorials than focusing on my project.
I’m sure I’m not the only one who faced this problem. You are probably looking for a Scrivener alternative due to the same reason.
Secondly, book writing is rarely a solo writing project. Often we share our files between co-authors and editors. Scrivener doesn’t have an efficient mechanism to share live projects.
You can share projects via Dropbox accounts, but the methodology is extremely inefficient and often creates confusion between writers.
Thirdly, the compatibility issue between Mac and Windows users make projects more complicated than they are. Why as an end-user, we have to worry about these technical problems?
Last but not least, being a non-native English writer, I often rely on Grammarly for regular editing and proofreading. Unfortunately, Scrivener does not support Grammarly. It’s a long-standing problem that has not been addressed even in the latest version of Scrivener.
I am aware of ProWritingAid, which is supported by Scrivener, but ProWritingAid is not as efficient as Grammarly.
Scrivener is absolutely a perfect writing tool if you are a savvy writer who doesn’t require peers’ help. However, for others, there are better alternatives than Scrivener.
Best Paid Scrivener Alternatives
The internet is full of options. Below are 3 best-paid alternatives to Scrivener.
Novlr is a cloud-based novel writing software developed to keep your writing process comfortable. The aesthetically pleasing interface is clean and allows you to breathe easily.
So, what makes Novlr special?
Writing is the main focus of this Scrivener alternative. A minimalist, distraction-free environment will definitely attract your attention. Moreover, it has an ambient dependent color setting, which makes writing even more relaxing.
Novlr supports Chapter and Scene organization. This facility helps you to break down your writing into small parts. Moreover, it allows you to keep track of the plot and characters. If you are switching from Scrivener, you will be very familiar with these features.
Novlr includes an inbuilt grammar enhancement and writing style suggestion tool. Though the tool performs decently, it is not at par with Grammarly.
Anyway, having an inbuilt proofreading tool is always a bonus.
Another feature that makes Novlr unique is its analytics. It allows you to keep track of your regular progress. Daily and monthly goals keep the writer motivated for long writing projects.
It provides you a facility to sync your work to Google Drive and Dropbox. You can also share a read-only version of your manuscript with your co-authors and editors.
Other worth mentioning features are autosaving facility, working from anywhere, access to expert advice, and the ability to design book covers right from the editor.
No doubt, all these features come with a price tag. A monthly subscription costs $10 per month, and for an annual subscription, you need to pay $100 per year.
Try Novlr free for 2 weeks.
The interface is so intuitively designed that you don’t need any learning curve. Moreover, an introduction screen makes you comfortable with all the essential features.
Once you start writing, it automatically keeps on saving your documents. Version history control makes the version management very easy.
Do you want to collaborate with co-authors? LivingWriter can take care of such situations also. It allows you to share your live chapters or the whole story with your peers. Moreover, you can restrict the view, comment, and editing permissions of your co-authors.
This is the most complete and hassle-free sharing facility I have ever used in such software.
Like Scrivener, it also supports chapter-wise notes, subchapters, prebuilt templates, and virtual cardboard. All these features help to organize your concepts, plots, and characters in a single place.
Another unique feature of this modern book-writing software is “smart text.”
Does LivingWriter support Grammarly? Yes!
The only drawback of this software is that it does not have a desktop app. However, with the advent of the internet, I don’t think it will be a major problem for most of us.
LivingWriter is available for a monthly subscription of $10. A yearly subscription costs $8/month.
Enjoy no commitment 30 days free trial with access to all its features.
3. Dabble Writer
Another cloud-based writer, Dabble, is the third entry in my list.
I have found that the developer has tried hard to make the software comfortable for writers. As it is not overloaded with features, you will be able to start writing quickly without getting distracted by features.
Sometimes, it may feel like a stripped-down version of a very popular word processor.
If you are switching from Scrivener, which has almost all the features that you may or may not require, you will find Dabble writer to be more productive with limited features.
Another aspect that attracted my attention is its strong community support. The forum is really active and always suggests new features and improvements.
Other features that I should mention here are NaNoWriMo word tracker, Cloud Sync, Prologues and epilogues, and inbuilt Spelling and Grammar checking tool. However, the grammar checker is not very efficient.
When writing this review, Dabble does not support versioning and co-authoring facilities, but they are planning to incorporate those features in future updates.
With all these features, Dabble subscription costs between $10/month and $20/month. However, considering its features, I would say it is a little expensive compared to other products.
Best Free Alternatives to Scrivener
Often we want to practice our skills without much expense. Let’s have a look to find the best free Scrivener alternatives.
Manuskript is an open-source word-processing software for novelists, writers, students, and journalists. It has almost all the features that you may require during your writing with a clean interface.
It provides an Outliner that can hierarchically organize your thoughts. Distraction-free mode improves your productivity by cutting all the clutter.
Set your writing goal in either word count or time to keep yourself motivated during long project hours. Another worth mentioning feature is “Novel assistant.” It allows you to grow your idea into a coherent plot using a popular method known as the “snowflake method.”
If you are looking for a free alternative to Scrivener, you must try it once. However, don’t expect cloud collaboration and other advanced features in this software.
2. Quoll Writer
Quoll Writer is a power-packed word processing software for Windows users. I have always been searching for a free writing software that matches the functionalities of Scrivener, and Quoll Writer is a perfect fit.
Quoll Writer provides some features that are not even available in some paid software. A minimalist interface helps you to focus more on your projects. Easy chapter and subchapter management, annotation, and asset creation tab help you to manage your project in one place.
A highly configurable full-screen mode is ideal for distraction-free writing.
Quoll Writer includes a “Problem Finder” that can identify several writing issues. Moreover, you can configure these rules according to your interest.
Surprisingly, this free software lets you share your work, chat and comment with your editor.
The only drawback of this software is: it is limited to Windows users only. So, if you are a Windows user, look no further. I’m sure Quoll Writer will be helpful for you.
As a writer, we try to utilize every moment to produce quality content. Even when we are commuting between cities, visiting friends, or waiting for a client in a coffeehouse, we work everywhere.
Therefore, our writing tool should be user-friendly and productive. Scrivener is a feature-rich product that needs a design reshaping. In this article, I have mentioned five such software that solves problems related to Scrivener and fit any budget.
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