yWriter5, for Windows PCs:
Recommended instead for Mac OS/X users:
"Wow!! This program is AMAZING! I started the day overwhelmed, with a million notes in different places on my laptop and iPad, a million ideas in my head and no idea about how to corral it all into a cogent manuscript. After trying a few other writing programs that just didn't click with me, I installed yWriter5 and started organizing my myriad ideas into concrete chapters and scenes. I ended the day with a highly organized project, a definite sense of where I'm going and an enormous amount of confidence that I can see this book through to its end. I must have shaken my head in wondrous disbelief five times today, as I used this software - "What?! I can just drag the characters and locations into the scene?!" "Wow - from what I just typed, that detailed story board just created itself?!" Love it, love it. Thanks a million for creating something so user friendly, and then for offering it to us gratis." J.L.
"After a long struggle with Word, I downloaded yWriter & yBook, and I just want to say "thanks" for a set of tools that think the way writers do. Two years with Word yielded nothing. In the last six months, I have a finished work. Right now, I'm looking at 842 pages, no wrestling with 'feature glut', just so many headaches gone. The essence of genius beyond sweat is simplicity. Thank you for for making my life easier. Well done." P
"After 20 years in the IT business I've gained a deep appreciation for programs that set out to do a specific job, then do it better than anything else. yWriter5 fits in that category." D.J.
"Bottom Line: If you're writing a novel, YWriter is what you need." Full review here
"In my 26 years as a software developer and consultant it is very rare to discover an application with such a wonderful combination of fit-for-purpose design, usability and efficiency." D.B.
"For a long time I have looked for a tool to assist me in my sermon preparation to no avail. Well, my search is now over! I have made a new translation called sermon 5. May God the Almighty prosper you." Bro. N., Mombasa (Absolutely true - Bro. N emailed me a translation file called Sermon5 which is now available in the Languages menu. Selecting this translation converts yWriter into a tool for preparing sermons instead of novels!)
"I ignored the idea that your software is for novel writers and started writing my project with it. Chapters and notes were easy to put together. (Go figure ... a product that actually works and is easy to use.) I used the scene concept to organize concepts in the chapters. For what I am doing there are too many organization tools, but they don't seem to be getting in the way. The typing goals and ability to reorganize my work is ... well I cannot express the feeling. Having been involved in MANY technical writing projects, I have never seen software like this. How many 100's of hours we have wasted in the overhead of writing that your software makes so easy? Thanks!" M.C.
yWriter has been reviewed in PC Magazine. (4.5/5 stars)
"yWriter is the single most important piece of software I've downloaded in years. It's allowed me to juggle all kinds of writing projects and break them down into pieces I can manage and track. I now approach big writing projects without fear because your software helps me know I'll finish them no matter how crazy real life gets. Offering it for free is a generous gift to authors everywhere." IN
"I find this software just the right thing at just the right time. I have been writing several books using Microsoft Journal and I often felt that there should be a better way to manage my projects. I'm presently converting all my books over to your software. I normally jump from book to book when I feel I have something add to it. This software allows me to jump around much faster and it also allows me to jot down notes instantly. I now fine myself writing notes much more than I ever did due to the convenience of Ywriter." JP
"I find ywriter to be out of this world. It is bug free, smooth, sleek, does what it is suppose to do and even more. I use it more frequently than I use Word, and it is so good you can use it to organize all kinds of things, not only novels. Congratulations again for such a brilliant piece of software. I am amazed how you can do something that is actually much better than the stuff huge corporations make." C
"I too have tried many, many other applications, both freeware and commercial, but not one comes anywhere near yWriter for ease of use. It is the only writing program that hasn't left me wanting to throw the computer through the nearest window in frustration. Thank you for a great product, and thanks for making it free for others to use." P.R.
"I researched all the standard writing programs, demoed a few, was singularly unimpressed, and somehow happened on yWriter. It is not only easily the most useful of the lot, it is, remarkably, free. For this undertaking you will no doubt receive great karmic rewards, in addition to my heartfelt gratitude." P
"I just downloaded yWriter 4 and began working on it last night. I've had writers block for well over a year now. I've tried many writing programs, knowing that my problem was the overwhelming task of organizing the project I want to write. None of the other softwares worked. But finally, one that gives order to the chaos of my thoughts. I can't even begin to verbalize the relief I feel in working with this program. Thank you so much." A. L.
"I just downloaded ywriter3 and I am in heaven. This is by far the best software I've run into, anywhere! Pacing problems become immediately apparently, as do POV issues I didn't know were there! Thank you, thank you, thank you!" Heather
"I downloaded yWriter3 last week and just wanted to let you know I consider it to be the best writing outlining tool there is. I've tried evaluations of several other products but always let them lapse because they didn't 'feel' right. I spent about an hour with yWriter3 and then moved the outline of my current screenplay into it - my stock of 5x3 index cards could become a thing of the past." R. F.
"I want to tell you what a pleasure it is to use Ywriter 3. I've looked at several other major software programs and came away convinced that they are useless because of "over engineering" that requires every minor detail before you can do anything. Thanks for Ywriter 3 and keep it clean!" D.S.
"I have been working on a novel for about seven years now-computer crashes, discs with my work saved on them broke, and it was so frustrating to have to start ALL OVER AGAIN. But with yWriter, I can break my book down into chapters, or even paragraphs, and writing one, or editing one, makes me feel like I am accomplishing something, rather than adding a few words here and there, knowing I still have a hundred pages to go." K
"I just wanted to send you a quick thankyou and congratulations for building the best text editor I have had the pleasure of using. yWriter has a wonderful way of organising different files for the same story (and the fractured way I write makes that incredibly useful); it is simple, clear and effective. And for it being a free program, I salute you." H. C., UK.
"To be honest I've tried almost every product on the market, free demos, and nothing comes close to the simple honest efficiency of yWriter.Seems to me this software was written by someone who trully understands the writing process and the others simply claim to. So many programs try to interfere with everything, some even seem to want to write the book for you. All I ever wanted was a WP and an effective organisation system for characters and scenes.
Every now and again you come across something which you find so amazing, you are compelled to write and say so. This is just one of these times. I'm stunned it's free, because it's brilliant and I'm sure like myself loads of others hugely appreciate this great software." K.W.
"Kudos to you, I love your program! I started writing a story using the "big" word processor, saving it chapter-by-chapter and completely losing track of what I had written in each chapter. When I went to change things around a little, it was a major headache maintaining continuity from one chapter to the next. Your software is intuitive, easy to use, and keeps things so organized that even major plot changes are manageable. Thank you for taking the time and effort to make such a useful program." Ted L.
"I downloaded yWriter at the end of October to help me get through National Novel Writing Month. Honestly, I don't think I would have finished without it. Thank you for writing such a great piece of software." Nate
yWriter2 is an amazing piece of software that does exactly what it's supposed to, and does it well. I've tried various word processors for my writing, as well as WriteItNow and other programs tailored to writers. None of these soluations can match yWriter for sheer ease of use. yWriter frees me from all the niggly little things I have to do to make a word processor work for me, and allows me to concentrate on what's really important: my writing. Thanks so much for an amazing product!" Tammy Cravit, California
LJ user syrinxkat posted 'first impressions' of yWriter on their blog
I downloaded yWriter and am finding it to be a great help. I always lose track of my projects whenever they get above a couple of thousand words but this is brilliant. Everything is easily accessible and I can follow the different threads with no problem at all. I haven't lost track of the viewpoint and tense once which is amazing for me. I have pretty much doubled my daily word count because I don't have to spend time working out what the hell is going on and what I've already written! Thanks for making this freeware. Jacquin Sffworld.com
Not only have I gotten the hang of YWriter in two short days, but I've actually been able to assemble a book-like project in it. Do you realize what this means? I've been writing scenes for two seemingly unrelated projects. However, yesterday I combined them in YWriter and found I have six pretty good chapters of a book that was in the back of my brain, spilling out through my fingers in dribs and drabs. Only, I couldn't see the whole, ya know? Then I downloaded YWriter and suddenly---wow! A book! In chapters! And scenes that flow ... from one to the other! Who knew? I will be recommending this awesome thing to my friends. Thanks a bunch! DC
"yWriter is one of the most cohesive freeware programs for writers. With helpful tools like a word count (doesn't just tell you your total words, but breaks it down by individual words and how many times they are used), time line, story outline, and places to write scene summaries (and viewpoints, goals, conflicts ...) yWriter guides writers through their story on their terms. It's not necessary to use the time line or scene summaries, but if that's what you're used to doing, it's there for you. This program is all about what works for you as a writer, and what methods you use to keep yourself on track and consistent. I've tried some demos of commerical software made for writers and didn't find one I liked; yWriter is what I wished those other programs would have been. Thank you for providing such an awesome program to writers (and for free too!)." Drew
"It took me 3 years to write my book. That's one year of research, one year of bloody mayhem with word processors and a whole bunch of so called "writer's software". Then I found yWriter and for the first time pulled all the notes, chapters, characters and the whole mess together, AND THIS IS FREE SOFTWARE!!! Nope, I don't know Simon from a bar of soap, and nope he hasn't offered me any incentive, or even a free copy of his Spacejock book. I just think its a bloody good piece of software and it pulled my mess of a manuscript into shape. Without it I wouldn't be sitting on a very nice contract and my Bank Manager wouldn't be offering me Monte Carlo bickies with the coffee when I go to see him.
I used yWriter to pull it all together and then exported the finished product to Open Office for final formatting and printing off. One of the bugs any aspiring writer faces is keeping track of all the versions, false starts, notes, drafts and assorted other crap we write. To all would-be writers... get a copy of Simon's program, use it and start WRITING. Unreservedly, Simon, thank you for a brilliant piece of software that is useful, works and is free. If this seems like a free plug, so be it. It is!" M.C.
"Just a quick email to thank you for yWriter. I've tried a few commercial novel writing programs in the past, but this - freeware too! - has definitely been the best - straighforward, easy to use, and at last I've managed to get everything organized and it's beginning to look and feel like a book now, rather than just a massive jumble of text files and notes. Keep up the fabulous work!" Robert W. (UK)
"I want to thank you for writing such a fabulous program! I've checked quite a lot of writing aids, including several commercial trials, and yWriter wins hands down! It's not bloated, it's comfortable and well, nice! And it supports Russian language too. Thank you!" Elwin
"I just finished my first draft of a novel and I can't thank you enough for your software. I can't believe it's free! It's a lot better then software I have paid for. Thank you very much." Sheila
"What a wonderful piece of software your yWriter program is! I have just moved my work in progress to it and like it much better than every other tool I've tried (and I've tried many!!!) for working on the first draft. The interface is simple and easy to use." Chuck H.
"Thank you for yWriter. It has been my word processor of choice for this project and has been invaluable. I don't think I'll go back to Word except for final edits for anything I write ever again." Kat (katyares.tripod.com)