13 Replies Latest reply: Jan 27, 2010 9:50 AM by Rick Lang
Macsastic Level 4 (3,380 points)
I'm looking for a shareware program that will let me write a book. Macs have everything for photos, music, movies, making music, but I can't think of anything, any program that would let me write an ongoing post that will in the end be a book I am wanting to write.

Is there any programs out there besides MS Word, that I could use? I hate anything and everything Microsoft and refuse to send even a penny to Gates and company.

iMac 3.06 Aluminum 21.5 inch,MacBook Pro, White iPhone3GS, Mac OS X (10.5.6), Everything Mac is an addiction to me.
  • Ho Lee MACkeral Level 4 (2,185 points)
  • Macsastic Level 4 (3,380 points)
    Thank you. Looks like just what I need.
  • kguy Level 2 (415 points)
    If you don't already have it, Pages works great. It is part of the iWork suite from apple.

    One nice feature is that you are able to blank out ALL of the screen while you write, so there are no distractions.

    Also, since it has header support, etc. It is easy to generate indexes or tables of contents.

    Read about it here.


    Message was edited by: kguy
  • den.thed Level 7 (26,017 points)
  • Kenichi Watanabe Level 7 (33,189 points)
    For just +processing words+ (aka "writing"), you can even use the pre-installed TextEdit.

    It uses the built-in Mac OS X spell-checking and dictionary features. You can change fonts and formatting in the typical ways. It has find and replace features. You can save files in the plain text, standard RTF (rich text format), PDF, or even Microsoft Word format.

    What more do you need for writing (without some bloated mega-program with ten toolbars getting in the way of your creativity)?
  • Thomas Strange Level 2 (280 points)

    I actually worked as a writer and am currently working on my sixth novel. I have found nothing better on the Mac than Pages itself and I tend to collect word processors. Pages has a clutter free interface and in full screen mode it is a joy to use.

  • Macsastic Level 4 (3,380 points)
    I love OpenOffice! It's a very capable word processor! Thank you for the tip.
  • cyvi937 Level 1 (100 points)
    The best thing - hands down - for writing happens to be Mac-only and it's called Scrivener. You have to pay for it but it's well worth it if you're serious about writing a book.
  • Rick Lang Level 4 (1,230 points)
    I was just about to purchase Storyist as I had had the trial version of it and been pretty happy with it. I wanted something that would export to Final Draft which Storyist supports. I see Scrivener has been updated significantly since I looked at it and does include export to Final Draft. But I suspect it's only exporting the rudimentary screenplay from Scrivener to Final Draft. Am I correct or will it also attempt to export a novel into Final draft as Storyist does. That's the feature I would like to have.
  • cyvi937 Level 1 (100 points)
    I'm not sure why anyone would want to do it - export a long text project into a screenplay program, that is - but, yes, Scrivener supports export to FD. In fact, it can do it in two ways: the Export function (for individual parts of the MS) or the Compile Manuscript function (which will compile the whole thing into an FDX file).
  • Rick Lang Level 4 (1,230 points)
    That's very good thanks. I have downloaded Scrivener. The reason for importing would be easy startup of a screenplay treatment based on the original novel's components. Sounds like it is capable. Would be amazing one day if dialogue was imported into a screenplay format too with assignment to the appropriate characters if possible but I don't expect that! Thanks again for the recommendation. Will certainly be interesting to adjust to the pageless presentation of material as I am used to Storyist which displays perfectly formatted pages as you type/review.
  • cyvi937 Level 1 (100 points)
    Yes, see how you go with it. With Scrivener the emphasis is definitely on content rather than formatting, which is something that only needs to be handled at the end of the whole process by a word processing program.
  • Rick Lang Level 4 (1,230 points)
    Thank you for your comments. It is an excellent product for its intended purpose to prepare a text manuscript. After reviewing Scrivener thoroughly, I decided that I still preferred the greater emphasis on word processing and greater utility of page layout capabilities (including graphics) found in Storyist, so I would recommend others consider Storyist too to find which is a the better fit for your needs.