I thought today I’d give people an idea of the tools I use to keep track not only of my writing progress, but my workloads, my promo activities and my To Do tasks. I use a variety of applications, some paid, some free (although sadly there are less of the free ones for obvious reasons) and every one is worth the spend. I’m a fan of the old saying ‘Work Smarter, not Harder.’ Time is a precious commodity.

SCRIVENER

I’ve been late to the party with using this although I’ve had the application for a number of years now. It looked a little daunting to me. I’m using it now, and while I’m still a bit awkward with it, it’s doing what I need it to do. My biggest gripe about this though is that it’s not web based. It’s a local application and needs to be installed wherever you want to use it. It’s great for keeping things in one place, like snippets of future scenes, plot ideas and images. And the test snippets can be written stand alone and then used wherever you want them.

final draft

I used to use CELTX which was free, but when I started developing screen plays seriously, I needed something with a little more OOMPH. Final Draft works beautifully and it’s easy to navigate. It’s also used by my writing partners in the USA, so we get to be to collaborate easily.

CLICKUP

This was a gem of a find. I’d been searching for years for something that gave me this sort of functionality. The designers have built ‘The One App to Replace Them All’ – Tasks, Docs, Goals, and Chat. It’s multi function, including Process Management and Team Collaborations, and they update it with new features every week. I was using Trello, but Clickup is so much better. I am loving it.

MAILBIRD

If you’re like me, performing a number of job roles and needing to manage multiple email addresses, this is your app. It’s easy to use, easy to add different accounts without all that messy having to know your domain, the server numner, user name, etc and all that techy stuff, and allows me to manage all my email accounts in one place. It also updates features regularly.

MAILERLITE

I was using Mailchimp for my newsletters until it got too expensive. I changed to Mailerlite, and while it took me a little while to get used to it, I am very happy I did. It offers much the same functionality as Mailchimp, is cheaper (for now) and lets me send out wonderful newsletters that are easy to construct.

ALLAUTHOR

One of the best and most diverse author promotion sites out there. New features constantly added, their team very ready to respond to questions and all in all, I find this site invaluable in making my teasers, scheduling tweets, advertising, creating quality book mock-ups and gifs and a host of other features. This is one of the teasers they made for me.

KIZOA

This takes a bit of time to learn, but it produces amazing book trailers and videos, and is a go to resource for me. I’ve made some wonderful book trailers using this application.

pacemaker

This app allows me to create a goal driven entry for my Work in Progress (WIP) and map my progress, change it as circumstances change and have a method of seeing how productive I am (or aren’t). It’s my work productivity bible and without it, I’d be stuck.

ADAZING/AUTHOR ACADEMY/AUTHORLAB

A great source of free book mock ups and cover templates, along with a host of other features. Along with this is the Author Academy. For a fee, you can explore and use loads of material and advice related to the publishing world. Author Lab is brilliant too but a little expensive. I was lucky enough to get it when it was only $40, on a special offer. It gives me more time to do what I should be doing – writing.

FYLE

I cannot tell you how much this app helps me when it comes to keeping track of my expenses, royalty statements and income. It’s another invaluable one. You create a specific tax year report, or expenses/income folder, email your receipts into the relevant one from your email account, and voila! It creates a report that can be downloaded as Excel or CSV, without you having to do any work. My accountant loves it – he has access to my account and all I do is let him know it’s all there and completed and he uses it to file my returns. If he wants to print something, he can, otherwise it’s all available for audit online.

So there you have it. I hope this proves useful to you, I know they certainly make my life easier. And you’ll end up having more of what’s below to spoil yourself rotten…Me Time.

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