I wrote this post in OmmWriter, an application that creates a quiet, uncluttered writing space. Just a simple, full page of blank writing surface, a few basic fonts, and little else.
The idea is to be able to write without being distracted by Facebook, email, or other web sites or applications. It gives you a quiet place to be alone with your thoughts, so you can get more writing done in less time.
I remember going to the library in high school to write papers I didn’t want to write. Once I settled down and resigned myself to getting started, the quiet helped me to focus. Applications like OmmWriter create a similar environment.
On the other hand, I usually don’t need a quiet setting to write. In fact, like many people, I enjoy having some distractions. I think that’s why you see so many people writing or doing homework at Starbucks.
Also, when I write I usually refer to notes or articles I’ve saved or have open in a browser. Being in a writing app that takes over the full screen means I have to close the app to get to those notes or articles.
I do enjoy writing in OmmWriter, especially when I’m writing about something I know a lot about or have strong feelings about. The writing is quicker and flows more freely. What I mean is that I’m not so much engaged in the act of writing as I am in connecting my thoughts with my keyboard. For first drafts especially, it’s a more intuitive, natural process, and in some ways, the writing is better.
Applications like this are a good idea for writers who need that quiet space where they can let their creativity flow. If you ever find yourself unable to settle down and get into your writing, this is a good solution.
I’ve tried other applications like this. Some are browser based, some, like OmmWriter, you download. OmmWriter offers a feature I like, background colors and sounds (music) they have found to be conducive to writing. They provide a sort of “white noise” that helps me focus better.
OmmWriter is free and there is also a paid version (donation-ware) with more colors and sounds. I have used it off and on since I first downloaded it a month ago and I will continue to use it. It’s easier than driving to the library, and a lot cheaper than Starbucks.