Skip to main content is a Distraction-Free Writing App

Want a free word processing app which gets out of the way of your writing? Then check out (or Write! as it is called on its website), which just crossed my desk today.

While there is no shortage of paid and free writing apps, offers several features that could turn your head. I’ve been playing around with a beta version of the app today, and even though the complete lack of a frame continues to distract me I can see a few features I like – and a couple I really appreciate.

To start with, covers most of the basics: copy, paste, a multi-language spellchecker, word count, etc. There’s no find+replace yet, but there is a find function (which is case sensitive and is supposed to support RegEx), an excess of keyboard shortcuts, auto-complete, and an optional navigation bar in the right margin.

The main view is your usual window (sans frame) but there is also a full screen mode and a portrait mode (for those with screens rotated 90 degrees.)


Do you see the word "Article" at the bottom left of the window? That’s the word count and productivity tracker.

In addition to the basics, lets you open multiple documents in tabs. It will also save your state should you accidentally close the app. And best of all, you can clone the document you’re working on and open it in a new tab.

Even though the gray details and text on a stark white background is beginning to give me a headache, I do like the app and it’s worth checking out. Format support is limited to txt, RTF, and ODT, so this app isn’t for everyone, but this could prove useful.

Have you tried it? Let me know what you think in the comments.



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anothername December 8, 2014 um 9:56 pm

Atlantis is the best word processor for writers. You can configure it to do all that and much more.

Nate Hoffelder December 8, 2014 um 10:00 pm

I haven’t tried that before, thanks. (It’s not free, though.)

I’m looking at the features now. Yech, what a horrible website. It’s like 1995 never died.

anothername December 9, 2014 um 7:37 am

There is a free version but it lacks the customization version I need. It also allows you to publish straight to epub.

James M. Bowers December 9, 2014 um 1:44 am

Sounds interesting. I’ll check it out. I usually use Writemonkey for distraction free writing though:

Nate Hoffelder December 9, 2014 um 6:12 am

That’s new to me, thanks.

I usually stick with Wordpad when I need a basic writing app, but I think I’ll try some alternatives.

Woelf Dietrich December 9, 2014 um 6:18 am

I use iA Writer and have had no complaints so far. It’s crisp and clean and as distraction free as you can get:

anothername December 9, 2014 um 7:40 am

The concept of a distraction-free writing tool on a computer with an internet connection is an oxymoron. But a tool to disable internet for fixed periods at a time would be useful.

Nate Hoffelder December 9, 2014 um 5:26 pm

This is true. But even if the internet is blocked, there are still all the physical objects in the same room as the writer.

anothername December 9, 2014 um 5:42 pm

The internet is the greatest distraction in history and created by the devil itself.

Ralph Hummel December 10, 2014 um 7:13 am

I have done the excercise a number of times on checking how much time in a 15 hour waking period I have spent unproductively browsing the net. I was shocked with what I have found out: On avergae I have spent more than 6 hours dawdling about on the net! 40% of my time! What a waste!
Jesus, I am a freelancer and I just could not afford to waste that much time. So I got myself a nice piece of software that will block the net acces during certain periods a day and will only allow those apps that I need to productively work during these times to access the net.
In my first two months of using the app, I got more working time out of my days, was able to spend more time with my family and my income went up.
Go for it!

anothername December 9, 2014 um 7:43 am

Word processors are an area where Windows blows Linux/Android/Chrome out of the water. Mac too probably. But Word sucks. Maybe that’s what people mean by "distraction-free." It’s not Word with all those bullshit buttons I don’t use and with the ability to change the background dark so I’m not looking at a light-bulb.

Ralph Hummel December 10, 2014 um 7:15 am

You know, in Word 2013 you can completely hide the toolbars for distraction free writing. And if you need them, you can bring them back on.
Granted, not a free App, but it has become very much more productive for me that way using it.

Chris Meadows December 9, 2014 um 9:15 am

For most of my writing, I tend to use either Scrivener (because it has so many amazingly useful features) or Google Docs (for when I want to share what I’m writing with other people as I write it). For any word-processory tasks not covered by one of those, there’s LibreOffice.

Nate Hoffelder December 9, 2014 um 4:07 pm

I just use Wordpad or LibreOffice. What can I say, I’m lazy.

Jason van Gumster December 9, 2014 um 4:38 pm

The bulk of my writing to date has been in LibreOffice. However, I’ve been toying with Remarkable ( and writing directly in markdown syntax. It’s pretty comfortable… to the point that I’m tempted to use it on my next project.

Mark December 15, 2014 um 5:27 am

Best fullscreen distraction-free editor for windows could be Q10. Adjustable background and font, displays word count at bottom, along with target word count, time, name of file, etc. All adjustable. Haven’t found anything better for just focusing and writing. Free, didn’t I mention that? Something similar for Linux is called DarkRoom. It’s really funny because I bought two Android devices to write on within last year and while they are fine, I’ll get a lightweight Win machine as soon as possible and switch back. Happy typing.

Rea March 26, 2015 um 3:20 am

Does not set the font size and background color !!

What's the Best Way to Create a Distraction-Free Writing Environment? | The Digital Reader October 3, 2017 um 4:45 pm

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