Text editors for distraction free writing

Have you ever tried to write something in your text editor and felt distracted because of all the eye candy you have on your desktop ? Did you, at those times, even for a second, yearn for a distraction free environment on your machine – something like a clean and simple interface sans all the distracting things on your Desktop ? Then this post is for you. Here are a collection of text editors which allow you to write without any distraction what so ever.  Some of these text editors are platform or OS specific but some of them are OS independent.

  • DarkCopy – This is a free web based text editor for anyone who enjoys the simplicity of a typewriter, and wants to increase productivity by focusing only on writing. Go ahead and try it! Simply start typing and toggle to full-screen editing mode to clear your mind.
  • Q10 – This is a simple but powerful text editor designed and built with writers in mind. It works only on Windows, perhaps will work on Linux with the aid of Wine. Apart from the distraction free full screen mode, it displays live text statistics, timer alarm, is portable, has an in-built spell checker, even has typing sound effects to give the effect of typing on a typewriter. It is a freeware and is tiny in size. All in all a great piece of software for writers.
  • WriteRoom – For people who enjoy the simplicity of a typewriter, but live in the digital world. WriteRoom is a full-screen writing environment. Unlike the cluttered word processors you’re used to, WriteRoom is just about you and your text. Costs you $$ and requires Mac OS X 10.4 or later.
  • JDarkRoom – This is a popular, simple full-screen text file editor  developed using Java language. It has none of the usual bells and whistles that might distract you from the job in hand. If you are writing a novel, essay, thesis or just need to be able to concentrate on your writing, then JDarkRoom may help you.
  • MSWord Clone of WriteRoom – Amit Agarwal of labnol blog fame describes a way of getting the writeroom editor effect by re-configuring MS-Word.
  • PyRoom – This is a free and Free alternative to WriteRoom. It is  written in Python+GTK.
  • WestEdit – This is a full screen, old-school text editor and typewriter. WestEdit is inspired by WriteRoom for the Mac. The main goal with the WestEdit text editor is to keep it simple and free. No fancy functions. To run it though you need Windows XP and .NET installed on your machine.
  • Linux Console Vi, Pico, Nano … You name it – That is right. If you are used to working on Linux in run level 3 or below, you have a console only workspace and it has the same effect of using WriteRoom editor. In console, you can use a plethora of editors and concentrate on what you write.
  • Liquid Story Binder XE – This is a uniquely designed word processor for professional and aspiring authors, poets, and novelists. Writing software for those who require the editing ability of a commercial text editor as well as a document tracking system. It is for those who want the freedom to create, outline and revise but are tired of losing track of their work. It also features a full screen mode which allow you to do your writing without any distraction. But it is a shareware although they allow you to test it out for 30 days and see if it fits your needs before you shell out money.
  • Online Appwriter – This text editor runs in your web browser and does not need to be installed on your machine. Just visit the website and start writing. It even saves your work on your machine on a regular basis. So you don’t even have to remember to save your work.
  • RubyRoom – This is a full screen text editor written in the Ruby language. As with other editors listed above, this text editor also aids writers by cutting down on distraction. It has a lot of shortcut keys which make it a favourable contender in the distraction free text editing business. Above all, this text editor is open source. RubyRoom requires ruby-gnome and ruby installed on your machine.
  • QuietWrite – This is another text editor that aims to provide you a distraction free text editing experience. It auto saves your work in regular intervals thus letting you concentrate on your writing.

Last updated on May 6, 2011

One thought on “Text editors for distraction free writing

  1. So glad I found this!

    Recently discovered Mint, and have been looking for equivalent apps to some of my Mac apps. PyRoom runs great on my system, and they mercifully have their repositories listed on their downloads page.

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