It might be because I’m a former Apple employee, but I truly believe there is indeed an app for that.
So often, I see authors struggling with some aspect or other of self-publishing, and I immediately think of an app that could ease their woes.
However, so many writers are resistant to change. I think there is something in the romantic image of a writer that needs nothing more than a pen and a pad to get by.
The fact of the matter is, self-publishing is tough, and can fill the schedule of even the most disciplined person. I’ve found the following apps have made a huge difference to my own author life, and I’m sure they will help you as well.
Perhaps the key to self-publishing success, other than talent, can be summarized in a single word – organization.
As any good writing coach will tell you, self-publishing involves a lot of moving pieces. A book project has many phases, tasks, and deadlines. Keeping everything on track can be enough to test a person’s sanity. Thankfully, Trello has proved a gamechanger for me.
Trello allows you to quickly and easily organize projects, workloads, collaborations, and other tasks. Some of the main reasons I love it include –
- Very clean, user-friendly interface
- Great mobile app that syncs instantly via the cloud
- Integrates well with Google – allows you to sync with Google Calendar, for example
- Easy to assign and keep track of deadlines
- Easy to invite and work with collaborators on certain tasks and projects
I started using Trello for a book project I was working on, and I now use it to organize almost every area of my life! If you feel you could be better organized, and manage your author projects more efficiently, I’d urge you to give Trello a try.
People who know me well are bored of this suggestion by now, but I keep making it, because I truly believe in the power of Scrivener.
For those who don’t know, Scrivener is a fully-featured writing tool. It allows you to research, write, edit, format, and export in the same software environment.
Some of the reasons I feel every writer should give Scrivener a go include –
- Fully customizable with community-created resources such as Scrivener templates. This is a great help with structuring longer projects such as novels.
- Always improving. Scrivener is on its third full version and it is always getting better and taking user feedback into account.
- Great project management capabilities. Scrivener makes it easy to set targets for writing sessions and whole projects, reducing the time needed to write a book. It’s easy to monitor them and ensure you are sticking to your schedule.
If you’re new to Scrivener, expect a bit of a learning curve. However, please persist. It’s well worth it and Scrivener truly can help almost every area of your author life, whether you’re writing a book, a play, or a blog post about meals you can cook with a deep fryer. Literally anything!
Social media marketing is often a divisive topic among authors.
On the one hand, some authors love being able to interact directly with their readers. They enjoy the ability to engage and share content they find to be meaningful directly with their audience.
On the other, social media can be time consuming. For those who aren’t natural users of social media, it can be difficult to learn the various platforms. Even worse, a lot of authors spend a lot of time without seeing much benefit in return.
I’m a big advocate of using HootSuite or another social media management app to ease your stress. I love using it because –
- It allows me to batch schedule content in one go. This means I can program in a month of Facebook updates, or Tweets, in a single session.
- I can manage multiple social platforms from a single app. This reduces the need to log in to lots of different apps, increasing my efficiency.
- It has cool features like auto schedule – which chooses a time to share my updates when they are likely to get the most engagement
You can greatly increase your efficiency and effectiveness when it comes to author social media marketing by using an app such as Hootsuite. I’d urge you to try it for yourself.
Essential Author Apps – My Final Thoughts
Thanks for checking out my guide to apps which greatly enhance the process of self-publishing. To recap, I suggest –
- Using Trello for project organization and management
- Using Scrivener to write in a more efficient and effective way
- Using HootSuite to manage multiple social platforms quickly and easily
This is just scratching the surface, but it’s something to get you started. If you’d like to see a part 2 where I share other apps which will help authors’ lives run smoother, please let me know in the comments!