4 Online Tools For Better Writing

Editorial

Great writing is the backbone of every great publication. It's also one of the must time consuming skills to develop. It takes a lot of time, effort, natural ability and good editing to produce a well written articles with a consistent voice and engaging perspectives. While there's no shortcut to cultivating engaging styles, there are online writer's tools that help you develop sharper and more consistent writing in your publication. Even if your magazine is only available in print, use these four tech tools to refine your writing and let your stories shine.

Grammarly

Microsoft Word has decent editing software that will help you spot common grammar and spelling mistakes. If you're serious about improving your content, though, you need a more robust app.

Grammarly makes it relatively easy for you to edit your content for any audience. It has a gigantic dictionary that includes technical jargon that may be useful when writing for specialized fields. For instance, if you write content for a healthcare journal, Microsoft Word will tell you that "glioma" is misspelled. Grammarly knows that "glioma" is a common type of brain tumor. The more niche your subject matter, the more you will appreciate Grammarly's advanced vocabulary.

Grammarly also has tools that will help you choose better words by suggesting word pairs, pointing out overused phrases and flagging repetitive words. It's exactly what you need to keep your writing fresh and unique.

The free version of Grammarly corrects spelling and looks for 150 grammar mistakes. The Premium version gives you vocabulary suggestions, genre-specific writing style checks and a plagiarism detector.

Hemingway

Experienced publication writers know that they need articles that appeal to people who read at different levels. It doesn't make sense for you to publish general articles with long sentences and uncommon words. Dense writing with complex phrases will only discourage some readers from reading—and sharing—your content.

Hemingway helps you write straightforward prose that appeals to a wider audience. It does this by finding sentences that it considers difficult o read. The app also identifies passive voice and phrases that have simpler alternatives.

Hemingway also gives you a grade and measures your writing's readability. Having a score makes it easy to decide whether you need to spend more time editing the content.

You can use the web-based version of Hemingway for free. If you use it often, you can buy a desktop copy for $19.99.

AP Stylebook Online

You can buy an updated copy of the AP Stylebook each year for about $20. The print version, however, gives you limited knowledge. When you buy a membership to the online AP Stylebook, you get audio files that help you pronounce words correctly, style guide updates throughout the year and access to Ask the Editor, where you can find answers to thousands of usage questions.

A subscription also gives you access to the Webster's New World dictionary and AP's Media Law Guide.

An AP Stylebook subscription costs $35 per year, but you can get a 20 percent discount by signing up for automatic renewals. Assuming that you want to renew automatically, you pay $28 per year.

Crystal

Good writing extends to more than your published content. Potential donors, executives, and subject matter experts pay attention to how well you communicate via email. Poorly written messages don't speak well of editors, writers or the publication.

Crystal helps ensure that your emails fit the communication preferences of the person you're trying to reach. Crystal is a browser plug-in that uses a popular psychological assessment tool called DISC to determine how the people you write to like to communicate. When you conform to their preferences, you become a better communicator and increase the chance that your request or advice will be well received.

Today, magazine editors and writers have a lot of advantages that earlier writers couldn't access. Make the most of these tech tools, and you'll take a step towards improving your writing style.

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