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Three apps every writer needs in their toolbox

There are hundreds of apps out there that can help with your writing, but here are my top three:

What is it?

Perhaps not the most obvious choice, but an absolute gem of an app. It's based on the Penguin book, of the same name, and has a mixture of guided and unguided meditations. You can choose from 7-21 day programs, or meditations that last just a few minutes, and there is something for almost any situation you find yourself in. There is also a fab selection of moving landscapes and audio to accompany your meditations.

Why do you need it?

Mostly, I use the Calm app after a particularly productive writing day. You know the kind of day I mean – one of those ones where you find that you can't type the words quickly enough, the ideas flow, and you only stop because you know you have to work the next day and will be next-to-useless if you stay up any later. After a day like that, I find it extremely difficult to turn my creative brain off. I often get into bed and discover that my mind is still writing, eager to move my characters forward to the next part of the story. In this situation, Calm is fantastic because the sleep meditations help you to switch off, unwind, and reboot. You can set the app so that it switches itself off at the end of the meditation session, and just allow yourself to drift off, which is wonderful.

There is also a creativity meditation, which can be a great way of clearing your mind if you're experiencing the kind of writer's block where you just can't see a way forward. And, the best thing, is that you can download meditations of varying length, so whether you have 2 minutes, 5 minutes, or 10 minutes you can benefit.

How much does it cost?

Admittedly, Calm is a little pricey but you get a lot for your money. You can download for free, and access a couple of basic meditations. But if you want all the bells and whistles, it's £7.99 a month or £29.99 outright.

For iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and Google Play.

What is it?

A journalling app that allows you to add photographs and tags to your entries.

Why do you need it?

I love this app, and try to write in it every night. It's fantastic for jotting down your thoughts about your writing journey, and the tagging feature means that you can also use it to keep a note of ideas and easily look back at them.

How much is it?

Just £3.99.

For Mac, iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch.

What is it?

Freewriter does what it says on the tin – it gives you five minutes to just write whatever comes into your head. If you pause, or take too long to write your next sentence, the words begin to fade and drop down the page, so it encourages you not to think too much!

Why do you need it?

This app is fantastic for those moments when you're really struggling to move your plot forward, or come up with an idea. It's a similar principle to just writing on paper, but with Freewriter you can save and edit what you wrote at the end of the five minute session.

How much is it?

Gloriously free!

For Mac OS X 10.10 or later

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