When you’re trying to get in the zone, it’s important to eliminate as many distractions as possible.
But how do you eliminate distractions when you’re writing on a computer, a device which is itself a distraction? A distraction free writing tool might help. These full screen text editors do their best to remove everything that is not important to the task of writing. In this post, I’ll have a look at five of them in an attempt to find the right one for me. Let’s see what Left, Ghostwriter, iA Writer, Writemonkey 3, and Calmly Writer have to offer.
Left is distraction-free plaintext editor designed to quickly navigate between segments of an essay, or multiple documents. It features auto-complete, Markdown support, synonyms suggestions, writing statistics, markup-based navigation and a speed-reader.
Left isn’t truly full-screen. In Windows, I can still see the menu bar, which annoys me like crazy. The auto-complete and synonymous features are very nice, but they have an unfortunate side effect. As you write, information flashes along on the bottom of the screen, where both the auto-complete and synonym suggests appear. This is a distraction in itself, which is unfortunate for a text editor that aims to eliminate them. Also, there is no way to control the width of the text in full-screen mode. This means that on a wide-screen monitor, you have to move your eyes a lot from side to side as you write.