An update on outlining with software

Back in May, 2009 I posted a list of software applications for writers looking for outlining tools. This is a revised list based on some of the comments sent in. New additions are in blue.


  • StoryRight – an online outlining tool which allows scene by scene outlines, character dossiers and plot summarise. Free

Software packages available for purchase

  • Text tree – downloadable outliner available for purchase. Demo available (17 uses only)
  • Idea Cruncher – software for organising ideas. Simple tree-like structure. Demo available (30 days)
  • StoryView, by Write Brothers, Inc – a rather enthusiastic Write Brothers program for outlining and brainstorming available for purchase. I tried this product several years ago. To be honest I didn’t find the interface particularly easy on the eye, but mostly the reviews have been good for this product. Demo available
  • DramaticaPro, Write Brothers, Inc -a comprehensive program for Mac and PC users that allows character creation, comprehensive plotting, brainstorming and more. DramaticaPro is a popular program with many writers, but it’s not for me. Demo available
  • Page Four – a clean looking program with plot outliner, character summaries and a simple word processor.
  • Writer’s Cafe – comprehensive software for writings with outlining and word processing capabilities. Demo available
  • My Novel – allows planning of a novel from the original idea, to characters, plot and chapter profiles and writing it. Demo available
  • Story Master Pro – plan and structure your novel with Story Master Pro. Demo available
  • Liquid Story Binder – wordprocessor and comprehensive plotting tool. Demo available
  • Story Planner
  • UV Outliners – one pane outliner for Windows. Trial version available for download

Free downloadable outliners and software

  • Ume Outliner – a single-paned outliner for Windows. Download a free “preview” version of the outliner. A release version will be available for purchase soon.
  • yWriter – comprehensive outliner and word processor tailored for novelists.

Templates (free)

If you know of any other outliners please let me know so I can update the list.


About Sharon

Writer, bibliophile, dreamer and student of everything
This entry was posted in ME ON WRITING, Software 4 writers and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to An update on outlining with software

  1. radixal says:

    thank you for the information ..
    very interesting to read ..
    Please visit also the
    This site presents a lot of interesting information .. thank you ..

  2. Scrivener is a very popular outliner for writiers. is a web-based outliner that’s great for collaborative work.

    • Sharon says:

      Vishu, I haven’t added Scrivener because it is for Mac and I use Windows – I’m not being bias, just am unable to test it so cannot recommend it. I have heard it is one of the best though.

  3. jenniferneri says:

    do you use any of these, Sharon?
    I know one writer who uses software – I never have.

    • Sharon says:

      Jennifer, I don’t use any of these, but I have tested most of them. I use MS Word and OneNote. With OneNote I can make my own outlines and customise the templates.

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