Editor's Note: This review has been removed from our side-by-side comparison because it no longer ranks as a top 10 product. The original review is below, but check out our current top 10 about Creative Writing Software here.
Power Writer is efficient creative writing software with easy-to-use features and a great tutorial to teach you how to use them. It has all the necessary story development tools and interconnected functions to improve your writing and keep track of story elements.
Sometimes simpler is better, and that's the case with Power Writer. It doesn't have a lot of extra features, but it has the necessities to make your job easier. Its integrated functions make it worthwhile for any writer of any experience level.
The software offers three main features: Outline View, Composition Frame and Story Tools. The Outline View lets you easily navigate within your story or book, clicking from one chapter to the next or to a specific point within any given chapter. In turn, the part of your story that you select in Outline View appears in Composition Frame, which is the word processor in which you write the body of your story.
Story Tools is the heart of the application. It lets you create characters and assign their traits, access information about your story's plot structure, add research notes and more. It's a repository for all your story information. Within Story Tools is a Notes/Reference category to keep your notes organized and accessible.
You create characters in Story Tools by filling out a list of traits and answering questions about their physical and personality traits, desires and goals, strengths and virtues, and faults and weaknesses, as well as what they learn and how they change.
One drawback to Story Tools is the button to open and hide the feature is too small. It's only about 1/16 of an inch thick between Story Tools and the Composition Frame and is hard to find and access. Other drawbacks with this software include not having a brainstorming feature and its lack of genre outlines. It is also not available for Mac OS X. There is no dictionary or writing examples within this application.
You can quickly move between the three main components of Power Writer, or have them all open. The word processor has a familiar design and takes little time to learn.
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One feature called Must Accomplish Items is true to its title. You must fill in story details to move forward in the narration.
Power Writer offers great built-in tutorials to walk you through all of these functions. There's also a search box in which you can seek answers. A useful feature in the dropdown menu is called What's This? You click on it in the menu and your cursor turns into a pointer with a question mark. Point and click on anything within the application and a pop-up window explains its function and purpose. Customer service also is available by phone or email.
Power Writer is good creative writing software. Its easy-to-use features and interconnected applications aid in your writing process. It has great tutorials to guide you along the way and powerful prompts to help define characters and story points. It's not available for Mac OS X, and it lacks a dictionary and brainstorm feature, but overall this writing software is effective and efficient in helping you write structured, thorough and creative prose.