iPad Apps for Writers - dummies

By Bob LeVitus, Bryan Chaffin

Get your creative juices flowing by using these writing apps on your iPad. These apps can keep your writing flowing whether you’re researching, journaling, or writing the next great novel.



TextExpander is one of those apps you’ll wonder how you did without once you start using it. With this app, you can set up short codes that TextExpander then expands automatically into a full word or phrase. It’s perfect for writing on your iPad, whether you’re taking notes or working on your novel. When you get used to using the abbreviation you set up, your wrists will thank you.

Smile has released an API that other iOS app developers can add into their apps that makes them “TextExpander-aware.” This approach is extra-cool: If an app is TextExpander-aware, it taps into your TextExpander database of snippets and does the substitution for you — simple as that. As long as you have TextExpander installed on your iPad, those apps just do that TextExpander thing automatically.

Chronicle for iPad — A Personal Journal


The iPad could be the perfect device for a personal journal, which may be why there are a lot of journal apps for the iPad on the App Store. Chronicle for iPad stands out because it offers a lot of features so that you can make the kind of journal you want. You can customize the background color, add photos from your photo library, search text, or view in calendar mode. You can type in portrait or landscape mode, export the journal as a PDF file — or straight to Google Docs — and put a password on it to give it some extra protection above and beyond the iPad’s security feature.

My Writing Spot for iPad


My Writing Spot for iPad is a nice app for creative writing, for a couple reasons:

  • It fully supports external keyboards.

  • The app has a browser-based companion service that runs on Google App Engine. You can save your documents to the online service, and edit them from any browser.

When you’re working on your iPad, the app offers word count, font controls, and support for TextExpander Touch. It autosaves your documents and auto-spell-checks them, and you can organize your documents into groups. It also features an app-based passcode for extra security.