Writing with yWriter

Writing Software; there are a lot of them out there. Some are free and some cost money. Scrivener is probably one of the most popular. If you’re like me, though, and you don’t have much money or aren’t sure Scrivener (or other paid softwares) are really worth it, there is an FREE option designed by a writer for writers: yWriter5.

What is yWriter?


yWriter is a word processor that divides your book into chapters and scenes easily and so you can see them. If you are outlining your book, this is a great tool to use because they have places for notes where you put the scene description in. For more details about what yWriter is and why it was created, check out the yWriter website.

Why is it helpful?

I found it extremely helpful for a novella I wrote this November. I had an outline I made and used that to create the chapters, scenes (complete with titles and descriptions), and character descriptions. With yWriter, you can have chapters that can be divided into as many scenes as you need, you can write notes to yourself pretty much anywhere, and you can have character descriptions and even pictures. I’ve taken a few screen shots for you to look at.


Main Screen where you can create the chapters and scenes


This is Chapter 1, scene 1. All the red words are words they think are spelled wrong. This is where you can write your book and if you look below it, you’ll see where I put my scene description.


This is one of my character descriptions.


yWriter is fairly simple to use and figure out. A few fun features you might not find right away:

  • Typewriter Sounds (found in the “Settings” tab in the scenes)
  • Also under “Settings” is “Always capitalise ‘I’.” It saves a lot of frustration if you set that.


Take some time to explore some of the features before jumping in and using it. That way you can utilize every feature that is helpful to you.

Have a story ready to write because it’s always fun to try out a new writing program. You can download yWriter5 here. NOTE: This software only works for Microsoft operating systems, not Mac or Linux.


Whether you outline or not, this software program is a great place to keep track of your writing, your ideas, and anything else for your book. And since it’s free, if you try it and don’t like it, you don’t have to worry about wasting your money.



10 thoughts on “Writing with yWriter

  1. Raechel says:

    This looks really helpful – thanks for sharing, Faith!

  2. For me, breaking up my story like this is not helpful to my writing, so I stick to more traditional word processors.

    Still … since this is free … and I’m a word processor addict, (Seriously, I had … five word processors on my computer at one point) I might go download this.

    Thanks for taking part in Indie e-Con!

  3. Thanks for the tutorial! I started using yWriter last year because I was moving a lot of scenes around and I needed a way to do that more easily than in Word. Still haven’t figured it out entirely yet, but I’m working on it.

  4. Brie Donning says:

    I use yWriter, but usually not in the first draft. I’m not that structured. (and of two first drafts, one was hand written) Once I have a story though, breaking it up can help. Sometimes I even get so far as planning ahead in it, but that’s all. I certainly don’t use the extra features.

  5. bbcradiodrama says:

    I’ve just discovered ywriter and find it awesome – especially as it’s free. And it’s other great attribute is that it ti simple to use. No need to chug through endless Youtube videos to get a hang of it. Only one thing, it won’t work on my chromebook which I work on in the library. Guess you can’t have everything.

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