Five Apps to Collect Ideas for NaNoWriMo

It’s National Novel Writing Month once again, time to challenge yourself to write 50000 words in 30 days, no easy feat! But with your Android device by your side, you can keep working on your novel or non-fiction book anywhere and anytime. Throughout this week, we’ll share our best apps, thoughts, and tips to help you achieve that writing goal.

Inspiration is something that’s probably important to your creative endeavours but things have changed since NaNoWriMo was first launched. We now live in the age of smartphones and tablets, devices we can utilise to collect our ideas and inspiration from anywhere. In this special roundup, we’re going to take a look at a selection of great Android apps for storing everything interesting you might come across – texts, web pages, photos, and more.

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NaNoWriMoIdeas roundup: Evernote


Chances are that you, the Android.AppStorm reader, has already heard of Evernote. It’s an immensly popular notetaking app for Android that allows you to save ideas, capture photos, record your voice and more. It’s a pretty simple premise backed up by regular download in the millions per month.

Evernote is a great platform to pull together your inspiration. Have an idea? Write a note. See something cool that you might want to use as a point of inspiration? Capture it and store it for later. Just have some general thoughts? Record your voice and listen back when you need it.

Price: Free
Requires: Android 1.6 or above
Google Play Link: Evernote
Developer: Evernote Corp.

NaNoWriMoIdeas roundup: Springpad


Springpad is somewhat of a competitor to Evernote, with a similar function of saving items into notebooks. Much like its rival, you can use Springpad to pull together various ideas and inspiration into one central location for use at a later date. Clip an article, capture a photo or record a memo to yourself and then organise it into one of Springpad’s smart notebooks, or create a visual board with it.

Furthermore, you can collaborate with others through Springpad and share your ideas with others. That might not seem such a good idea, but it’s an awesome way of getting feedback before you’ve even started writing!

Even after NaNoWriMo is over, Springpad remains a really useful app that has a ton of cool features and is definitely worth keeping in your arsenal for future use.

Price: Free
Requires: Android 2.1 or above
Google Play Link: Springpad
Developer: Springpad

NaNoWriMoIdeas roundup: Instapaper


Instapaper is another pretty well known app, for good reason. It allows its users to save webpages for retrieval and reading in the future, offline and optimised to your device’s screen.

For NaNoWriMo and collecting ideas, Instapaper is a great way of storing inspiration that you may come across through reading on the web. You might discover a new technique that you want to use in your writing or find a pretty cool subject for including in your storyline. Either way, Instapaper is one of the best solutions for saving content from the web for later and keeping it all in one central location.

Price: $2.99
Requires: Android 2.2 or above
Google Play Link: Instapaper
Developer: Mobelux

NaNoWriMoIdeas roundup: Catch Notes

Catch Notes

Catch Notes is a really nice note taking app “designed to make sure you never miss an idea”.

Beautifully designed, Catch Notes lets users pull together voice recordings, photos and text notes, capturing them fresh and instantly right from within the app. You can collect ideas into specific spaces and projects and tag individual items to be found even easier later on, say, when you just need a strike of inspiration.

Much like apps previously mentioned, Catch Notes allows you to collaborate and share your spaces, selectively, between friends — useful for the reasons we mentioned earlier.

Price: Free
Requires: Android Varies with device
Google Play Link: Catch Notes

NaNoWriMoIdeas roundup: Pocket -formerly Read It Later

Pocket -formerly Read It Later

Similarly to Instapaper, Pocket is all about saving content from the web to be viewed later. When you’re browsing the web and find a nice article or video or photo, etc, simply put it in your Pocket to bring up later.

Pocket automatically syncs across all devices, meaning it’s great for participants of NaNoWriMo who aren’t already full-time writers. Commuting to work but doing some research for your novel? Simply save that video or webpage into your Pocket and it’ll be waiting for you at your computer when it’s time to write!

And, to boot, Pocket is one of the best designed apps I’ve come across for Android.

Price: Free
Requires: Android 2.2 or above
Google Play Link: Pocket -formerly Read It Later
Developer: Read It Later

For many people, a phone is the centre of their digital life. While it might be full of business and the harsh realities of your workload, one or two of these five apps can drastically help spice your life, and your novel, with a much needed boost of inspiration. And, with the fairly generic guarantee of automatic syncing and offline storage, there couldn’t be a better time to start looking for different ideas, researching your plot and organizing it all. After all, NaNoWriMo is only a couple of days away.