Road to Publication–A Few More Programs to Consider

This is going to be a fairly short post (for me). I’m still fighting the creeping crud and will be crawling back into bed one I finish this. I’ll try to get back later–if I’m feeling better–to add to the post.

Anyway, here are a few other programs to consider. Several of these are tools to help catch things your word processing program may have missed. Another can help you choose the best categories and keywords for your books.

Grammarly or ProWritingAid.

These programs do basically the same thing. They can help you find misspellings, punctuation and grammar faults, overused words, etc.


Grammarly comes with a free or a premium version. The free version is basically web based. You create an account and then you will upload parts of your manuscript to be checked. The pro for this is free. The downside is that you are limited with the size of the file it can check and there is a limit to how much you can check during a given period of time. But, if you are checking as you write and not in the final edit phase, this might work for you.

Here’s a breakdown of what features the different versions include:


And here is the cost:

Grammarly 2

So, you’ll be making an investment. I recommend before subscribing, you try the free version. You may find it is enough for you.


Like Grammarly, ProWritingAid offers a web-based editor that is basically a stripped down version of the full program. Also, like Grammarly, it plays better with Windows than it does with the Mac OS. With both of these programs, there are plug-ins for the Windows version of Word which allow you to run the program from inside Word. If you use it on Mac, you have an app that rests outside of your word processor.

The interface and reports for ProWritingAid aren’t quite as “clean” looking at that for Grammarly. However, on a personal level, I like PWA better than Grammarly, possibly because it was the first one I really began working with. Like Grammarly, you can check you spelling, grammar and punctuation. You can check for overused words, colloquialisms, readability, etc. You can finesse the program by setting it to the type of writing you do.

If you upgrade to the premium version, you do not have to be connected to the web to use the app/plug-in. There is no limit on how often you use it or how many words (although the smaller the file, the quicker you get results). Here is another consideration to keep in mind: it is cheaper than Grammarly.


As with any spellcheck or grammar check program, don’t rely on either of these to be always right. They aren’t. But they are handy tools if you are looking for something that can break down aspect of your writing and point out some bad habits, like overusing a word or phrase, you might have.


One final useful software tool is Publisher Rocket (formerly KDP Rocket). This isn’t something you will use during the writing or editing process. It will, however, help you find the best categories to list your books under and keywords to use. There is a learning curve but the support for this program has been, in the year or so I’ve been using it, superb. The video “lessons” are short and effective, making the learning curve less steep than you have with some other programs.

It is also available in both Windows and Mac versions and there is little difference between the two.

Unfortunately, as with the other programs listed today, this is also a for purchase title. Unlike the others, it is a one-time outlay (at the moment). Cost is $97.

One last thing about Rocket, you get more than just the program when you buy it. The updates and videos posted by the developer are very good and often clue you in on little secrets about KDP and similar programs you might not have known–like how to get additional categories for your book.

Okay, this was quick and not real detailed but the websites for these three programs are pretty good about answering questions and there are tons of Youtube videos if you want to go digging through them. I’ll be back later with more.

Until later!


  1. Doesn’t Grammarly have a tendency to rephrase things the way it likes and strip a person’s writing style out of it?

    1. You’d think so, right?

      On the other hand, I can think of a number of times where authors have responded to grammar errors with “that’s my style” when it’s just wrong. If your style is wrong, then I guess it’s your style?

      But the whole idea of Grammarly is sort of scary because *wouldn’t* it strip your writing style?

      I suppose the thing would be to try it. I tend to leave stuff out, though, and how would it help with that? We could all do a test with the free version and report back?

      1. unless it has ‘styles’ that can be picked, the commercials for it show it turning emails into bland business talk that while great for corporate docs and emails are terrible for fiction.

        1. Don’t go by commercials. Seriously, don’t on anything. But, as for Grammarly or ProWritingAid, you can choose styles, etc. Also, nothing is changed unless you accept it. Just like with the spellcheck/grammar check on your word processing program.

          1. I’m jsut saying, that’s what they show and it is supposed to make me want to buy it…. but doesn’t. But then, I was super b****y with the German translator at [Big Tech Site] too.

            1. The commercial is built, honestly, to show off the things you can do with the free version. And that version has more flexibility than it once did. The pro version has much more. That said, I prefer ProWritingAid and even then use it only sparingly.

  2. I have anxiety about picking key words. My blog has bunches of posts and almost none of them have key words because Argh!

    1. Google Rocket and key words. It should bring you to some of the videos. They might help, although keywords for your blog will be a bit different from what is used for books.

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