21 Top Writing Tools for 2023: What Writers Must Try and Why | Semrush
GoodContent by Semrush

21 Best Writing Tools Every Writer Should Try in 2023


Margarita LoktionovaApr 01, 202315 min read

A bad workman blames his tools, or so the saying goes—but there’s no denying that having the right tools can help you do the best possible job.

However, finding the best tool for your writing project can be like searching for a needle in a haystack. You don’t have time for that, so we’ve done the legwork for you.

Here are 21 of the best writing tools available for you to use online. These are editing, organizing, SEO optimization, and even AI writing tools.

So, dig in!

AI Writing Tools

AI Writing Tools

Are you struggling to get started or rushed for time? AI writing software can help you break out of a rut and speed up the writing and editorial process.

You can use AI tools to structure and optimize your content, and write faster.

Here are a few of our favorite options.

1. Jasper.ai

One of the best-known AI writer tools, Jasper.ai helps you create various types of content, from articles to social media posts, landing pages, product descriptions, and more.

Top writing tools: Jasper.AI

Who’s it for? Business owners, content marketers, content writers

Cost: Individual creators and small teams pay $49 and $99 respectively per month; larger businesses can count on custom pricing

About: Jasper.ai uses artificial intelligence to help writers produce content that they can extrapolate into full campaigns. The platform pledges to protect your tone of voice and keep your content true to your business.

Benefits:

  • Multiple templates for diverse content formats
  • Available in 25+ languages
  • Offers Jasper Brand Voice

2. ContentShake AI

ContentShake AI is a smart AI writing tool from Semrush.

It helps you generate ready-to-publish, SEO-rich content in one click. 

The tool also suggests weekly content ideas based on what's trending in your niche and lets you optimize your drafts using the integrated AI chat.

Top writing tools: ContentShake AI

Who’s it for? Business owners, content marketerscontent writers

Cost: You can get a 7-day free trial to test the tool's features. After this, subscribe to the paid plan for unlimited content creation at a fixed price of $60/month.

About: ContentShake AI comes in hot from the team at Semrush. The platform combines ChatGPT's AI capabilities with Semrush's powerful SEO data to help you create content that brings organic traffic to your website. You can send your articles to WordPress straight from the tool, so there's no need for copy-and-paste.

Benefits:

  • Suggests high-volume, trending content ideas for your business
  • Combines AI with SEO data, helping you rank in search
  • Helps optimize your drafts with an integrated AI chat, competitive insights, as well as readability, tone of voice, and SEO suggestions

3. Sudowrite

Writer’s block getting you down? This tool will help you get your fiction back on track.

Sudowrite is one of the best creative writing and storytelling tools powered by AI. It’s great for writing novels, stories, and everything in between.

It helps you overcome writer’s block and make your writing process more interactive.

Top writing tools: Sudowrite

Who’s it for? Creative writers, novelists, screenwriters, short story writers

Cost: Sudowrite offers hobby, professional, and max versions, costing $19, $29, or $129 per month, with discounts of up to 50% for annual billing

About: The tool uses artificial intelligence to help authors speed up fiction writing. It pledges to make writing more fun, faster, and less solitary. It helps writers produce fictional prose in a variety of genres, and matches your style and tone of voice.

Benefits:

  • Saves time on describing your characters
  • Helps you brainstorm ideas
  • Speeds up the rewriting process
  • Offers a browser extension

4. Copy.ai

Copy.ai helps write all types of marketing copy—social campaigns, ecommerce landing pages, emails, and more.

It’s perfect for copywriting and can also be used by busy marketers without a full team of writers on hand.

Top writing tools: Copy.AI

Who’s it for? Copywriters, social media managers, email marketers

Cost: After a limited free version, the pro version comes in at $36 per month; if you need more, you can request an enterprise demo

About: Copy.ai offers help producing different types of content for a range of audiences, including social media posts, ecommerce, and email campaigns, among many others.

Benefits:

  • Supports 90+ content types
  • Easy-to-use chatbot
  • Offers a free plan

5. Free Semrush Tools for Rephrasing and Summarizing

Struggling with summarizing your ideas? Or perhaps you know what you want to say, but can’t get it quite right.

Semrush offers two completely free tools that help you paraphrase and summarize your text:

Top writing tools: Paraphrasing tool

Who’s it for? Small business owners, copywriters, students

Cost: Absolutely free and no registration required

About: Use these free tools to rephrase, simplify and summarize your text in one click - no registration or credit card required.

Benefits:

  • Refine, enhance, or reword written work
  • Summarize news, articles, long emails, or your own writing
  • Optimize your copy’s readability and tone of voice
Editing and Optimization Tools

Editing and Optimization Tools

Everyone needs an editor—an adage professional writers live by.

But using proper editing tools can be a useful substitute when you don’t have an editor available and the clock is ticking on a deadline.

Here’s a list of the top editing and optimization tools to write better in 2023.

6. Hemingway Editor

Hemingway Editor is designed to help you write more simply, be concise, and get to the point faster.

Top writing tools: Hemingway

Who’s it for? Writers who want to make their copy easier to read and more concise

Cost: Free online; users can buy the desktop version for a one-time payment of $19.99

About: The app takes its name from the celebrated novelist Ernest Hemingway, who was renowned for his direct style of writing.

“Write the best story that you can and write it as straight as you can” is one of his more famous quotes.

This app helps you do just that. Using different colors, the editing app highlights text to show where and which changes should be made.

Benefits:

  • Helps you assess readability and complexity
  • Free access
  • Works well for shorter texts

7. Cliché Finder

Worried that your writing is sounding a little stale?

Whatever your writing purpose—whether you're a fiction writer, content writer, or student—Cliché Finder can help you be more creative.

Top writing tools: Cliché Finder

Who’s it for? All types of writers

Cost: Free

About: Cliché means something that is overused.

Using clichés usually suggests a lack of original thought.

Cliché Finder lets you copy and paste writing into the platform to sweep for clichés, which you can then remove. Use it to stop your copy from sounding tired.

Benefits:

  • Enhance communication skills
  • Avoid overused expressions
  • Freshen up copy

8. SEO Writing Assistant

Semrush’s SEO Writing Assistant helps you enhance your content creation process and optimize copy you have already written.

It scores content based on its tone of voice, SEO, readability, and originality.

It then highlights paragraphs and sentences that need improvement. You can use built-in AI features to do it faster.

Top writing tools: SEO Writing Assistant

Who’s it for? Content writers, content marketers, SEO specialists

Cost: The tool is available on the Guru Plan, which costs $250/month. This plan includes all Semrush tools plus the Content Marketing Platform, historical data, and extended limits.

About: The SEO Writing Assistant is designed for writers who want to make their content more engaging for users and optimize it for search engines.

Your content will get a higher chance to rank in Google, and will be more enjoyable to read.

Benefits:

  • Offers real-time data and insights based on top-ranking content
  • Add-ons to optimize text in Google Docs, WordPress, or MS Word 365
  • Helps to find plagiarism and improve readability and tone of voice
  • AI content generation features allow you to rephrase, simplify, expand, and summarize copy in one click

9. Grammarly

If you write in English, Grammarly will help you keep your writing accurate, clear, and grammatically correct.

Top writing tools: Grammarly

Who’s it for? Anyone who writes in English and is looking to check grammar, spelling, and clarity; it can be especially useful for non-native writers

Cost: The tool offers a free plan with limited features; the Premium plan costs $12/month

About: Grammarly helps polish copy and make sure writing is clear and concise. It also has functions that help edit email and other communications. These changes ensure that your writing comes across as professional and confident.

Benefits:

  • Writing assistance on 500,000+ apps and sites
  • Browser extension for sites like Gmail, Google Docs, and LinkedIn
  • Free plan
Organizational Writing Tools

Organizational Writing Tools

Writers can be disorganized at times, and this is especially true when deadlines are approaching.

But a little organization can help you stay on top of your writing schedule and meet your deadlines.

The following list of apps will help you get organized before you start scribbling.

10. Milanote

Perfect for professionals, Milanote keeps your content projects organized and on track.

Top writing tools: Milanote

Who’s it for? Writers of all kinds, but also creative directors, marketers, agencies

Cost: There’s a free plan and a $9.99/person plan if you wish to upgrade; team options are also available starting at $49 per month

About: Milanote is designed to help creatives from a variety of professions with time management.

The app also helps creative writers and novelists to plan the next story from a central hub of ideas.

Benefits:

  • Collect everything in one place
  • Organize visually
  • Collaborate and brainstorm with your team

Bonus tool:

Miro is another great alternative. It’s perfect for brainstorming, organizing your ideas, tracking projects, and setting up creative meetings.

Top writing tools: Miro

11. Ulysses

Don’t let your projects turn into an ancient Greek Odyssey. Ulysses helps you stick to deadlines and keep your focus.

Top writing tools: Ulysses

Who’s it for? This is for almost anyone; as the Ulysses website suggests, it targets “people who love to write and write a lot.”

Cost: $39.99/year, or $5.99 per month

About: Ulysses’ minimalist interface makes getting distracted a thing of the past. The platform also helps you set daily goals and deadlines and keeps your projects on track. The app counts published authors as alumni—maybe you could be one of them!

Benefits:

  • Equipped for writing projects of all sizes and ambitions
  • Built-in proofreader and editing assistant
  • Available for over 20 languages
  • Turn texts into PDFs, Word documents, ebooks, and blog posts

12. Evernote

Evernote has been so popular for so long, you might want to call it Forever-note instead.

This one clipping tool is worth checking out even if you don’t have a professional need for it.

Top writing tools: Evernote

Who’s it for? Executives, entrepreneurs, creatives

Cost: Evernote offers a free option; the personal and professional versions start at $14.99 and $17.99 respectively, depending on how you choose to pay

About: Evernote allows writers to create notebooks to categorize and group related content. You can use Evernote to capture ideas on the go, organizing them with tags for easy searching, filtering, and retrieval.

Benefits:

  • Create and assign tasks within your notes
  • Scan important documents
  • Save web pages and annotate them
  • Connect to Google Calendar
Productivity Tools

Productivity Tools

Sometimes it’s just hard to sit down and do the work.

Writing requires a great deal of concentration, and distractions are infinite.

These online writing tools are designed to help you tune out the noise and get the words down on the page.

13. OmmWriter

Your screen time can become chaotic with notifications, ads, and emails. OmmWriter adds some much-needed zen into your workflow.

Top writing tools: OmmWriter

Who’s it for? Those who wish to write without distractions

Cost: OmmWriter has no set price; the minimum is $7.78, but users are encouraged to pay based on what they perceive the worth of the app to be

About: OmmWriter blocks out distractions by going into full-screen mode. It also uses natural backgrounds and audio tracks with sounds from nature to help you concentrate on the task.

Benefits:

  • Minimalist design and basic functions to increase concentration
  • Personalize the environment, music, and typefaces

14. Cold Turkey

Cut those online temptations like social media and focus on what’s important with Cold Turkey. It’s tough, but it works.

Top writing tools: Cold Turkey

Who’s it for? Writers looking for a strict productivity app

Cost: You can get the basic features of Cold Turkey for free; the pro-writer version costs $9 for lifetime access

About: Cold Turkey takes an extreme—but effective—approach to blocking out distractions. The application can either stop access to specific websites or turn your laptop into a typewriter and cut off the entire internet. These blocks run for a set amount of time, during which you can focus on writing alone.

Benefits:

  • Enhance discipline
  • Schedule breaks
  • Subscription-free, one-time purchase

15. Todoist

To-do lists as long as your arm and no idea where to start? Todoist will help get your professional life back on track.

Top writing tools: Todoist

Who’s it for? Professionals and teams

Cost: Todoist boasts a free option, as well as pro and team versions that start at $4 and $6 per month when billed annually

About: Todoist is an organizer app that helps clear clutter from your workflow. You can centralize tasks in one easy-to-manage place and even assign new tasks via email. It’s easy to use and can help you organize personal as well as professional tasks.

Benefits:

  • Use on any device or platform
  • Variety of pre-built templates
  • Customize your task lists with filters, tags, priorities, and more
  • Link with your calendar, voice assistant, and over 70 other tools
Topic Research and Referencing

Topic Research and Referencing

Strong research is the key to any good article. It forms the foundation of persuasive, authoritative writing.

This is necessary to create strong calls to action.

The following apps and platforms can help you research your topics before you start typing.

16. Zotero

Buried in a mountain of citations? Look no further than Zotero.

It’s ideal for academics, students, researchers, and others who need to organize their references and research.

Top writing tools: Zotero

Who’s it for? Researchers, students, academics

Cost: Zotero is free for storage of up to 300MB; more storage can be bought for between $20 and $120, depending on how much you need

About: Zotero is a free and open-source reference management software. It helps researchers collect, organize, cite, and share materials. It offers a user-friendly interface, efficient data management, and seamless citation options.

Benefits:

  • Choose how to organize your research
  • Instantly create references and bibliographies
  • Sync your research and access it from any web browser
  • Collaborate with others easily

17. Topic Research

There should be no such thing as a blank page.

Instead, you can start working with research, ideas, and clear topics.

That’s where the Topic Research tool from Semrush comes in very handy.

Top writing tools: Topic Research

Who’s it for? Content marketers, content writers, business owners

Cost: The tool is available on the Guru Plan, which costs $250/month. This plan includes all Semrush tools plus the Content Marketing Platform, historical data, and extended limits.

About: You can use Semrush’s Topic Research tool to find ideas for articles based on topics that are trending among your customer base. It can also help you find the most popular questions related to your topic.

Benefits:

  • Generate dozens of content ideas
  • Find content ideas for specific locations up to the city level
  • Structure your article to answer all questions your readers have about the topic

18. Free Citation Generator by Scribbr

Tired of painstakingly writing out your citations? Then this free tool is for you.

Top writing tools: Scribbr

Who’s it for? Academic writers

Cost: Free

About: It’s an online tool designed to help users generate accurate citations and references for academic works. It supports a wide range of citation styles, which dictate the format and elements required for each type of source.

Benefits:

  • Quick and free to way to generate citations
Workplace Tools

Workplace Tools

Of course, the best writing tools are not limited to software or applications.

After all, where would historic writers have been without pens, printing presses, or typewriters?

Here are a few things to include in your workplace setup to make writing more fun and enjoyable.

19. Computer Glasses

Americans spend more than seven hours in front of the computer a day, according to Zippia. Computer glasses can alleviate some of the eye strain issues you may experience.

Top writing tools: Computer Glasses

Who are they for? Those who spend every day in front of a computer

Cost: These glasses can cost between $15 and $50, with many around $20

About: Computer glasses are special eyewear designed to reduce the eye strain and discomfort associated with prolonged use of digital screens.

They filter out blue light emitted by computers and tablets.

This light can contribute to eye fatigue, dryness, and potential long-term health issues, so computer glasses can make a big difference.

There are plenty of brands you can try out—for example, these light-blocking glasses on Amazon.

20. Livescribe Pen

The Livescribe pen will ensure you don’t miss a thing when taking notes.

Top writing tools: Livescribe Pen

Who’s it for? Journalists, marketers, business owners

Cost: Livescribe offers a range of models, with prices between $114.95 and $164.80 at the time of this writing

About: This nifty device captures and digitalizes everything written and spoken. It includes a camera and microphone, so it’s extremely useful for conducting interviews.

21. reMarkable

Love the feel of writing on paper? Then the reMarkable digital notebook might be the device for you.

Top writing tools: reMarkable

Source: Forbes

Who’s it for? Students, academics, professionals, writers

Cost: The latest reMarkable tablet is available starting from $279.

About: The reMarkable tablet allows for digital note-taking, sketching, and reading. It features an electronic ink display with stylus for a paper-like writing experience.

The interface lets users easily organize and access digital notes and documents. Users can then export these notes as PDFs or other files to their desktop or laptop.

Get Writing

Get Writing

So there you have it, 21 of the top writing tools to help you become a more efficient and creative writer.

You can play around with different tool combinations. For example, try running AI-generated copy through a paraphrasing tool before using an editing app and see what the results are like.

Armed with these tools, you’ll be able to increase your output without compromising on quality.

Create ready-to-rank content in one click!

Try ContentShake AI-a smart writing tool for small teams with big content marketing goals. Save time, see results.