Free Software Program for All Serious Writers

It’s amazing how complex life can become. Writing, it seems, is more difficult every day. I love to write, but whenever I sit down to do that (especially creative writing) I find myself torn by the constant dings of this program or flashing notifications of that one.

Sure, I should be more disciplined when I write. I should ignore all that noise. I should be able to just mentally turn it off — but I can’t.

Alternatively, I should be able to physically turn off all the distractions, disable the notifications, log out of all the programs that clamor for my attention before I even begin a serious attempt at writing…

But I won’t. I don’t. It’s too much trouble. Besides, once I’m finished, I’d have to go back and try to remember everything I turned off and flip it all back on. What a hassle. So… I tell myself:

“Maybe it’s just better to wait until things are quiet to write. Now’s not really the best time… later I’ll be more focused…”

And that’s how the writing I really want to do never actually happens.

Now, I have a way to do it all — keep all my techie stuff up and working and have a clean slate to do my writing without distraction. I’ve looked at several of the “blackout” programs that take your stuff off-screen and give you a blank slate for writing.

Most of them look like one of the old computers my father built in the late 70s and early 80s. So, there’s an attractiveness for me to that black background/green text look. It reminds me of the Multi-mate program I used when I was first hired as a reporter at the newspaper in St. Mary’s County, MD.

So, it has some sentimental value and a offers me a reminiscent feel that others may not enjoy.

Today, I tripped across one that was free! And it’s multi-platform. So no matter if you are a Mac user, a Windows buff or a Linux fan — there’s a version for you. You can change some of the colors to fit your own preferences and there’s even a PDF Manual available for those who need to know everything about a program.

This writer’s tool is called JDarkRoom. Check it out for yourself.

It’s not really a word processor. It’s not going to tell you if you have spelling errors or grammatical issues. It’s basically a typewriter — a distraction-free environment for those who take writing seriously and need a place on their computer to slip into the creative “zone” for a few minutes… or a few hours.It delivers your writing in a plain text file that you can then import into a word processor for editing, spellcheck and format tasks.

Personally, I find it terribly alluring. It’s already got a place of honor on my iMac’s Doc. I love it.