There are plenty of free tools around that offer full-screen, distraction-free writing environment for Windows users. While some of the popular word processing tools such as Microsoft Word can also be used as distraction-free writing tool by tweaking its default settings, dedicated distraction-free applications offer more options and are actually free-to-use.
FocusWriter is a free, full screen distraction-free writing application for Windows operating system. FocusWriter, unlike some other distraction free tools, allows you access each and every option using keyboard shortcut.
The interface includes nothing but a full-screen window with wood-finish theme as the background. You can access menus and toolbar by moving the mouse cursor to the top edge of the screen. Move the mouse cursor to bottom-edge of the screen view word count, time, and all open tabs (documents).
The ability to customize the interface is one of the highlights of the software. You can either choose one of the four themes or create your own one by selecting a background picture of your favorite one. And if you rather prefer a solid color for background, you can do so as well.
You can set your daily goal (word count or time) by navigating to Preferences. Under preferences, you can change the default settings for format, spell checking, daily goal, and toolbar. The last tab under preferences includes all keyboard shortcuts and also enables you edit the default hotkeys.
FocusWriter is bundled with plenty of small but useful features. It offers timers and alarms, automatically saves the document that you’re currently working on (optional though), and remembers cursor position.
Focused text is another worth mentioning feature of FocusWriter. The feature highlights only the line or the paragraph you are currently editing. You can set focus to one line, three lines or one paragraph. The feature is helpful while editing lengthy documents.
Overall a good piece of software if you’re looking for a free distraction-free software. Although it’s hard to pick a good full screen, distraction free writing software as most of the distraction free writing tools offer similar set of features, FocusWriter is certainly one of the best distraction-free writing tools out there for Windows.
If you prefer a portable version of the software, you can get the same on the download page. In addition to Windows, FocusWriter is available for Mac OS X and Linux as well.
Do you use distraction-free writing tool?