So you are planning to write a book but don’t want to be caught up in the vagaries of editing and formatting. I feel you. The technicalities of book writing can be time and effort consuming, that is if you choose to do themselves yourself, which several authors do. But there is always the choice to hire a professional editor to do the work for you. From a personal point of view, hiring a professional editor is all worth it.
Writing a book on Google Docs
Google Docs is a good writing tool and I have used it to write some of the chapters of my doctoral thesis. I find it quite reliable and simple to use. Google Docs provides all the necessary features you need to brainstorm, outline, and write your book but for advanced features your best bet is to go with Scrivener or Word.
Some of the Google Docs features that can help you with book writing include the ability to easily generate a table of content (using headings or titles in your document), add headers and footers, voice type the content of your chapters, spelling and grammar checker, word count, document outliner which enables you to easily access different parts of your book, a wide variety of fonts and text styles, the ability to insert multimedia materials such as images and videos, an integrated dictionary, and many more. To learn more about how to write a book in Google Docs I recommend this step by step tutorial from MakeUseOf.
Google Docs book templates
Going with a pre-made Google Docs book template is your best if you want to give your book a professional look without having to spend ridiculous amount of time on formatting and design. Unfortunately, Google Docs template gallery does not contain any book templates the only ones related to book writing are book report templates.
For professionally design Google Docs templates I would recommend GooDocs where you can find a collection of free Docs templates to use for writing your book. Alternative, you can invest a little bit of your time and create your own book template from scratch. There is a small learning curve but it is time well spent.
Scrivener is another great writing software and word processor that enables you to write and edit books. Scrivener offers numerous powerful features including an integrated outliner that helps you structure your manuscript the way you want, full screen writing to help you focus while writing, the ability to “switch instantly between editing your manuscript one section at a time and together as a whole”, and many more. There are tons of video tutorials on YouTube to help you get started using Scrivener. Abbie Emmons has this good tutorial on how to use Scrivener to write a novel.
3. Microsoft Word
Microsoft Word is also another good option for writing books. I think it is way better than Google Docs and offers almost all the features you will need to bring your next book to life. Check out this handy guide from Kindlepreneur to learn how to use Microsoft Word to write your book.