Here at Winning Edits, we're people pleasers. We deeply care about you and your project. We want you, your book, and/or your brand to flourish regardless of whether we end up working together. That's where this resources page comes into play. The resources below comprise all of our favorite tools, apps, and books that enable us to be more productive, effective, and downright giddy as a team.
- CoSchedule: When you have a distributed team working on a variety of different projects simultaneously, a nifty and powerful calendar like CoSchedule is a must. Just ask our Managing Editor, Janna. We particularly love it because it allows us to keep a separate task list (with due dates) for each piece of content. As a user, you can switch between the team calendar and your own personal task calendar.
- Google Calendar: If you prefer a less expensive calendar option (in this case, free!), Google Calendar is a mighty choice.
- Slack: See ya, email! Slack is here to the rescue! Slack lets you set up a separate channel for each project, so that as a team you can keep all your notes about that project in one place. We do admit that email still has a place in business, but when you need to have conversations about your projects, Slack is far more efficient. Plus, the emojis are great for team building. Bonus: if you sign up by clicking this link, you'll get $100 in credit!
- Google Hangouts: As a completely distributed (or remote) team, we don't see each other in person very often. But we do get to see the smiling faces of our team (and sometimes our pets too!) on weekly Google Hangout meetings.
- Skype: Similar to Hangouts, Skype is another great tool for connecting with other people online. You have the option of video or just audio too, which can be of benefit if you just woke up and you're still in your Transformers jammies.
- Ecamm Call Recorder (Mac) or Pamela for Skype (PC): Use these Skype plugins if you need to record your calls. They work great for remotely recording podcasts.
Project Management Tools
- Trello: Is your pile of projects so big that it makes you want to hide under the bed? Trello is designed for you—especially if you're a visual organizer! In Trello, you create a board with a bunch of cards. Each card is a project, and it lets you keep track of due dates, notes, and documents.
- Slack: Because we are a distributed team in three different time zones, Slack is critical for our team's project management. It's how we discuss the details of each project, agree on to-dos and due dates, and share documents with each other. It really keeps us on track and aligned in our projects. Plus, it has a built-in GIF function, so we can share silly GIFs with each other all day long. (That might seem like a small detail, but it has an important role in building our company culture.)
Content Production Tools
- Google Docs: Most, if not all, of our content begins its life in Google Docs. The real-time synchronization is crucial—we can have two team members write and edit together at the same time. The future is here, friends, and it is glorious! As an added bonus, Google Docs doesn't give us the formatting headache that Microsoft Word does.
- Scrivener: The internet will lead you to believe that all serious authors use Scrivener. We like it for large writing projects, but many new users may find it intimidating. Learn Scrivener Fast will help you get started.
- Screenflow: These days, authors are responsible for their own promotion, which often means creating audio and video. Screenflow is our favorite video editing tool. It is a bit challenging to learn, but it will allow you to create and edit all kinds of videos, including that excellent teaching tool, the screenshare video.
- Audacity and Reaper: Podcasters, here's a point where our team is a bit split! We all agree that Audacity is the best free podcast editing tool available. If you're ready to take a step up from the free tool, try Reaper. Reaper has a bit more finesse when it comes to trying (and undoing) editing effects. Lynda.com has an excellent Reaper tutorial.
Social Media and Marketing Tools
- Buffer: If you manage social media for your brand or author platform, Buffer is the tool you want to use. It's super powerful, simple, and, if you get in a bind or have questions for whatever reason, their customer support team is the best in the game.
- ConvertKit: Smart authors understand that their email list is their biggest business asset. This is your tool for connecting directly with your audience on your terms—without a publisher or social media platform in the way, imposing their own rules and algorithms. If you're planning to sell directly to your audience, then ConvertKit is the email service provider for you. Their tools are intuitive, making email marketing simple. Plus, a pretty killer email marketing book.
- Pablo: With Pablo, you don't need to waste time searching for inspiring images and quotes online. It's done for you, with an awesome way to share directly to your social media channels.
Tools for Focus
- OmmWriter: If you write as often as we do, you know it can sometimes be difficult to focus on the task at hand. We love OmmWriter for the times when multitasking needs to take a back seat to progress. Bonus: OmmWriter is beautifully designed.
- Noisli: Are you someone who gets far more accomplished at the coffee shop than you do at home? Maybe you simply focus better with a little consistent background noise? When we need to keep our head in the game, we turn to Noisli. Not only can you choose which sounds you'd like to enjoy, you can combine them depending on your mood or needs. A coffee shop on a rainy day? Check. Plain white noise that will drown out just about everything? You got it. Soothing sounds found in nature? There's an app for that.
- Freedom: As much as we love the Internet, it can be one giant distraction when we actually need to get stuff done. Thankfully, some very smart folks have created apps like Freedom that allow you to block certain websites for a set period of time. We know you love having conversations on Twitter and Facebook as much as we do, but turning in that manuscript will feel pretty great too.