Free Writing Software Review: oStorybook

Welcome to Part 5 of my “Free Writing Software Review” series (a companion series to my earlier post, “Free Scrivener Alternatives“).

This week, we’re looking at yet another free software option: oStorybook!

oStorybook has very little online support, so figuring out how to use it required some deep exploration within the program.  I had quite a bit of trouble getting it unzipped and set up, and Java definitely needs to be updated before this program will run.  Also, the in-program links to FAQ and online help appear to be broken, so you’ll pretty much be on your own for Googling forums or help if you get stuck.

It’s a pretty basic setup, starting with creating your file, then creating your characters, locations, and scenes.

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oStorybook has many of the same features as other software I’ve reviewed in this series, including the ability to track appearance of characters, items, and locations throughout the story.

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It also has a separate “Ideas” section, which allows you to store ideas and/or “Flashes of Inspiration” and to organize them by where you are in the process of exploring or applying them.

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The program works by left-navigation menu, as many others do,  but does not provide analytical data such as word counts or allow you to set or track goals.

The program does allow you to export in a variety of formats, and to select which parts will be included in your export, which is nice.

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And, it’s completely FREE.  You can access oStorybook here: https://sourceforge.net/projects/ostorybook/files/?source=navbar.

Next week, Part 6 of my “Free Writing Software Review” series: Papel!

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5 thoughts on “Free Writing Software Review: oStorybook

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  1. This year, 2018, we start a new major version of oStorybook. If you want to make some suggestion please contact us on our forum. You are welcome. oStorybook will remain free.

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  2. I am sorry to say I’ve never experienced a more unintuitive tool than OStorybook. Very disappointed. The manual is virtually garbage, having amazing phrases such as “If the book is important to you”. That’s a big warning sign.

    Again, I’m sorry, I don’t like to write negative reviews but that software is a disaster. I cannot believe the number of times I wrote new text in a scene, clicked Update, then tried to close a dialog and was told I had not saved and would lose everything.

    The next thing I looked at were it’s export capabilities. Book export was a complete mystery as to how it decides what to export and what not to. Couldn’t find much of the text I wrote. The database export at least enabled me to find my own writings. I quickly dropped those into Word and exited this confusing software.

    Perhaps some real documentation would help. Note I was using 5.03 which is the most current on April 04, 2018

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