Download of the day: WriteMonkey

Our daily pick of the best free Windows software – a distraction-eliminating text editor with brilliant time-mangement tools

When you really need to get down to some work, distractions like social media alerts and email notifications make it all too easy to procrastinate. Even with the best will in the world, they can easily eat up hours of your valuable time.

That's why you need WriteMonkey – a simple but very effective text editor that blocks out everything except the page you're working on. Theres no unnecessary clutter like toolbars, and if you need to look something up online, you can do so with a quick keyboard shortcut and then close the small browser window immediately once you've finished.

Why you need it

Upon starting WriteMonkey, you'll be struck by its minimal design – it automatically opens in full-screen mode, so there are no tantalizing browser windows begging to be clicked, and there aren't even any toolbars or icons to distract your attention. There's just a blinking cursor and a blank page waiting for you to get cracking on that important document.

Key features

Completely clutter-free

One-click word lookup tool

Customizable keyboard shortcuts

Timer and progress tracker

WriteMonkey isn't without its tricks though – all designed to help you work more efficiently. Clicking the word 'Scratch' at the bottom of the page opens a convenient notepad where you can jot down thoughts as you work, and you can save it as a separate document for future reference.

Right-clicking anywhere in WriteMonkey opens a menu of carefully curated tools, including one that enables you to select a word and quickly look it up on Google Images, Wikipedia, or various other sites without the distraction that comes with accessing your regular web browser with its attention-sapping bookmarks and favorites.

You can also tag certain parts of your document for quick access later, set timers and track your progress so far.

Download WriteMonkey free

The timer is particularly useful in combination with the Pomodoro Technique, which helps you get more done by interspersing periods of intense work with scheduled breaks. Give it a try – you'll be amazed how productive you can be.


Cat is TechRadar's downloads editor. She's been a tech journalist for six years on magazines including PC Plus, Official Windows, PC Format and Windows: Help & Advice (with a brief stint in PR for the nuclear industry in between). If you have a question about software, drop her a line!