Tag Archives: creative

15 Free Tools For Cash-strapped Creatives

15 Free Tools For Cash-strapped Creatives

Being creative doesn’t have to cost a thing.

This is my latest post on Medium. Please feel free to join me there. I hope this list is of help to you all.


I thought we might as well start with those platforms that have given so many people a voice on the internet. Blogging can offer community, pride to those who thought they’d never be heard, and perhaps most of all, place. Yet despite being the gateway to technology to those who have never experienced it, the big blogging platforms still remain free.

Medium (Multiple Platforms) For those who like a clean, quiet and thoughtful place to write.

WordPress.com (Multiple Platforms) The original noisy neighbour, WordPress powers most of the internet, and although harder to use than some, still remains accessible and highly customisable.

Blogger (Web) Google owns and administrates this platform. Easy to use and powered by internet royalty, Blogger is often the introduction to the world beyond our window.

Browsing the Internet

I think three browser recommendations is more than enough. All are free. All are very good, to lesser and greater degrees. And perhaps most of all these days, each can be made as safe as possible.

Google Chrome (Multiple Platforms)

Firefox (Multiple Platforms)

Opera (Multiple Platforms)


WorkFlowy (Multiple Platforms) WorkFlowy is a place to write your thoughts, prep, or organise a whole project. Exceptionally easy to use, although let down a little by its mobile apps, WorkFlowy can soon become the go to place for creatives. Highly Recommended.

The Outliner of Giants (Web) To those familiar with using templates, this outliner will be a dream. Again, easy to use and available in any browser.

Google Keep (Multiple Platforms) Google Keep is a notebook, place for reminders, and a generally bright and visual place to store notes. A highly underrated part of the Google portfolio, you’ll be surprised by this one.

Information Capture

Pocket (Multiple Platforms) If you’ve ever wanted to stash, store, or explore information you find whilst browsing the net or even other apps, Pocket provides that place. Available as an app, extension and any number of other ways, Pocket is superb.

Instapaper (Multiple Platforms) As above, but more text orientated. Instapaper provides a good place to read those things you might not have had time for initially. Highly recommended.


There is much beauty on the internet but it tends to be scattered around. Here are some wonderful sites that you might like to spend an hour or three perusing.

Pinterest (Multiple Platforms) Many peoples’ favourite image site. Pinterest has everything from photos to art and more. Beautiful in presentation and with the offer of community, a popular and easy to use wonder.

Deviant Art (Multiple Platforms) Deviant Art offers predominantly art of a fantasy nature although they would say far more. Some of the illustrations on there are breathtaking.

Pixabay (Multiple Platforms) Photography based, Pixabay offers free imagery to all and what staggering imagery it is.


There are many places to write without ever downloading a thing even though you could. Here are a few of the more reputable offerings.

Google Docs (Multiple Platforms) The premier online word processor that is now also available almost everywhere. Good for all types of writing it is hard to find any fault with Google Docs.

Celtx (Multiple Platforms) For the budding screenwriter. Celtx won’t be much good to anyone other than the next James Cameron, but if you are, knock yourself out.

LibreOffice (Multiple Platforms) For those who can’t afford Microsoft’s offerings, (which is a lot these days). Beloved of those who use it, LibreOffice is a great free option.

Hemingway (Web) A place to write and have that writing checked, this site offers something a little bit different. Well worth trying, and truly beneficial.

Often the only thing standing between us and our dreams is a little help. I hope some of the above websites and applications can offer just that.

Please note: As far as I am aware, all the above are either free or offer free structuring at the time of writing.

Thank you for reading


Richard M. Ankers / Author of The Eternals Series

The Eternals

Hunter Hunted

Into Eternity (Very Soon!)


Florence: My Home

 In the lightest shades of morning,
 Through burnished haze of new day,
 I stood atop one final rolling ridge
 And looked down upon its understated splendour.
 The Arno weaved a languorous route
 Under the Ponte Vecchio and out to Ligurian Sea,
 The emerging sun lighting its way out of respect.
 The Duomo rose above all in towering majesty,
 A pale goliath amongst so much to astound.
 Distant bells ushered Florentines to work,
 Or rather to create,
 For no one could truly work in a place such as this.
 Golden tints to rival that of the sun
 Sprinkled my vista with delights,
 And for the first time, I knew doubt!
 I looked to weathered boots,
 Calloused hands and ragged clothing, and knew shame.
 Could I descend into such beauty
 A sullying shadow amongst the angelic?
 The answer fell at my feet.
 My manuscript, the work I had put my whole life into,
 A work that required the finesse of a superior environment;
 One more conducive to the creative,
 A place of artisans, thinkers,
 And those who lived as free spirits.
 I stooped to pick it up and knew I had no choice:
 Florence was my home,
 I’d just never been there until now.

The Kiss

Gnarled and twisted
Grasping for
My little throat
She did claw
With cackling laugh
And toothless grin
My mouth to kiss
She dragged me in
But wick I was
And far too fast
As slipped I did
From witch’s grasp
And turn to her
To state my case
“You’ll not kiss me
Not this smooth face”
And swift I dashed
Into the night
Shouting as fled
“Gran lost this fight!”

(Image courtesy 3docean.net )

The Deep Breath

Can you feel it?
Electricity simmers,
I love to rock in my chair
Under the old porch
Watching the orchids
Alive in the night.
I feel it on my chest.
I gasp!
This is it,
The moment,
The heavens rumble, shake.
Sky ignites.
I feel, so mortal
I feel:
The Earth sucks in;
I rock in my chair,

(Image courtesy riktorsashen on deviantart.com)


Quick note: the snake in this picture was in a tree outside my hotel at the top of the Swiss Alps. I thought it more likely to see a Yeti than that!

A shaft of light
Slides effortlessly
Between obstruction
Silent assassin
Tasting the future
Cold eyes
Resisting joy
To focus only on
Jaw dislocating
Perfect predation
Killing with a
Lover’s embrace
A gliding death
Those foolish enough
To tempt
History, myth
And fable
In the devil’s eyes
Lies torment
And I for one
Choose not
To sample it

In Darkest Night

A flickering deceives his hunter’s eye as lantern spits and then runs dry.
The trees they seem to stoop and grasp towards this man, his dye is cast.
For normal wood this place is not, as every tree holds hangman’s knot.
And every creaking, groaning branch claws to him as if to snatch.
The hunter’s made of sturdy stuff but fear he has of this enough.
Compounded, frightful, his nerves they ache, as crow does call and storm does break.
Retrace his steps through wind and rain, but trail is lost as well as brain.
Lost and scared he cannot think his way through all this blackest ink.
Torn to bits by briar and thorn the hunter dies, his death forlorn.
For when you hunt without a light, you’re tempting fate in darkest night.

(Image courtesy wyldraven on deviantart.com)

A Crowded Ride

This is a post inspired by a chat with my good friend, Spumoni Caddo. Check out spumonicaddo.wordpress.com for some wonderful poetry.

It was unordinary,
An unusual scene,
A milling of children
As if in a dream.
For weeks I’d had
Peace on my own
Now all that I dreaded
Invaded my home.
But when I say home
I really mean bus,
A long thing with wheels
And no usual fuss.
So many faces
Such uproarious noise
Some of it girls
But mostly it boys.
This signalled a countdown
That I’d start right now
Till holiday time
And peace here somehow.
Please don’t get me wrong
I love little kids,
Just not on my travels,
I want to get rid.
England, you shout!
No, the U.S of A.
Where bus rides are happy,
Kids have room to play.
Well, I haven’t got much choice,
In fact,
I’ve got none.
So I’ll sit here all quiet
And pray them begone.

(Image courtesy iss.schoolwires.com and Google images)