So this week I have had the chance to review a new writing app. Inkvite is an app designed for users to ‘Collaborate, chat & create inspired short stories’, which simultaneously filled me with excitement-as someone who enjoys writing-and dread as someone who is exhausted by the idea of yet another social networking app joining my growing list. However after only a few hours with it I already feel it may have earned the right to a permanent place in my (and anyone with a story to share’s) go-to apps list.
Many stereotypes of the writer abound-portraying us as the diligent wordsmith so in love with their craft that they simply can’t stop putting pen to paper. Yet if you’re anything like me, and your enthusiasm (not to mention schedule) often butts heads with your creativity then Inkvite may be the answer.
Flash fiction, collaborative writing and the likes of fan fiction usually have about as much appeal to me as Brussels sprouts at Christmas (you enjoy as much as you want, but I’d rather not). Despite this, Inkvite manages to reinvent collaborative writing enough to convert even the the most ardent unbeliever. Inkvite allows you to co-write original pieces of fiction with up to four of your friends, or random strangers. You each can write up to 280 characters (Twitter-style) before then passing the piece of writing along to the next user to continue, and gradually build up a story together. It’s a digital version of Exquisite Corpse that manages to employ the usual social media trappings in a fun and engaging way.
Although I’m sure many people might be sceptical, one of the best parts of Inkvite is that it doesn’t try too hard to be a social networking app. Even though it revolves around a strong online community, focus never slips from the pure fun of writing. Yes, you can chat and network with other users but the stories are always the central of the experience, and contact between users is aimed towards the discussion of the writing. The whole experience feels downplayed in comparison to more writing-centric features-such as the “genre packs”. The packs in the app make browsing completely effortless, allowing you to dive in and out of stories in progress instantly-making contributions an incredibly casual and effortless activity. You can even add photos and illustration into your stories to make them look better.
If you do happen to create something you consider worth sharing, the app gives you ample opportunity to find a large audience for your writing. You can gain “accredited writer” status through regularly publishing material, as well as receiving good reviews and high ratings from other users. This also leads to an increase in recommendations, in turn helping your audience expand further. So whether you’re just looking to burn a few minutes on the bus or trying to seriously increase your following as a writer Inkvite has you covered.
As for me I’m currently busy trying to generate more homoerotic subtext in a story about why flower pots shouldn’t get drunk.
Inkvite is available for iPhone & iPod Touch as a free download from the App Store