• Azalea Forrest

Why I Love Google Docs

There's nothing better than being able to hop between your desktop and laptop, or any computer at all, and just pull up Google Drive and all of your work is right there at your fingertips, ready to be added to, revised, and shared.


Google Documents is part of Google Drive, and I use them both in tandem constantly. I'm able to stay organized, and I love Drive's "Quick Access" feature, where it shows all of your most recently opened files.


I'll be honest, I see Drive and Docs as basically the same thing, because one is not used without the other for me.


Here's a screenshot of my writing folder:



As you can see, there's a lot of stuff in here! All of my writing, whether it be for fun, or serious works, or experimental, are all here for me. You can give your folders colors if you want to help differentiate between folders more easily, and it's just so readily accessible. Of course, you need a constant internet connection to use GDocs/Drive!


Which brings me to my next point, which I covered in my last post about backing up your work.


Say you'll be going somewhere you won't have the internet, or you just want to turn the internet off. Before you leave for the land of isolation, you can download any item from your drive to your PC's hard drive, as well as entire folders, and then work on it offline*, only to re-upload later when you've got a connection again. You can do that by right-clicking the item/folder and choosing 'download'. And that's it!


GDocs allows you to easily make bullet and number lists, as well as an outline to organize your chapters or even just your ideas. If you have a long document, you can just click on the 'chapter name' on the outline bar to instantly get to where you want in a document without endlessly scrolling through, or using the CTRL+F find feature (which is also useful!) It's not much different from using Word or any other offline word processor, except it's all online!


Something else you can do with GDocs is...share! You can make a share-link, or invite specific individuals to your document to either view, edit, or comment (or all three). I love the 'comment' feature, where individuals can highlight and leave comments or suggested edits on your work, or even just tell you how they feel as they're reading it. You can also invite people to a live writing session, by simply having them present on your document while you write at the same time! It's like Twitch...but for words. :) You can also have multiple people comment on one document or make individual documents for each reader for non-live sessions, and you can even have them contribute to a document directly if you so wish, like say, a collaboration project!


Now, I will say that GDocs can't do everything. Or maybe it can, and I just haven't mastered it yet. ;) But I don't use GDocs to format or to create ebooks. I use other programs for that, and I'll go over that in another post. I use GDocs specifically for writing, from the inkling of an idea, to world building, all the way up to the final draft. Because it's constantly connected, I don't have to worry about losing my work or constantly clicking 'save'. (Though I still always suggest backing up your work, even if it IS connected to a cloud.)


To sum up, GDocs is great because:


- Accessible anywhere there is an internet connection, on any PC or mobile device

- Easy to organize

- Easy outlines for quick access through a document

- Download your files to your PC for offline work

- Colored folders *sparkly eyes*

- Live comments/writing session

- Shareable/easy collaboration/live comments & suggestions

- All your writing in once place, constantly uploaded to a cloud


I'd love to hear what you love about your specific writing program, GDocs or otherwise. Feel free to comment, share, and subscribe!



*OfficeLibre is a great freeware writing program for those of you who want to write offline.

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