Dabble vs. Novlr: Which is Best for Writers?

Doug Landsborough
April 20, 2023

Writing a novel is a challenging feat. From coming up with the initial idea to fleshing out characters, creating an engaging plot, and finally putting all the pieces together, the writing process has a lot of moving parts.

But there are few things as rewarding as writing a book.

Fortunately, technology has made it easier for fiction writers to streamline their workflow and stay organized. Two of the most popular online novel-writing platforms, Dabble and Novlr, have gained a lot of traction among the writing community and offer a range of tools and features to help writers bring their stories to life.

In this article, we'll dive into the features of both Dabble and Novlr and compare the two platforms to help you determine which is best for your writing journey. Whether you're an experienced author or just starting out on your writing journey, this blog will provide you with the information you need to make an informed decision and find your next novel-writing platform.

We'll go over the pros and cons of each platform, including their interface, organizational system, collaboration capabilities, unique tools, and pricing plans, so you can determine which one best fits your needs.

By the end of this blog, you'll have a clear understanding of each platform and be well-equipped to decide which one is right for you.

Writing a novel is a big project, and it's essential to have the right tools to help you stay focused and organized. So, sit back, relax, and let's explore the worlds of Dabble and Novlr and see which one is the perfect fit for your writing needs.

An Overview of Dabble

Dabble is a novel-writing platform designed to help fiction writers bring their stories to life. With a range of tools and features, Dabble provides a comprehensive writing solution for authors at any stage of their journey.

One of the standout features of Dabble is its free cloud storage. With a Dabble account, you can store all your writing projects in the cloud and access them from anywhere, on any device. This makes it easy to pick up where you left off, no matter where inspiration strikes.

Dabble also offers a range of writing tools to help you craft your story. Its Plot Grid is designed to help you develop your storylines and character arcs while keeping track of your story's twists and turns. With a built-in NaNoWriMo word tracker, you can set writing goals and track your progress toward completing your novel during National Novel Writing Month.

Within each Dabble project, which could be a single manuscript or an entire series, you can create all the folders you need for character profiles, worldbuilding, research, and anything else your imagination can come up with (and will want to reference later).

Another great feature of Dabble is its ability to export your work to various file formats, including Word and text files. This makes it easy to share your work with others and collaborate on your project. And if you need a little help with spelling and grammar, Dabble's spelling and grammar check tool is there to assist you, powered by ProWritingAid.

One of the most exciting features of Dabble is its collaboration capabilities. With Dabble, you can invite other writers to work on your project with you. Whether you're working on a novel together or need feedback on your writing, Dabble's co-authoring feature makes it easy to collaborate with others. And if you need to communicate with your co-author, Dabble's comments, stickies, and highlighting allow you to mark up specific sections of your text.

For those who like to work in a dark environment, Dabble offers a dark theme that's easy on the eyes. And get rid of all that clutter with automatic focus mode (which you can toggle manually, if you prefer).

Dabble also offers a range of formatting options to help you get your work looking just right. With its font themes, you can choose a style that best fits your writing. And if you need to make changes to your text, Dabble's find and replace feature makes it easy to make bulk changes in just a few clicks.

For those on the go, Dabble offers mobile support, making it easy to work on your novel from your smartphone or tablet. And if you need to import an existing project, Dabble's import through paste feature makes it easy to transfer your work from one platform to another.

Another great feature of Dabble is its online writing community, the Story Craft Café. With this online community, you can connect with other writers, share your work, and get feedback on your writing. And to help you stay motivated and inspired, Dabble offers free articles multiple times each week at DabbleU.

When all's said and done, Dabble is a comprehensive novel-writing platform offering various tools and features to help you bring your story to life. All of these features work together seamlessly while maintaining a modern UI. Dabble is an excellent choice for anyone looking for a comprehensive writing solution.

An Overview of Novlr

Novlr is a novel-writing platform that offers writers a comprehensive and user-friendly environment to craft their stories. Unlike most writing tools, Novlr is specifically designed for fiction writers, providing a range of features that cater to their unique needs. Some of Novlr's standout features include unlimited novels, version history, and a robust analytics tool.

One of Novlr's most appealing features is its unlimited novels. This means that you can work on as many stories as you like without any restrictions or limitations. This is a great feature for writers who like to work on multiple projects simultaneously or who prefer to take breaks from one story to focus on another.

In addition to unlimited novels, Novlr also provides version history, which is a lifesaver for writers who work on long projects. With version history, you can easily go back and see previous versions of your work, making it easier to keep track of changes and progress over time. This feature is also great for collaboration, as it allows you to see how your writing partner has edited or changed your work.

The best feature of Novlr is its in-depth analytics tool. This tool provides writers with a wealth of information about their writing habits, including word count, average writing speed, and writing streaks. These analytics can be very helpful for writers who want to track their progress, identify areas where they need to improve, and set achievable writing goals.

And guess what? All of that helps you become a better writer.

In addition to analytics, Novlr also offers custom goal setting, which allows writers to set daily, weekly, or monthly word count goals. This is a great feature for writers who need extra motivation and who want to stay on track with their writing. The streaks feature also helps writers maintain momentum and build good writing habits, as it shows them how many days in a row they have met their writing goals.

Novlr also provides the ability to share your writing with others. The platform allows you to easily share a read-only version of your work with others, and you can also control who has access to your writing.

In terms of file management, Novlr provides the ability to import and export .docx files, making it easy to transfer your work to other writing tools. Novlr also offers Google Drive and Dropbox backups, which provide an extra layer of security for your work.

And for those who want to take their writing to the next level, Novlr lets you publish your work in ePub format, allowing you to easily distribute your work in the digital marketplace.

Another great feature of Novlr is its partnership with companies like The Plottery, an author coaching service. Novlr premium members receive a 10% discount on partnered services, which can be very helpful for writers who want to take their writing to the next level. Additionally, Novlr offers regular free and premium articles and resources, which are a great way to stay informed and inspired as a writer.

Writers who use Novlr will find it is a comprehensive and user-friendly writing platform specifically designed for fiction writers. With its unlimited novels, version history, analytics tool, and partnerships with author coaching services, Novlr is an excellent choice for writers who want to take their writing to the next level.

Comparing Dabble and Novlr

Dabble is a comprehensive tool for fiction writers, providing a wide range of features to help you build and organize your plot, worldbuilding, and characters. With Dabble, you can create unlimited manuscripts, including keeping all the manuscripts for a series in one project for easy reference to your notes.

The Plot Grid in Dabble is second to none, allowing you to create intricate and detailed stories with ease. Additionally, Dabble has daily and project goal-tracking with days off, giving you the motivation you need to reach your writing goals.

On the other hand, Novlr is designed to help writers focus on the writing process itself. Novlr has analytics and goal-tracking tools, but they're more streamlined and focused on your writing progress than Dabble’s, including word count goals and streaks. And, Novlr integrates with Google Drive or Dropbox, depending on your preference, to provide a secure and convenient backup for your writing.

When it comes to importing and exporting, both Dabble and Novlr offer options to import and export your writing, but only Novlr allows you to publish your manuscript in ePub format. If you're looking for a way to share your writing with the world, Novlr is the way to go.

However, if you're looking for more resources to help you grow as a writer, Dabble offers a variety of free articles and a vibrant community through the Story Craft Café.

Both Dabble and Novlr offer dark modes and focusing features to help you concentrate on your writing. They also both allow for font customization, so you can find the perfect font to match your writing style.

Dabble has a desktop version and a web version, meaning you can write anywhere, on any device, while Novlr is entirely web-based, also allowing you to write anywhere, on any device, but without a desktop app. Both programs offer exceptional customer service, both through email and live chat (when available), ensuring that you have the support you need to achieve your writing goals.

When it comes to NaNoWriMo integration, both Dabble and Novlr have tools to help you track your progress and reach your goals during National Novel Writing Month. Whether you're looking for a comprehensive tool to help you build your story or a focused and streamlined platform to help you stay on track, Dabble and Novlr both have you covered.

Dabble vs. Novlr: Pricing

Both platforms offer different tiers, granting you access to different features. Both are subscription-based.

Dabble Pricing

Dabble offers monthly or yearly subscriptions, with the yearly option saving you 20% off the price. Dabble also has a lifetime purchase option of $499 and offers discounts on subscriptions for teachers and students.

Basic: for beginners just getting started

  • $10/month USD
  • Unlimited manuscripts
  • Cloud backup and sync
  • Access on any device
  • Goals and stats
  • Manuscript Organization
  • Spell check
  • Text highlighting
  • Email support

Standard: for those wanting a bit more

  • $15/month USD
  • Includes everything in Basic plus:
  • Plot Grid
  • Story notes
  • Focus mode
  • Dark mode
  • Sticky notes
  • Comments

Premium: For those working on a publishing track 

  • $20/month USD
  • Includes everything in Standard plus:
  • Advanced grammar and style checks
  • Co-authoring
  • Priority support via chat

Novlr Pricing

Like Dabble, Novlr offers a 20% discount when you pay annually and has a lifetime payment option of $499.

Free: Write your book

  • Unlimited words (1 novel)
  • Version history
  • Analytics, goals, and streaks
  • Share your writing
  • Import and export .docx

Pro: More projects and features

  • $18/month
  • Everything included in Free plus:
  • Unlimited novels
  • Proofreader
  • Google Drive backups
  • Publish to ePub
  • Archive novels
  • Save 10% on Novlr Services

Is Dabble or Novlr Better for You?

Dabble has a wider range of tools, features and worldbuilding tools that make it ideal for writers who want to bring their stories and characters to life. With its cloud storage and daily backups, it provides peace of mind for writers and ensures that their work will not be lost.

On top of that, it has a desktop version that doesn't require an internet connection, making it easy to write anywhere, at any time. The community-driven development process and regular updates voted on by the users ensure that Dabble is always at the forefront of innovation.

Finally, the ability to store multiple manuscripts in one project makes it a great choice for writers who want to write a series, as they can easily reference their notes across different works.

On the other hand, Novlr is geared toward writers who want to focus on the writing process and build strong writing habits.

With its analytics and streaks, it provides a detailed picture of a writer's progress and makes it easy to keep track of one's writing goals. It also offers a range of partnerships with discounts on author coaching services and other writing-related products, making it ideal for writers who want to take their work to the next level.

Additionally, Novlr's ePub export feature makes it easy for writers to publish their work.

Ultimately, both Dabble and Novlr have been built for fiction writers and offer similar capabilities, with the exception of a few key differences that set them apart. The decision of which one is better for you comes down to personal preference and the priorities of your writing journey.

Whether you want to focus on the writing process and analytics or have a wider range of tools to help you bring your story and characters to life, both Dabble and Novlr have something unique to offer.

Whichever You Prefer, Get Writing!

As a writer, your dream is to bring your characters, worlds, and stories to life. With the power of these platforms, you can now bring those dreams to reality in a way that's easier, more efficient, and more enjoyable.

Dabble's two-week free trial is truly free, with no credit card required to start using it. You'll have access to all of Dabble's features, including its robust plot and character development tools, goal tracking, community support, and more.

Novlr's free version is also an excellent opportunity to try out most of the platform's features and see if it's the right fit for you, and it doesn’t require a credit card, either. With Novlr, you can track your writing progress, get analytics and streaks, and connect with a supportive community of writers.

So what are you waiting for? Start your free trial of Dabble today and experience the power of the world's best writing software. And if Novlr is more your style, start your free version and see for yourself why it's the go-to platform for writers who want to take their writing to the next level.

No matter which platform you go with, the next step is clear: get writing!

Doug Landsborough

Doug Landsborough can’t get enough of writing. Whether freelancing as an editor, blog writer, or ghostwriter, Doug is a big fan of the power of words. In his spare time, he writes about monsters, angels, and demons under the name D. William Landsborough. When not obsessing about sympathetic villains and wondrous magic, Doug enjoys board games, horror movies, and spending time with his wife, Sarah.