8 Desktop Blog Editors To Make Your Blogging Faster

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Most of us have used word processors such as Microsoft Word or Apple’s Pages. These things are super easy to use when you compare it to the post interface inside of WordPress.

Don’t get me wrong – they’ve done a great job with the post interface in WordPress. However, there are certain things you can do with a local program that are much harder to pull off inside a web browser.

Did you know that there are programs you can run on your computer to post to your blog? You don’t really HAVE to use the WordPress post interface. In this post, I’ll go through a few of the leading options.

Why Use A Blog Client Over The Web Interface?

There are several reason, really.

  1. You don’t have to be online to work on blog posts. You can write posts and draft them locally, then draft/publish to your blog whenever you’re online.
  2. The interface is generally much easier to use.
  3. Usually you have some really nice formatting options available to you that you won’t have from the web interface.
  4. You have a local backup of your posts.
  5. You can manage multiple blogs from the same place.

Convinced yet? OK, onto some of your best options…

Windows Live Writer (Win)

If you run Windows, Windows Live Writer is, by far, your best option. Quite frankly, it even blows away most options on the Mac, too, but unfortunately this is a Windows-only option.

Windows Live Writer works with almost any blogging platform, including WordPress (of course). It offers full WYGIWYG (what you see is what you get), along with the ability to download your theme and make the post look pretty much like it will on the web once you post it. Keep in mind, however, that some themes don’t get picked up quite right so you may need to use the default theme when writing posts.

WLW really shines with how it deals with images. Simply drag images anywhere from your computer onto the editor and it inserts into your post. You can easily resize, crop, add effects – all from within the editor.

Even better – it is FREE from Microsoft. So, if you’re running Windows, you really have no reason not to use this. It is like having MS Word for your blog, only less complicated.

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BlogJet (Win)

BlogJet looks to be another really nice blog editor for Windows. They offer a stripped-down version for free, but the full version comes at a cost.

It offers pretty much all the features of Windowsย Live Writer, which of course begs the question, “Why not just use Live Writer since it is free?” And you’d have a point. ๐Ÿ™‚ That said, it does offer a few tid-bits that Live Writer doesn’t (such as auto-replace, where you can use shortcuts words to be replaced with longer phrases or links and save time). It is really up to you if those things are important.

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BlogDesk (Win)

BlogDesk looks to be a nice blog editor with the usual features, including WYSIWYG editing, image editing (such as cropping, rotation, etc.), spell-checking, tag generation, etc. You can also grab a PDF from their site to show you how to use it. This one is free, although to be honest – Windows Live Writer is better anyway (and it is also free).

RocketPost (Win)

RocketPost looks to be a pretty nice editor with some pretty handy features for saving time. In several ways, it actually outshines Windows Live Writer. IT comes in at $49 for the multi-blog license, however.

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MacJournal (Mac)

Pitched as a journaling application, MacJournal is actually pretty full-featured and has the ability to post to blogs as well. You can also record podcasts and videos from inside the app and attach them to your blog posts. In my opinion, this option is probably best for personal bloggers who use their blogs more as journals than anything else. You’ve got a fully secure journal inside the program, but you can choose to publish some or all of them to your blog.

MyBlogEdit (Mac)

I have no idea why Mac blog editors have had such a problem with WYSIWYG editing. Windows options have had it for years, and Mac excels at so many things. However, WYSIWYG blog posting from the Mac has been a problem for awhile, and MyBlogEdit is no exception. This looks to be a nice editor, except for the fact that you have to write your post in HTML. Only in such an environment would “syntax highlighting” be considered a cool feature. But, hey, if you’re the geeky type, knock yourself out. It looks like a nice editor aside from being in the stone age.

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Ecto (Mac)

Ecto is a nice editor and, unlike the last one, has WYSIWYG editing. It supports multiple blogs, local editing, image manipulation, etc. It also has the ability to integrate with common RSS readers, making it easier to repost things from around the web. Their website sure does suck, though.

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MarsEdit (Mac)

MarsEdit is currently my personal favorite for the Mac, and what I’m currently using to type this very post. As of version 3, it now has rich text editing (aka WYSIWYG). It isn’t as pretty as Live Writer, though. The formatting options are in a dropdown menu rather than a nice toolbar. That being said, MarsEdit is a powerful editor, supporting local editing, image and media insertion, etc.

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My Recommendations

At this time, I think Microsoft’s Windows Live Writer is the best blog client for Windows, and MarsEdit is the best one on the Mac.

Unfortunately, the selection of decent editors on the Mac is lagging behind that of Windows. Features like WYSIWYG editing seem to be hard to come by on the Mac. Perhaps it is due to some infrastructure thing that I’m not aware of which makes it more difficult to do. If you’re more of an advanced Mac user, you could run something like VMware Fusion, thereby allowing you to run Live Writer on the Mac.

Either way, I do recommend you explore using a blog editor if you’re not already. It makes writing for your blog a more streamlined experience. Most bloggers deal with lack of time, so why not do what you can to shave some hassle off the experience, right? ๐Ÿ™‚

53 Comments

  1. Andreas says:

    Note that windows live writer has a much newer version than the one pictured ๐Ÿ˜‰ make sure you search for Windows Live Writer and get the beta edition for 2010

    1. David Risley says:

      Yeah, I know. I just couldn’t find a screenshot for it, and since I’m not on Windows, I couldn’t get it. Actually, I do run Windows XP in a virtual machine on my Mac and I have WLW on there, but the new beta version apparently doesn’t run on XP. Oh well. ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. Andreas says:

        Doh that’s a shame as new version fixes a load of annoying bugs of old version – surprised Microsoft don’t look into doing a fully featured version that you have to pay for. That is one blogging tool upgrade I’d be happy to splash the cash on ๐Ÿ˜‰

        1. David Risley says:

          If they ever ported WLW to the Mac, I’d gladly pay for it. Doubt they will, tho.

        2. David Risley says:

          If they ever ported WLW to the Mac, I’d gladly pay for it. Doubt they will, tho.

  2. Thanks for the recommendations. I’m a PC ๐Ÿ˜‰ so I’ll give WLW a whirl. It’s time to break the habit of writing all my posts when connected with the blogs. Thanks again, great recommendations.

  3. Monte says:

    Well if MS has changed Live Writer and it will not run on XP then I quess I will keep using Front Page for my blog. Why take the time to learn how to use something when what you have is just as functional?

    Still FP (Office 2003) on Windows 7 seems to have a few problems when it has nested tables, knida weird.

    So maybe I will dl Live Writer for my new laptop, XP would not load on it because it has a i series processor.

    Thanks for the thoughts Dave…

    1. Monte says:

      I downloaded WIndows Live Writer and loaded it up. Not to bad. I like to see my souce code because sometimes FP puts line breaks in the paragraphs and makes the blog post look disjointed with broken sentences.

      I posted my article for tomorrow at 7 AM, if it works then I may use LW more often, like in setting up a weeks worth of articles in advance.

      When I do it with WP it breaks my TweetMeMe plugin for two or more posts.

      BTW:
      LW does work on XP, from the download page requirements:

      Note
      Windows Live Movie Maker and the slide show feature of Windows Live Photo Gallery aren’t supported on Windows XP.

  4. Gurl says:

    Nice round up, David, and a great resource for bloggers who aren’t using desktop applications for their blogging.

    I’ve been using Live Writer since before I started my self-hosted blog. Its pretty awesome and one must love the free-ness of it ๐Ÿ™‚

    I also like the look and features of RocketPost. Bookmarked that one so I can grab a free trial when I know I will have the money to upgrade if I like it:)

    Thanks for the look at some programs I’d not considered for blogging. The techogeek in me is very happy ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Jered says:

    This is actually quite interesting, David. The thought of using a blog editor never crossed my mind. It’s amazing to me what technology can do nowadays.

    Thanks for sharing this.

  6. bryan m. says:

    There is also a decent desktop editor for Mac called Blogo.

  7. Hugh Kimura says:

    Thanks, I never thought of using a local program. I’m going to switch to Mac soon, but I’m glad there is still some benefit to having a PC.

  8. Larry James says:

    Thanks for this David, like some of the others I did not even know that using a desk top client to publish posts was an option. I am using a PC with winxp, and I am hoping that Windows Live Writer works as “Monte” claims.

  9. luis says:

    The ink on your typeribbon is really great…makes me want to read through everything you write each and everytime.:)

  10. Maisales says:

    Great article. I’ve been battling with getting posts done on both platforms as WP is clunky at times. Now I travel more with the iPad it will be even better as it’s very difficult to move with WP on the iPad.

    1. David Risley says:

      Well, the apps I listed above won’t help you on an Ipad. ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. Great post but let me warn people here – don’t ever use microsoft word to compose blog posts and then copy paste the content into your blog. As much as I like to say microsoft sucks but microsoft word has there own encoding and will insert all sorts of code into your blog and you will end up with all sorts of incorrectly handled tags in the HTML/XML compliance etc etc. A big headache I learned the hard way when I checked my blog for compliance and found they were all messed up by microsoft. I like to compose in notepad is much better but what I use is a firefox plugin called Scribefire its cool because it pops up in your firefox browser (the bottom half) and allows you to post to multiple blogs even upload pictures and add ads from its partners. Really powerful blogging software, I first started with Qmana but Qmana you have to download software but Scribefire is just a plugin and for free. Note: I no longer have microsoft word on this computer…..

    1. Dorothy says:

      Ben, that’s interesting about MSWord not working when you paste it into WP blog. In a writing group I belonged to for years, we sent our manuscripts to each other by copying and pasting fron Word, never an attachment. Worked like a charm. You make me feel so much better about not having Word on my present computer.

      1. I think I must have had close to 15 posts all copied from word and man it was trouble when I had to copy each post to notepad and then back to my blog. now I use scribefire its so cool

        1. Rich says:

          In WordPress: ALT+SHIFT+Z, Paste As Plain Text (folder icon with “T” in it).

          Problem solved. No notepad or ScribeFire necessary.

          1. ebooksulit says:

            Hmmm…. haven’t tried this yet… will try this soon. Thanks for the tip.

    2. Serena says:

      Regarding the issue of copying and pasting from Microsoft Word, I have been pasting directly into the HTML view, rather than the Visual view, and I don’t see any extra code in the HTML view. Am I missing something?….I have not checked my blog for compliance yet, and now I’m worried….

  12. Dorothy says:

    The perfect day to read this blog. I miss MSWord on my old Dell, but refuse to buy the program for new computer. Today, I lost practically a whole article I’d written on Open Office, just like that, poof, with no trace of it anywhere. I am forever touching the keyboard of my new Windows (sensitive) 7 in the wrong place. And this happens a lot.

    Yes, there are problems with WP posting, but it’s better than Market Samurai. Not crazy for Google docs and Open Office, though people praise them. Bravo to you for suggesting Windows Live Writer. Will sure try it.

    Sorry to be so mouthy. You didn’t need to know all this, but you caught me just right.

  13. Dorothy says:

    The perfect day to read this blog. I miss MSWord on my old Dell, but refuse to buy the program for new computer. Today, I lost practically a whole article I’d written on Open Office, just like that, poof, with no trace of it anywhere. I am forever touching the keyboard of my new Windows (sensitive) 7 in the wrong place. And this happens a lot.

    Yes, there are problems with WP posting, but it’s better than Market Samurai. Not crazy for Google docs and Open Office, though people praise them. Bravo to you for suggesting Windows Live Writer. Will sure try it.

    Sorry to be so mouthy. You didn’t need to know all this, but you caught me just right.

  14. Anonymous says:

    It’s funny – I struggle with the WordPress built-in editor constantly but never thought of using a desktop app to do it. I run a Mac, but will definitely do some trial versions to see if some of my common issues get solved. Thanks!

  15. tsitalia says:

    Thanks for the post. I just switch to MAC few days ago and I was looking for an application. I’ll try MarsEdit

  16. Brigitte says:

    Great idea, I downloaded the program immediately as I am still struggling with the wordpress editor. By the way Ben, the latest wordpress version lets you paste from word, there is a little button on the kitchen sink toolbar called ‘paste from word’. It takes all the code out.

  17. Bradley says:

    I have a client who didn’t want to log into the backend of WordPress at all. I set him up with a desktop client. Works like a charm. It evens provides somewhat of a backup in addition to what I was already doing for him.

    The one I setup for him is called Zoundry Raven.

  18. lehenryjr says:

    This is a good post and I also believe your right about Windows Live Writer.

    Windows Live Writer is an awesome tool for offline blogging tool with a WYSIWYG editor. It interfaces with just about any blog service [Blogger, LiveJournal, TypePad, WordPress, etc.] If you’re a blogger you’ll find this tool incredibly helpful.

    There’s a beta version right now, if you’ve been living under a rock and don’t know.

    If not already, download the beta…
    http://explore.live.com/windows-live-essentials-beta

    If your attempting to run Windows Live Writer Wave 4 with Windows XP and you’re having an issue, you should review the system requirements.

    Link:
    http://explore.live.com/windows-live-beta-system-requirements

    The summary is that Windows Live Writer Wave 4 isn’t compatible with Windows XP; it’s compatible with Vista Sp2 and greater.

    Windows Live Writer is my choice for offline blog WYSIWYG editors.
    Nice post.

    Until next time,
    LEHenryJr

  19. I’ve been searching for a client I like as well, and I’m definitely going to give Mars Edit a shot. Thanks for the recommendation David!

    MR

  20. Anonymous says:

    Will probably choose to go with WLW since I can run that through Parallels on the Mac. Thanks for the links, David.

  21. Anonymous says:

    David, this is great! Thank you for doing this post…I, too, never knew there were blog desktop editors.
    Terri

  22. Shazzalive says:

    Excellent article Dave. – Many thanks for sharing. I just wondered, as I was reading, about Linux users ( I normally use Windows 7 and XP, but I’m broadminded. ๐Ÿ™‚ ) Other than running WLW in Wine or something, are there any specifically open-source Linux-blog-editors that you could recommend for the Linux community?Secondly I read something about downloading the beta of WLW a number of times in the comments. Although Microsoft’s publicly-released betas are usually pretty sturdy; I’m still a bit nervous about running beta software after previous bad experience and generally tend to wait for a final version. Remember, with betas, any bugs in that particular beta version of whatever that somehow disrupt other things are your own responsibility, and basically in downloading and running beta software you in effect sign a disclaimer in doing so.

  23. Julius says:

    Great review of these 8 blog editors. I’ll try WLW today. It’s also interesting to find out if it is accessible to me and my assistive software.

  24. ebooksulit says:

    Is there anything for linux like Ubuntu???

  25. Doesn’t LiveWriter (or any of these for that matter) add that nasty shit in the html?

  26. Steve says:

    I like Windows Live Writer. Just this month I found that I could add a watermark to all photos on my blog using Live Writer, how cool is that?

  27. This list is very helpful! Thank you for sharing it with us. I could really use these for creating a blog about online MBA programs. Iโ€™m just starting out and Iโ€™m looking for ways on how I can publish my blogs easier. Iโ€™m a PC user and I think I would try Windows Live Writer. Hope it works out! I didnโ€™t even think that there are programs like this. It would be very helpful for me since Iโ€™m just starting. Iโ€™m really glad that I came across your list. Hope you continue on this blog! Iโ€™m very grateful for people like you who are very generous to share their ideas. Many people could really benefit from it! Thanks again!

  28. Allan Ward says:

    I’d never thought about using a desktop editor until now. I’m downloading WLW to have a look at what it can do. It definitely looks like a good option, although I haven’t found the WP interface to be that bad.

  29. John Finster says:

    Recently I downloaded Live Writer 2011 and fell in love with it because of the way it handles images inlcuding videos and slideshows. Also discovered it’s possible to blog from Winword 2007. Yep, just create a blog entry in Word, then go to Publish. Publish as a blog comes up as an option. When chosen, your content will appear in a single document interface which neatly resembles Live Writer 2011. The great thing is, the Word-Blog editor is slightly more feature-rich with respect to formatting text, Drawing and WordArt. A noticeable drawback is, you can’t retrieve posts already created and published to the web – which is possible with Live Writer 2011. However, it is possible to create a post and publish it directly to your blog server from Word.

    Once published, the code is greatly simplified and images and art created in Word are converted to .png files. All in all, they compliment each other very nicely. I see Ben Sanami’s entry below this one recommending people not to use Word to compose blog posts. He may have a point if you are using a version prior to 2003 or if you simply cut and paste your content – which isn’t necessary if you just navigate to the Publish option in Word. Once you elect Publish as a Blog, the blog editor opens up and NO MESSY CODE ๐Ÿ™‚

  30. John Finster says:

    Recently I downloaded Live Writer 2011 and fell in love with it because of the way it handles images inlcuding videos and slideshows. Also discovered it’s possible to blog from Winword 2007. Yep, just create a blog entry in Word, then go to Publish. Publish as a blog comes up as an option. When chosen, your content will appear in a single document interface which neatly resembles Live Writer 2011. The great thing is, the Word-Blog editor is slightly more feature-rich with respect to formatting text, Drawing and WordArt. A noticeable drawback is, you can’t retrieve posts already created and published to the web – which is possible with Live Writer 2011. However, it is possible to create a post and publish it directly to your blog server from Word.

    Once published, the code is greatly simplified and images and art created in Word are converted to .png files. All in all, they compliment each other very nicely. I see Ben Sanami’s entry below this one recommending people not to use Word to compose blog posts. He may have a point if you are using a version prior to 2003 or if you simply cut and paste your content – which isn’t necessary if you just navigate to the Publish option in Word. Once you elect Publish as a Blog, the blog editor opens up and NO MESSY CODE ๐Ÿ™‚

  31. YoU says:

    I am a Mac user and use myBlogEdit for my WordPress. The reasons why some Mac apps only have code interface vary but some of them focus on the simplicity and consistentcy. A visual editor does not provide WYSIWYG, while code editor can give you the whole picture. MyBlogEdit works like a charm to me and I really like the idea behind it.

  32. April Atkins says:

    Blogo makes it easy to connect to most blogging programs and allows for multiple accounts. An obvious dropdown menu makes it easy to post to different blogs. Want to edit a prior post? Thereโ€™s a slide out drawer that makes the last 10 entries one click away from editing.
    Blogo is a pretty good version one program. Its design is extremely well thought out and easy to use. It does lack a few features that Iโ€™m not willing to live without. The inability to add alternate text to an image is one. Another is the lack of find or search and replace in the editor. Thatโ€™s really not excusable in a modern program.
    I also find the rich text editing features too limiting. Specifically I want to see the inclusion of headings in editing menu. That is another SEO friendly option that I consider essential. I also find that the HTML that Blogo writes is a bit verbose. Every paragraph tag gets written with styleโ€clear: both;โ€. If you have a site built with floating elements, as this one is, that can ruin the layout. I had to drop the text into BBEdit to remove the offending inline styles.

  33. John says:

    I would suggest to consider also another software named BlogHatter (only for Windows). I found it over CNET download:

    http://download.cnet.com/BlogHatter-Demo/3000-10247_4-75206491.html?tag=mncol;1

    The demo is limited, the full version is really awesome. You can manage multiple blogs accounts (it supports blogger.com and wordpress). It is able to import posts from txt file, has a great replacement tool. You can search and import videos (from youtube) and images (from google images and flickr) directly from the user interface. Of course, you can schedule the post etc.. It has a good inbuilt wysiwyg editor (you can edit also the html manually). The support is really responsive and has solved a problem I had very quickly.

  34. Thanks for taking the time. Just getting started here, and you explained what I was looking for exactly!

    Thanks again

  35. Thanks for Great post!
    I also belie Windows Live Writer is the best of all Desktop Blog Editors.

  36. i use Zoundry Rave, for Blogspot and wordpress based blog – and i’m satisfied so far… and above all this software is free ๐Ÿ™‚

    thank for the posting ๐Ÿ™‚

  37. Canon says:

    BlogJet (“product”) is distributed as try before you buy. First line of the license agreement from their free download. Further down, “Anyone may use this software during a test period of 30 days.”

  38. Aamer says:

    Very nice and knowledgeable post. There is a recent desktop blogging software in the market, SmartXBlog, http://www.smartxblog.com. However supports only WordPress now, but the most interesting feature that caught my attention is its flow, layout and design that make you so comfortable rather you enjoying working with your post. It also supports image editing within the application that is quite helpful for rich blogging. Another key feature is RSS reader that is part of the software, one of the best feature i ever saw in any blogging software, helps you to research on content while publishing. Comments popup alerts has also been a unique and quality feature of this software.

    It comes with 30 days trial. I suggest you should try it. http://www.smartxblog.com

  39. Abena says:

    Thanks for this article – very helpful. If I were looking for an offline blogging platform that could be used for an ‘in house’ audience at school, which would you recommend? So, basically the posts would be viewable inside the school but not outside. I know Blogger (and other providers) allow you to invite readers or readership can be restricted to within a domain, but I’m looking for a solution that could be hosted on-site without the need for an Internet connection at all. Any ideas?

  40. Rowandro says:

    I never tried a desktop editor before to blog, but after reading this I might give BlogJet and Windows Live Writer a try :-).

  41. Miraz Mac says:

    Among them only Windows Live Writer made my day. Other softwares has several issues. Like: no featured image option, no tags option etc. Awesome post anyway!!

  42. Barbara Ford says:

    Hello, I can’t find any dates on the article or the replies, but today is May 28, 2015, and as of three days ago, Windows Live Writer will no longer publish to blogger. Many are up-in-arms, and there is a huge debate as to whether WLW or Google is responsible for “fixing” the problem. I found your article by searching for desktop blog editors to use instead of WLW (which I always LOVED). Do you know if any of your other recommendations still work? (Google changed something about authorizations.)

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