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If you're a freelancer or a small business looking into various options, then these tools might help. 

I often get asked what products I use, or "Which one of these is best?" "What do you recommend to do xyz...?" 

So these are a mixture of the paid products that I use myself and, where applicable, also some free alternatives.

I must emphasise, these are my recommendations - what I use or like. (I sometimes swap, so make it clear by placing an * next to the ones I personally use.)

What's important to understand is that you don't have to use any of these tools. Feel free to continue to use what you've got, or to go and find suitable alternatives. There are tons of apps and programs out there, so go for it. Again, these are what work for me.

Mac Users

Sorry, guys and gals, but I'm a pc person through-and-through. I do have a MacBookAir, but I only design Word templates for Mac on it. As such, the vast majority of my recommendations will be pc software. As I mentioned, I'll recommend the ones I use and, as I only really use Word on the Mac, it'd be unfair to do otherwise.

Note: broken links. I haven't checked all of the links here for some time, and if any are broken then I'd appreciate a heads-up. Please do your due diligence with these as I have a core set that I use but the rest might've have changed since I last checked. It's your responsibility and your choice--okay? 

Affiliate Links

So you know, this site contains affiliate links. As a result, rather than me putting whether a link is an affiliate link or not, your best bet is to assume that every single link on this site is an affiliate link - it's safer and easier that way.

I'm an ethical person. I believe in helping people, and I won't recommend what I don't believe is a good product. Now that might not be everyone's idea of a good product, but it's my experience and my opinion. As you'll have seen, if I used a product and didn't like it, I'll tell you why. If you use that product or go on to use it, no worries. Again, it's just my opinion and experience.

What Happens When I Click on an Affiliate Link and Your Buy?

If you click on a link and then make a purchase, then I may receive a commission as a result of that purchase. If that's a concern or an issue for you then please locate the product via your favourite search engine or whatever means you have and buy it that way.

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  • Even us power users curse Word sometimes, especially when for some unknown reason, one of our styles displays a black box instead of the number that it should show, corrupting the Table of Contents in the process. Or we fix a paragraph multiple times and it keeps insisting on changing back. Or we inherit a one-hundred page document that needs totally reformatting, one paragraph at a time. Enter Mr. Crowley’s course, Microsoft Word 2016 for Beginners*. 

    The one thing I liked best about the course was Mr. Crowley’s teaching style, clear, concise and reasonably paced. The material is thoughtfully laid out, one lesson flowing smoothly into the next.  Don’t let the course name fool you. After covering the basics, this course shows you how to do virtually anything that you might need. Document gotten so big that it could use a Table of Contents? Module 10. Need an index? Module 16. Want a numbered list and it needs sorted? Module 13. 

    These are just a few of the items taught in this course. You’ll definitely be scratching your head, thinking, “wow, I didn’t know Word could do that.

    Mr. Crowley could be called a “style and section evangelist”. He never misses an opportunity to emphasize that any misbehaving document probably has its roots in poorly-applied or unused styles and sections. I suspect this may be the root cause of my black squares for numbers identified earlier. After completing the course, the main benefit I have a better appreciation of Word’s bells and whistles, along with a resource for how to do things. I would recommend this course to users of all skill levels.  

    Rick Robertson Van Horn

    Sr. Systems Analyst & Sr. Programmer, & Word Power User

    *Note: this was the original name for this course.