Todoist: A free online to-do list for writing tasks

In the world of writing, there’s much for writers to do during the time between writing a piece and getting it published.

Besides honing the craft, we participate in social media for learning, contribution, and promotion. We’re researching agents and publishing companies. We’re sending query letters and buying business cards. We’re reading favorite authors and submitting our stories.

With all the work it takes to keep up with your writing goals, you’ll want to take advantage of the help that’s available. I found two task management tools, both free and accessed online, that can help you get things done.

Read my post about TaskToy. It was the first online to-do list I found to be fast and user-friendly. At one point it became unreliable (it’s up and running now), so I searched for and found another tool.

Todoist tags itself as “the leading personal task manager  that’s useful, fast, and easy to use. ” The home page shows an impressive list of users: Citi, IBM, Oracle, HP, and Gillette. After seeing those big names, I expected a much more complicated app.

Perhaps that is so for the premium version, but the free version is easy to use. Easy doesn’t mean it’s not powerful, though, and you’ll find the features included are all that you need for a basic to-do list.

The recent news for Todoist users is that the app is now built on HTML5, which basically means it’s super-fast, an improvement that I noticed right away.

My to-do list looks like this for a typical writing life day (which starts in the evening):

Click on the image for a better view. I have daily tasks set to repeat. When I click the box on a completed task, it rolls over to the next scheduled day.

Setting up your list is a snap. Click on the “+” and type in the task. Input the day and time (or multiple days) and your task is set. You can set up “projects” to categorize tasks. I have only one project, “Writing and Social Media,” but you can include any number of projects. You might want one for a query campaign or article submissions, or separate lists for your personal tasks and your day job.

You can change your settings with ease, rearrange tasks with drag-and-drop, and when you miss completing a task, Todoist will remind you the next day by highlighting the task in bright red text.

I have fun with it and treat it like a game. Most nights I complete each task, but sometimes a task has to be ignored, one has to be added, or a time has to be switched. And that’s okay: the tool was created for you and shouldn’t be your master.

One feature missing with the free version of Todoist is reminders. For that you’ll need to pay $29 per year. I prefer to keep things free, so I designated Todoist as my browser’s home page. The first thing I see when I access the internet is a screen that says Get Things Done with Todoist.

With that, I can’t help but feel productive, even before I start.

Give Todoist a try. It’s free, easy, and full of great features. Use it to bring yourself closer to your writing goals.

Note: I’m not an affiliate for Todoist. I just think it’s a great product and want to spread the news. Please see my Disclosure Policy for more information about payments for writing.


10 thoughts on “Todoist: A free online to-do list for writing tasks

  1. I am one of those people who makes lists, then never checks them, lol. Part of this is because I have a little bit of a photographic memory and once I make the list, it’s right there imprinted on my brain. I don’t need to check the paper or digital list again.

    However, during mad rush times of the year, such as Christmas season, I rely hugely on lists to help me out. I think this is because I am out of my routine and doing things I don’t normally do on an average day.

    But I love fun writing tools like this and will have fun checking it out. Thanks!


    1. Photographic memory — that helps! Todoist’s main usefulness for me is that it helps me to keep track of my writing tasks. I don’t use it for anything else, so it’s like a digital writing life assistant.


  2. Thanks for this tool, I checked it out and like it. Great idea. I keep a little to do list but I like the idea that this can be downloaded into my ipad. Now maybe I can finally get organized again! Blessings ~ Patty
    PS I am enjoying both of your blogs.


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