When I first thought of writing How To Improve My Writing Skills – Ilys Review, my need was to find an editor that would improve my writing skills. More importantly, an editor that would give free rein to my creativity and break my habit of editing my work on the go.
The solution is simple, as is the Ilys editor. You are blocked from backspacing, or any means of editing until you have achieved your word count.
Website Name: Ilys
Website URL: www.ilys.com
Owner: Michael Gurevich
The Cost to Join: First 3,000 words free, then $3.99 per month or $39.99 per year.
BoomerAffiliate.com rating: 8/10
What is Ilys
My Ilys review begins with why Ilys, as in “I Love Your Stories”, and pronounced “ill-ees”. Ilys is a writing tool to help with your creativity and prevent “writer’s block”. It is an online browser app so you will need an internet connection to use this tool.
Ilys is not your standard word processor. If you can imagine writing blind-folded, then this is Ilys. Once you have set your goal, your word count, you type. All you can see is the last letter that you typed. When you have finished your task then, and only then, does the editor become enabled.
The two processes of being creative, writing and editing, are two separate tasks. Ilys separates these tasks very well, which allows the writer to focus on the single job of writing. The desire to edit and stop and wonder if your technique is up to scratch or your prose make sense or to correct grammar, is superfluous, as there is nothing you can do about it until you have finished writing and reached your goal.
How Do I Use Ilys
To start using Ilys, once you arrive at the website www.ilys.com, you click on the button “Try Ilys free”, and create a new account. Now that you have your free account, you can give this app a trial run for up to 3,000 words.
To use Ilys, click on the button “Create a new session”. The question is asked, “How many words would you like to write?” For my Ilys review, I chose to write 250 words per day, so this is what I entered each day for each new session. If you’re “Ready to flow?” then click, GO!
You are now locked in a session of typing, tied to your specified word count for that session. Editing and backspacing are not permitted, and all you can do is type ahead. I found this amazingly simple and exhilarating. This method does free you from worrying about what to type and how you type. All you can do is “go-with-the-flow”!
During my Ilys review period, I set myself the task of writing 250 words per day for December 2018 and quickly realised that at 250 words a day, I would use up my 3,000 words “free trial”. With a readjustment of my target to writing just my allotted 3,000 words. I completed this in 14 days. My second day of typing, whatever came to mind, produced the following text, shown in Ilys Trial – part one & part two, below.
During your session, there are several options available.
What’s In An Ilys Session
Once you have started your session and you’re chasing your word count, there are a few available options. You’ll find these in the left margin on the browser version.
Full Screen – Crossed Arrows
The Full-Screen switch is a toggle switch and will toggle between the window and full-screen view.
Dashboard – Home
Click this to abandon your session and return to your Dashboard. It may look as though you have lost your Session, but fear not, refresh the dashboard and as if by magic, your unsaved session is there for you to continue. The save function will not work until you have passed your word count.
Word Count Goal – Flag
This option allows you to view or amend your session word count. Handy if you want to increase your session; double it!
Ninja Mode – Slider Switch
If you want to test yourself, or you do not want anyone looking over your shoulder while you are typing, then switching Ninja Mode ‘On’ will hide the last letter typed and all that is visible is the black screen!
Peek – Eye
If you really must see what you have typed before you have completed your goal, then this is for you. A small back arrow in the left margin sets things back to normal when this is on.
Save – Floppy Disc
If for some reason, you are well into your session, and you are interrupted, then you can save your session before your goal is reached by clicking this option. You can then continue your session when you return.
When you have reached your word-count target, a right-arrow appears in the right margin of the window. Clicking this right-arrow will take you to the editor, where you are now free to edit your creation, which works much like any other editor but without the whistles and bells.
Ilys Trial – Part One
I’m not feeling so well today. I hope it’s just something I’ve eaten, and I’ll be up and about tomorrow my usual self. I won’t let this stop me from sitting down at my desk and thumping out my 250 words.
So far so good with Ilys app. It is working very well, better than I expected, bear in mind, its minimalistic interface. But that’s all it needs, and it does stop me from attempting to correct my mistakes.
Many times I am aware of my mistakes, but now that I know I can’t edit them until I have finished the task in hand, I don’t even attempt to backspace.
So, I guess this is a plus point, and the app is working. One thing I have noticed, if on each day I continue with the same text, the word count continues from where it left off, which is confusing.
An investigation is needed to see if there is a better way of writing a clean-sheet each day to get an accurate word count for the day but all within one document.
As I was testing the ‘Session’ function, I think this is where I have been going wrong. Each time I want to type out another daily dose of say 250 words, it should be as a “Session”.
Grouping Sessions under one heading needs checking out. It’s about time I wrap this up for today and let’s see how I get along tomorrow.
Crickey! That’s 261 words out already at 28 wpm, Goodnight!
It’s my last hour before turning in. My wife is doing some catering this week, so I have been busy in the laundry room, catching up on the ironing. What with the day job, I’m left with only the odd hour here and there to focus on my internet business.
Undeterred, here I sit writing 250 words as part of my Ilys review of the Ilys editor. Amazed at my typing speed – about 28 wpm so that means I should finish in about 10 minutes! Now that I know this, it won’t be too long before I can take the big step of working at home full-time on my online business.
I am working towards that day. Can I do it by the end of 2019? We shall see. It is strange using an editor where I cannot look up to check what I have written. I have no interest in the quality of what I have typed as I cannot see it! It must be hellish for touch typists.
Fortunately, I am not one of those. I spend most of my time looking down at the keyboard, so this app is right up my street. Two hundred words, keep going, Paul. There is still some planning to do for my next article for my website. I will do some research and trawl for some ideas and see where it takes me.
In Free Flow
You are trying hard not to get too hung up about this and let my mind lead the way. Now, this is the fun part. Trust in yourself. Have you ever had the experience of forgetting something or mislaying something? The more you think about it that harder it is to remember.
If you just put it out of your mind and let your subconscious do the work then within the hour, you’ll get that Aha, moment and the answer presents itself. Our subconscious mind knows more than we give it credit.
Awesome! 320 words @ 40 wpm. So, today’s exercise took about 8 minutes, plus a further 5 minutes post-editing and another 5 minutes with the addendum. Job’s done in under 20 minutes!
From the Ilys Dashboard, you can start a new session and view all your “Stories”. Each Session that you create appends to a “Story”. You have the choice to save your session to an existing or new “Story”.
You will also be able to view a clickable list of all your “Stories”.
Below this is a simple rolling 30-day Performance Chart showing your daily word-count.
A useful feature is a link called Recent Autosaves. Click on this, and another page opens to show all the recent autosave from your sessions. If you inadvertently deleted or ‘lost’ your Session, then you may well find it here! It is not meant as a replacement for manual saves, but it is nice to have, just in case.
If you have lost your session and you do find it in the Recent Autosaves, then great! There is a Save to Story option, which will permanently save that session in your designated story.
You can earn credits by referring Ilys to other people. More on this later.
Also on this page are the general Terms of Service, Help and Contact Us links, if you need them.
Ilys Trial – Part Two
The beauty of this app is the fact that the only thing you have to focus on is your writing. The is no room for distractions and procrastination. It ties in beautifully with the Pomodoro technique.
If my word count is 250 words in ten minutes, then I should be able to write 500 words in twenty minutes or one Pomodoro! I look forward to upping my word count to 500. Maybe next week.
During a break from my Ilys Review, I read the terms in a little more detail this evening, and I misread the initial impression that I got, in that I thought my trial was 30 days. No, it is 3,000 words.
As I am already well over 1,000 words, I will most likely exhaust my ‘trial’ sometime next week. But, I think I will subscribe anyway. I am growing to like this app, and at $2.99 per month or $39.99 per year, I think it is well worth it.
I’m still feeling the effects of my cold. I’m home from the day JOB and finished helping my wife Jip with a catering job. The boys have eaten, and I have a couple of hours for my time.
I don’t think I can miss my short sessions of writing 250 words, which I enjoy, and I look forward to it too. I think this will become a long term habit and it does give me great pleasure. Writing this Ilys Review has been a pleasure.
So there we have it for today. I have reached my target, and I’m off to take Jip to do some late night shopping. I’ll be back to some more writing later this evening.
I’m nearly at the end of my 3,000-word free trial. So, this will be my summing up. I found the app easy to use. My concentration was on typing 250 words a day. I have not used it to improve my typing, and I think there are better apps out there to accomplish that.
It was the intention to break me of editing as I type, and consequently, slowing down my typing speed and becoming less productive. My typing speed has improved from 28 to 40 wpm. A good thing if I embark on a new path of SEO Content Writing.
The Pros are that this app is easy to use. It is excellent for typing in public without the fear of someone overlooking your work. It also serves its purpose of preventing editing on the go and allowing your creative juices flow.
The Cons are that it is only a browser app and therefore needs an internet connection to be of use. It may be in the future some improvements will be made to permit offline editing and saving locally. Being able to run without an internet connection would be a great boon.
No update yesterday but I have almost come to the end of my free trial. I inadvertently knocked my mouse at the end of my last session, and it appeared that I had lost my work. So, I just wrapped it up for the day and went to bed.
I turned on my Mac this evening and found yesterday’s work was still in my browser waiting for me to save. Once it is saved safely, and I can now wind things up. I am almost at the end of the 3000-word marathon.
In summary, I think the only short-coming to this app is the fact that it requires an internet connection to be able to use it. I hope the developers of this app are considering a standalone app, i.e. one that can be used offline, without an internet connection. If they can do this, then I’ll give them 8/10, but for now, I can only deliver a 7/10.
I see that I have passed today’s 250 words, and I am into my last 100 words before my free trial ends. Would I subscribe to this service? Yes, I would, and I have! My typing is more flowing and no more editing. I would recommend that you do take out a trial and give it a test run. You may well like it. My free trial has now ended, so my Ilys review of this app has come to an end.
During this, Ilys Review, I found the browser app is simple to use and does the job. Boomer Affiliate recommends this tool if you have the habit of interrupting your work to edit as you move along. By using this app, your writing habit will improve, giving rein to your creativity – Let it Flow! After using the Ilys editor; I am in no doubt that I will improve my writing skills.
Following my Ilys review, I believe the subscription cost is very fair and well worth the benefits to you. You can sign up for a free trial at www.ilys.com. There is an affiliate scheme though it is quite meagre at half the first subscription. With the monthly subscription at $3.99 and the annual $39.99, the referral credit would only be $1.99 or $19.99. Hopefully, anyone subscribing using your referral link selects the Annual option!
The downside is that it is all in the cloud. Without an internet connection, you cannot use this tool – more on this in the next section.
I have spoken to the creator of Ilys – Michael Gurevich – and he tells me that there is a desktop version available for paid-up subscribers. This desktop app sounds like a beta version, and I look forward to taking it for a test run. Mike also told me that a mobile app is in the offing.
If Ilys carries over the simplicity of the browser version to the desktop and mobile apps, then I think they will be on to a winner! Now that I know this, Boomer Affiliate is happy to give this writing tool an 8/10!
Read about my first look at Ilys Flower, the desktop version of this brilliant editor, here!