Writefull is a light-weight app that uses data from Google Books (5+ million books) and the Web to improve your writing, It compares small sections of your text to a large data set of writing found online and in Google Books. All you need to do is select a chunk of your text in your browser or text editing software, activate the Writefull popover, and choose one of its five options:
1) check the number of results (how often the chunk appears in Google Books or the Web);
2) compare the number of results (if your selected chunk appears more or less frequently than suggestions from online);
3) see examples in context (display several examples of how your selected chunk is used in different texts);
4) find words in context (see which words are used most often in your context, which you specify in your text by a star. For example, 'research should * this issue' will give you a list with 'research should address this issue', 'research should explore this issue', 'research should examine this issue', etc.);
5) find synonyms in context (see which synonyms of a word are used most often in your context, with you specifying the word you want synonyms for by two stars. For example: 'a *difficult* situation' will suggest 'an awkward situation', 'a serious situation', 'an embarrassing situation', etc).
The app works with a small popover which mean you can activate it from whatever writing tool you're using. No need to change windows - no interruption of your workflow.
N.B. Writefull 2.0 will be launching soon and will eliminate the need to purchase queries in the Web version. The $5 membership fee still applies.