Setup on macOS

This is a brief guide to how you can get novelWriter running on macOS. There are currently no install package of novelWriter for macOS, so it is recommended that you download either the full source or minimal package and extract it to a practical location on your system and run it.

Running from Source

To run novelWriter from source, download the latest source package from the release page on GitHub or the main website, or if you have git running on your computer, you can also clone the repository.

Step 1: Installing Dependencies

These instructions assume you’re using brew, and have Python and pip set up. If not, see the brew docs for help. Main requirements are installed via the requirements file. You also need to install the pyobjc package, so you should run:

pip3 install --user -r requirements.txt
pip3 install --user pyobjc

For spell checking you may also need to install the enchant package. It comes with a lot of default dictionaries.

brew install enchant

With the dependencies in place, you can launch the script directly to run novelWriter.

Step 2: Install Package (Optional)

You can install novelWriter to the correct location for Python packages with:

./ install --user

This requires that the package setuptools is installed on your system. If not, it can be installed with:

pip3 install --user setuptools

This is method of install is equivalent to what the pip installer does. It puts novelWriter in the location on your system where Python packages are usually kept. This is not really the best suited location for a GUI application like novelWriter, so you may instead copy the entire source to a suiteable location yourself.

After this, you should be able to launch novelWriter by running novelWriter in a command line window.


Right now there isn’t a better integration with macOS available. Contributions from someone more familiar with macOS would be very much appreciated.