Writing is pretty darn simple.
Think about it. You don’t need any tools to write. You don’t have to learn a skill or buy fancy equipment or drive anywhere to do it. All you need is a pencil, paper, and your own imagination.
Sometimes, though, writing tools are awesome – and I’m not talking physical things like those fancy erasers or tablet computers. Knowledge is the name of the game when it comes to creating, and every now and again it’s nice to have some outside help. There are plenty of websites to help with this, and I’m going to show you a few of my personal favorites!
my write club
My Write Club is an awesome site for writers of all stages! You can make 100% customizable goals for writing, from outlining to editing, and track them from beginning to end. The best part about the website, though, are its WORD SPRINT features.
If you aren’t cultured in the world of word sprints, let me educate you. A word sprint is a segment of time where you set about 20 minutes and just write, nonstop. That’s right, perfectionists: no rereading, editing, or hesitating. Just go for it, don’t stop, and celebrate when you’re done.
My Write Cub has its own word sprint server, where you can compete against other writers in a race to get the most words. While it might seem stressful (and believe me, I’m a little anxious just thinking about it,) it’s entertaining to see how many stars you can get in the allotted time. You can also set up private sprints with friends! I 10/10 recommend this product.
Names are a huge matter of discussion in writing communities. Like, how on earth are you supposed to come up with a memorable name that isn’t overused and simultaneously isn’t too obscure? And then having to take the sounds and spelling of names into consideration… Yeah, names are complicated.*
Thankfully there’s this site called Nameberry that is really neat in finding names that fit your characters. Users can create name lists, so you can find names that sound like your character. Say, if you wanted to name a prince, you could find a list with names that resonate with superiority. Nameberrry makes name-finding actually fun and not tear-your-hair-out stressful.
*spoiler alert: i’m going to write a post about this in the future 👍
Do you ever have trouble imagining your setting when your three little siblings are shouting in the background and someone’s got the TV volume up waaaay too high? WELL DO WE HAVE A SITE FOR YOU. Ambient-mixer is a super, sUPeR cool website that lets you make free audio tracks of… well, whatever you want! There are literally endless combinations you can make of absolutely any place on earth or space or whatever!
I know you’re sick of hearing about NaNo, but hear me out. Not only is this the birthplace of thousands of novels, it’s also a fantastic place to find like-minded people and ask questions on the forums! There are experienced writers who are willing to help out in every way they can, plus peers to review your work or help home your skills.
Not to mention, Nano also provides goal trackers and sprint timers, along with plenty of writing articles. So even if you’re not a NaNo-er, the site is a great place to be!
Yay for Google Docs! This may seem like an elementary site to include, but to 13-year-old Abby, it was the most revolutionary creation on the planet. I used to send emails back and forth from my computer to my iPad, or to people I collaborated with. It added to my already plentiful email collection, and wasn’t too easy to track, either. Google, however, has made it amazingly easy to share documents. As a bonus, it was a LIFESAVER in my first college class, so if you haven’t tried it for writing purposes yet, at least try it for the school simplicity.
I only came across this site in the research for this post, but I’m so glad I found it. Underlined is basically a lifestyle site for teen writers with articles, quizzes, reading recommendations, and writing fun! Like, who doesn’t want to know how their coffee order affects what book they’ll pick up next? While it’s not so helpful while you’re writing (it might be distracting) it definitely puts you in the mood to get reading in writing.
I actually have eight tabs open right now. I have to know the eight reading dad jokes and I have to know them nOW.
Trello is, in my opinion, one of the best sites… ever. It’s a list site but supercharged. I’ve used it for countless things: shopping lists, packing lists, blogging scheduling, bucketlisting, school, and pretty much everything you can imagine. I like lists.
But I’ve also used it for plotting stories, specifically plotting the earliest outline and ASDFFGJK IM IN LOVE. I can make notes, tag cards, and do pretty much anything I want through this site. It’s the classic method of using index cards, but easier to adjust and take on the go!
How was I NOT going to include YDubs? The Young Writer’s Workshop was my absolute, 100% biggest inspiration to take this blog from a hobby to a job. It’s where I learned everything I know and I lovelovelove it so much!
YWW provides not only writing assist videos from initial writing to publishing but is also a very hands-on experience close with instructors and fellow students. I recommend this SO MUCH. Whether you’re a casual writer or an author hopeful, Ydubs is an incredible resource and I wouldn’t trade my time there for the world.
YEP IM PULLING OUT MY MAIN MAN MR THESAURUS. Although it’s another obvious one (and I’ve already professed my undying love for the thesaurus), it’s so nice to have while writing that I had to include it again! My favorite use for this site isn’t so much to find synonyms, but for those moments when I can’t quite find the word I’m looking for. You know, when there’s a word at the tip of your tongue you can’t quite think of? Yeah, Thesaurus.com also gives words with similar meanings. No more banging your head into the keyboard!
The internet is known for being a distraction to writers everywhere, but I’m so glad to see how it’s also influencing rising authors to be better and have more inspiration. Have fun exploring these sites and get a little writing in!
What about you? Tell me about your favorite resources to use while writing. Do you enjoy using any of the sites I’ve mentioned? Are you going to go check them out?? (pst, go try trello, it’s the literal best place on the internet… besides, you know, here 😉 ) Comment below!