Favorite Writer Resources and Tools
Blogger: Mary Keeley
The amount of research, details, and terms to manage can become daunting and consuming. Along the writing journey, authors stumble upon resource tools they especially like and go back to again and again. I’m going to list some examples of perhaps little known but interesting tools I’ve discovered that may save you time and make your writing time a little more pleasant and efficient.
My hope is that you’ll join the conversation by sharing your favorites and all of you will come away with new resources to add to your writer toolbox. To get you started, here are a few I’ve found:
Grammarly. This resource touts itself as an automated proofreader and grammar coach. You can also get help with word choice. At a time when publishers are looking for near perfect manuscripts at submission, this tool and others like it will become automatic favorites.
Citation Machine. Answer a few questions and this tool formats everything for your bibliographies. Imagine how much time this will save.
Muse Creations. This website offers free access to thousands of character names. One source mentioned 40,000 names. A newer version quotes 60,000.
Library Insider. I’m sure many of you are familiar with this resource, but it’s worth mentioning again. This resource helps authors market their books to libraries. Better than other library resources, the database of library contacts is updated monthly, and it offers many additional benefits to help you with your strategy and presentation.
Videojug. Here you can get information and details about everyday life activities. Let’s say your character is pruning her rose bush, or your hero came to the rescue to repair her car, you can find those little how-to details on this site. It isn’t a source you could use for historicals, however. Does someone know an equivalent online source for historical information?
Surflater for PC and Notebook for Mac. These software packages help authors organize Internet research, and they work with most browsers.
- Platform University is platform mogul Michael Hyatt’s new venture. For $25 per month you can everything Michael has learned to grown his multi-faceted platform.
Refer to Janet Grant’s January 15, 2013 blog to learn more about the next two resources.
- Google Analytics measures your social media efforts to drive people to your website.
- Klout scores your influence based on your social media activity.
Today I was corresponding with a client about an idea for a future project. The thing is, it will require a lot of research in the US. The client lives in the UK. If the project is a go, a research trip to the States is in order. Besides government websites, what online resources for the history of a particular area would you recommend?
OK, let’s hear about your favorite resources for any area of the writing life.