Writing resources

A friend was asking me recently about submitting stories for publication. I pointed him towards one of the resources I use most, but it occured to me afterwards that I could have been a whole lot more helpful. So for the Northman, and for anybody else who might want them, here are some of the resources that I’ve found most useful as a writer:

Writing excuses – A podcast discussing tools and techniques for writers. Four published authors share their skills and experience, and provide writing prompts in case you need some inspiration. Only fifteen minutes a week, but I’ve learned a heck of a lot from it.

Duotrope – An online database of short story markets that you can also use to keep track of your submissions. Vital for me in identifying appropriate places to send stories and judging when to chase up responses.

Write or Die – The program for anyone who has trouble pushing themselves to stop prevaricating and keep writing. Basically a word processor that tells you off if you pause to long. Cheap to buy, and a great motivator. Nothing drives me on like that glowing red screen.

Scrivener – A program that helps you organise your story notes, plans, research and chunks of writing. It makes it easy to link the plan and the story together, to find the part of your manuscript you’re working on, and to rearrange scenes when you realise you’ve gone wrong. It’s the only thing I’m recommending here that has a substantial cost, and I think it’s well worth it. I use it for pretty much anything I write now, not just stories. I plan in Scrivener, draft chunks of text in Write or Die and then copying them into Scrivener to compile and edit.