By Glen C. Strathy
These days, the internet puts a wealth of writers resources at your fingertips – articles, ezines, courses, research materials, etc. Gone is the era when you had to spend endless hours in the public library researching a topic or hunt through used book sales for outdated copies of The Writer's Market.
Of course, the offline resources still exist and have continued to grow in number. There are hundreds of books and magazines on writing, local writing groups, libraries, continuing education courses, and workshops you can turn to for advice on honing your craft or selling your work.
In general, it can be of immense help to explore some of the writers resources available, especially when you're just starting out. You can find help on everything from the basics of how to write, to the specifics of writing within your chosen genre, to support groups that can help you improve your manuscript, to the business side of writing (markets, self-promotion, selling your book, networking etc.)
You do have to resist the temptation to explore all these resources before actually writing your book. Learning about writing can be a great excuse for not writing.
The sad truth is that there are so many people who want to become writers that an virtual industry has sprung up to sell them vast numbers of books, courses, and other materials. You can spend a lot of money to hear the same advice over and over from different sources. And in the meantime, your half-finished manuscript gathers dust.
The trick is to strike a balance. Find a few good resources that are credible and that offer you the kind of help you're looking for. Take the help you need to solve the problem in front of you, and leave the rest for when you need it. And never become so obsessed with learning about writing that you stop making time to write.
In the following pages, we will try to
review some of the writers resources we've found personally useful. We
won't try to be comprehensive – that would be impossible. But we hope
they will help you take your next step...
Guest Article: Book Marketing for Authors: 3 Marketing Streams You Should Swim In
JP Jones, author of two books on book marketing, discusses her three most important marketing methods for authors.
Recommended Books On Writing See our recommended books on writing and tell us about your favourites as well.
Writers Associations Find writers associations that can offer you information and support in writing and publishing your book.
The Midwest Book Review This online publication not only reviews a wide range of independent books, it offers many articles on publishing and book promotion and provides links to other sites useful to writers.
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"I've read more than fifty books on writing, writing novels, etc., but your website has the most useful and practical guidance. Now that I understand how a novel is structured, I will rewrite mine, confident that it will be a more interesting novel." - Lloyd Edwards
"Thanks to your "Create a Plot Outline in 8 Easy Steps," I was able to take a story that I simply just fooled around with and went willy nilly all over, into a clearly defined, intriguing battle where two characters fight to keep their relationship intact, and try to find a balance in control of themselves and their lives. Thanks to you, I'm not ashamed of the poor organization of my writing." - Nommanic Ragus
"I am so glad I found your site. It has helped me in so many ways, and has given me more confidence about myself and my work. Thank you for making this valuable resource, for me and my fellow writers. Perhaps you'll hear about me someday...I'll owe it to you." - Ruth, Milton, U.S.A.
"I never knew what to do with all the characters in my head, but since discovering Dramatica I am writing again in my spare time. Thank you for making this available. Yes, it is a bit complex, and it does take time, but I love it because it works." - Colin Shoeman
"I came across your website by chance. It is a plethora of
knowledge, written in a simplistic way to help aspiring writers. I
truly appreciate all of the information you have provided to help me
successfully (relative term) write my novel. Thank you very much!" - Leo T. Rollins
"I can honestly say that this is the first website that is really helpful. You manage to answer complex questions in relatively short articles and with really intelligent answers. Thank you for taking the time to write these articles and sharing them so generously." - Chrystelle Nash
"...had no idea that a simple click would give me such a wealth of valuable information. The site not only offered extremely clear and helpful instructions but was a very enjoyable read as well. The education from your wonderful site has made me a better writer and your words have inspired me to get back to work on my novel. I wish to give you a heartfelt thanks for How to Write a Book Now, sir." -- Mike Chiero