I’m a huge fan of The Great Courses®. Whether you’re doing research on ancient Mesopotamia, deepening your knowledge of your genre, or you want to improve your craft, TGC has options for you. I’ve taken at least a dozen courses! Here are a few I can recommend for writers:
Building Great Sentences: Exploring the Writer’s Craft, by Professor Brooks Landon
English Grammar Boot Camp, by Professor Anne Curzan
Great Utopian and Dystopian Works of Literature, by Professor Pamela Bedore
Writing Great Fiction: Storytelling Tips and Techniques, by Professor James Hynes
How to Write Best-Selling Fiction, by Professor James Scott Bell
And that’s just for starters. Check it out, but here’s my pro tip: Don’t pay the list price! TGC regularly offers their courses at steep discounts. Get on their mailing list and wait for their catalog. If you’re paying more than $50 for a course, it’s too much!
MeetUp is a tremendous (and, I believe, underutilized) resource for writers. Whether you want to get feedback on your work in progress, get advice on publishing, or simply put your head down and write in the company of fellow writers; whether your passion is poetry, short-form or long-form fiction, you’ll likely find a MeetUp group you’ll fit into. I belong to several, and I’m the organizer for an online critique group that you can join!
But almost as important, you can find a MeetUp group of subject matter experts to help with your research. Are you a mystery writer? Find a MeetUp for cops! Fantasy? How about that LARP MeetUp? I belong to a Virtual Reality group. Not only have they taught me volumes about VR, but the members have also become some of my most devoted fans!
Amazon provides indie authors with a wealth of resources to publish and promote their work. One free service they provide is the author page, where readers can find all the author’s works, links to their blog posts, and a forum for discussions with the author and each other. Check out my author page here!
Goodreads is another great community for readers and authors. Here you’ll find books by established authors as well as indies. Features include forums for different genres, lists of books by popularity, giveaways, reviews, and much more! You’ll find my works listed on Goodreads, and, if you’re a fan, I would especially appreciate a review!
Hometown Reads is the place to find local authors! You can browse books by authors from dozens of cities, and more are being added every day. Support your local authors – check out the offerings from your community!
Literature & Latte are the makers of Scrivener, the finest writing tool ever conceived. I used Scrivener for my latest project, Shredded, and I love it! Scrivener lets me organize my writing project by section, chapter, scene – whatever makes sense for my work. When I write, I often find a need to change the order of scenes or chapters. Scrivener makes it easy. And each chapter or scene has its own synopsis and notes. Best of all, Scrivener lets me compile my manuscript for a range of different formats – ebook, print, manuscript submission, or chapters in individual Word documents, the way my editor prefers. I recommend the Mac version, but I own the Mac, Windows and iOS versions of Scrivener.
I teach an overview course on how to use Scrivener. You can download my tutorial here.
If you’re a writer, you need to check out Scrivener!