8 Great Writing Websites – What Are Your Favorites? Plus, a Prompt


As WD’s Jane Friedman detailed on her blog last week, the latest issue of the magazine features our annual Top 101 Websites for Writers list. Following Jane’s picks, on this WD Mag Wednesday here are 8 digital venues (and their descriptions from the magazine) where I tend to procrastinate best.

What are your favorite hubs? Post them in the comments section below, and they’ll be nominated for the 101 list next year.

* * *


Six-Word Memoirs

“The tagline: ‘Everyone has a story. Can you tell yours in six words?’ ” (Awesomely addictive.)

Writer Beware Blog  

“Every industry needs a watchdog, and this has long been one of publishing’s most vigilant.” (Awesomely useful.)

Funds for Writers          
“This great source of grants, fellowships, contests, awards and markets also offers your pick of three free newsletters, including one dedicated to kids who want to write.”

Book Cover Archive  
“Scope out the best in cover design. Especially useful for self-publishing authors making decisions about their own cover packages.” (Literary visual euphoria.)

MediaBistro               

“If you’re a freelance writer, this is one of the finest resources at your disposal for industry news, jobs, feature articles, blogs and more.” (GalleyCat, too.)

Query Shark      
“Agent Janet Reid critiques fiction queries (for free), dishing out honest—though sometimes brutal—advice and edits.”

The Intern  
“An honest, humorous, wise look at the good, bad and ugly sides of publishing from someone who knows the muck and mire well: an intern.”

LibraryThing     


“A network for book lovers to catalog and review what’s on their shelves, and also the source of the recurring You Are What You Read feature in InkWell (spotlighting the personal libraries of literary greats).” (Here’s to the aesthetic perfection of seeing your entire library in book-cover mosaic form.)

* * *

WEDNESDAY WRITING PROMPT: Forging Ahead
Feel

free to take the following prompt home or post your
response (500
words or fewer, funny, sad or stirring) in the Comments section below.
By posting, you’ll be automatically entered in our
occasional around-the-office swag drawings (next one: next week).
If you’re having trouble with the
captcha code sticking, e-mail it to me at
writersdigest@fwmedia.com, with “Promptly” in the subject line, and I’ll
make sure it gets up.

You didn’t think you ever would—or that it was even possible—but you do it. You forge it.

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5 thoughts on “8 Great Writing Websites – What Are Your Favorites? Plus, a Prompt

  1. zhuzhu

    Marvin Gaye was playing on the radio,
    and the piquant smell of marijuana hung in the smoky air. Where
    the money came from or what he was doing with it I never knew.
    We shared many secrets, but I was not privy to this one. We
    allowed certain indiscretions. He looked up at me with the
    sleepy, foolish grin of one stoned and said, "Little darlin,
    life can be cruel. You must do what is necessary to survive.
    All is fair as long as you are not creating chaos in the
    world." He often said such things. He is a staunch

    <strong>thomas sabo charm armb?nder</strong>
    believer that morality is an opinion of the observer.

  2. Deborah Yates

    My shaking hand held the ink pen poised above the line of
    signature. I can hear the swoosh-pop of a ventilator from an
    adjoining room as it pumps life into my fathers lungs. Don’t do
    this, it seemed to say. Don’t let greed obscure the truth.
    Forging a legal document has consequences. Like prison. Forging
    the signature of a dyeing mans last will and testament involves
    a lesson in ethics you may not be prepared for. I let the pen
    slip from my fingers. I don’t know what I am doing. Am I really
    the type of woman to commit such an act?

    Once, while in my late teens, I was helping my mother with
    spring cleaning by taking boxes to the garage, and my father
    was there, bent over his work bench, banding a stack of one
    hundred dollar bills. Marvin Gaye was playing on the radio,
    and the piquant smell of marijuana hung in the smoky air. Where
    the money came from or what he was doing with it I never knew.
    We shared many secrets, but I was not privy to this one. We
    allowed certain indiscretions. He looked up at me with the
    sleepy, foolish grin of one stoned and said, "Little darlin,
    life can be cruel. You must do what is necessary to survive.
    All is fair as long as you are not creating chaos in the
    world." He often said such things. He is a staunch
    believer that morality is an opinion of the observer.

    After finding the will I became obsessed as to why he
    bequeathed everything he owns to St. James Christian Church.
    My father is not Christian nor does he agree with organized
    religion. He considers himself an orthodox-ed spiritualist,
    a pun he finds amusing. I can find no rationalization for his
    action.

    I pick up the ink pen. My heartbeat is thumping in my ears as I
    put the ball of the pen on the paper, and sign my fathers name.
    The noise in my head quiets as I attain composure. I am the
    sort of woman to sneer at conceptual morality after all. I am
    my fathers daughter.

  3. Mark James

    My favorite writing site? That’s a tough one. I don’t know if this counts, but I really like the Teaching Company. I buy some lectures, but sometimes just going through the website and reading course descriptions gets me unstuck when I’m working on a project. Wow. Did I just pass the nerd test or what?

    “Your skills of persuasion are quite remarkable,” Lennie said, “but not even you could manage getting a dead man’s signature.”

    “What do you want? A confession?” I said.

    Lennie was a fat man and I don’t mean a little soft around the edges; I mean his face was round like the moon and his eyes were like marbles stuck in dough. He leaned back in his chair, ran his fingers over the contract I’d laid on his desk. “Time elapsed?” he said.

    With contract DNA that was critical; the fresher the body, the better the imprint. “Two hours.”

    He played it cool, pretended the signature on the contract’s bottom line wasn’t worth ten times more than a virgin gold mine. “Excellent work. When did he sign?”

    “What difference does it make?” I said.

    The picture on the wall behind Lennie showed a piano, with black and white keys floating around, like someone had tossed a grenade through the frame. “Of course, you have validation?” he said.

    If I wasn’t facing a mandatory hundred year sentence in Deep Freeze, maybe Lennie’s question wouldn’t have made me feel like spreading his guts all over his office, kind of like the piano keys in the picture. “If it wasn’t validated I’d be sucking dry ice. Clock’s ticking, Lennie. In or out?”

    He fingered the contract, slid it across his mahogany desk toward me. “As you have so eloquently put it, the fact that you’re here is quite likely proof that this transaction is somehow validated but,” he flicked the edge of the paper, sent it flying through the air toward me, “without proof, it’s only paper with wet ink on the bottom line.”

    I pulled a digital holo saver from my pocket, flicked it on. A man about three inches high walked across Lennie’s desk toward him, sat at a low table, and said, “I Victor L. Compton do hereby bequeath my DNA signature rights to Alaine Kingsley.”

    Lennie’s eyes glittered. I’m not kidding. They looked like diamonds caught in a strobe light. “No alterations,” he said. “Ingenious. My software didn’t so much as twitch.”

    Most people, after I work with them for a while, they start understanding things. It took me nearly five months of starving Victor and working with him, persuading him every night before he showed me how to write like him. After that, it was easy to get him to do the recording. I promised I’d let him die. “Tick tock,” I said.

    “Ten million,” Lennie said.

    “Fifty, relocation, and my heart scan tied to yours,” I said. “Or no deal.”

    I watched him think about it. He’d have to maintain my new identity, make sure nothing happened to me, because the second my heart stopped beating, so would his.

    “Outrageous,” he said.

    I got halfway to the door before he broke.

    “All right. Fifty and I’ll arrange the heart linkage.”

    I didn’t turn around.

    “And transport to anywhere on the planet,” he said.

    #

    Alaska’s cold, but it’s quiet, the way I like it. As unbelievable as it feels, I got away with it. Scientists isolated the gene that controls intelligence years ago. And now Lennie owned the DNA of the smartest man in the world. I’ve heard he’s selling off pieces of Victor starting at a quarter million a pop.

    I should have asked for more.

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