Being a writer is a very difficult thing. Showing your work to other people and allowing them to critique it is a very intimate and let’s be honest, stressful, experience. In addition to this, once you’ve gotten your poem, short story, or novel perfect, finding an agent who will help you get published is borderline impossible.
Luckily, our generation has the internet which has tons of great websites for writers to read each other’s work, workshop their own pieces, and even find agents.
Here are five of the BEST (free) websites that the internet offers to aspiring writers.
With Figment, you can share all writing from poems to full length novels. The website gives your fellow authors the option to “heart” your work. As time goes by you collect these hearts and those top pieces end up on the front page which is terrific publicity for any writer. Most everyone on Figment is extremely professional and offer very constructive criticism. Figment also has discussion boards so that users can ask for suggestions, collaborate with other writers, and advertise their work.
Okay, so fan fiction in general gets a bad rap considering most people associate it with crazy fangirls writing erotic scenes between them and Edward Cullen. However, while this is the case sometimes, most fan fiction is pretty interesting to read. FanFiction, the website, has millions of fandoms that writers can choose to write about. Believe it or not, diving deeper into someone else’s story is a great way to defeat chronic writer’s block. Since you already know the characters, it’s very easy to get straight to writing what you want to write. Another bonus is the fact that every time someone “Favorites” or “Subscribes” to your story or your account, it is a HUGE ego boost. Even if it’s “just” fan fiction.
3) Agent Query
Agent Query is more or less a searchable database for agents. Anyone who is serious about writing knows that having an agent is the best way to find a credible publisher. The website also advertises when events such as writing conferences are coming up so that you can make as many connections in the literary world as possible.
For the writer with the million dollar idea, but who lacks motivation, this one’s for you. Every year, November is “National Novel Writing Month”. Simply make an account, create your story, and get to writing. The goal is to have at least a 50,000 word draft by the end of November. Along the way, the website tracks your progress, offers inspiration, and allows you to converse with fellow writers. When November is over, don’t be sad, because a newer feature on the website is “Camp NaNoWriMo,” which is a similar concept, except it takes place over the course of the summer.
Writer’s Digest is a highly valuable resource. Not only do they put out books and an amazing magazine, their website also contains the latest writing tips and information about competitions.
As a writer, any chance you have to get your work out there, you should take advantage of. Also, remember that Whim is accepting poetry and short story submissions so take the opportunity to show off your writing chops with your fellow Highlanders!