This thread should have something for most writers - for those still struggling to quite grasp the English language, to those who have been writing for years.
I find these sites with a combination of youtube, tumblr, wattpad, articles, and what is recommended to me. Feel free to make recommendations, I might add them to the list.
-it’s in English or have an English option
-it seems reliable
-it is free or it has a free option
Point out if something is off about any of the sites, I can’t keep track of everything. I’ll try to keep it updated and add something new every so often.
Are you a novice struggling to figure out where to start?
Stick around, on the end of this post I’ll compose a small list of articles covering the basics.
Cold Turkey Writer - Blocks out every distracting thing on your computer until a certain time has passed or you’ve typed a certain number of words.
Hemingway Editor - Catches adverbs, passive voice, and sentences that are too complicated.
Blindwrite - Blurs out your writing for a certain amount of time.
Write Or Die - Incentivises writing by deleting text if you pause for a too long.
ProWritingAid - Grammar and quality checker.
Descriptionari - This site is an archive of descriptions.
Seven Sanctum - Generators for names, personality, abilities, and more.
Motive generator - Offers prompts to give your character’s purpose.
TV tropes - A classic. Has a large archive of tropes you may get inspiration from.
Powerlisting - An archive of magical powers used in media.
General Information and research
Nownovel Blog - Articles on everything, from how to develop a character to determining a genre.
The Grinder - ressources leaning more towards short stories and poetry.
Lords and ladies - Basic European history.
Pantheon - Online encyclopedia on folklore and mythology.
Psychwriter - Combines writing and psychology.
Positive writer - Articles on remaining positive as a writer.
Dialect archive - Recordings of different accents and dialects from all around the globe.
Pexels - Royalty free images.
Unsplash - More royalty free images.
Canva - Easy cover editor that has a wattpad sized format. Easy to use and convenient when adding text.
Words without borders - focuses on translation and international literature
Grammar Girl - explains language and usage in an entertaining manner at her blog.
The Chicago Manual of Style - is the style guide used by most of the book publishing industry.
Daily Writing Tips - looks at topics like usage, spelling, vocabulary and more.
Grammar Book - has usage rules, quizzes and more.
Word Hippo - generates word origins, synonyms, antonyms, translations, tenses, rhyming words, various parts of speech, names and more.
Social media specific
The big thread on how to get reads - A guide on how you might achieve success on wattpad.
Inkarnate - Simple map creator.
Agentyquery - A free searchable database of literary agents, publishers, and other useful stuff for those looking to publish.
Trello - Helps you keep organized.
Namehunter - Type in names for inspiration, and it’ll give you similar ones.
City generator - Generates a random map for urban developments.
Azgaar - Map generator
Writing excuses - podcast about writing
Components of tension and suspense
Words for describing hair
Ways to end your novel
Sliding Scale for Core Dialogue Traits
Questions for World Building
More often than not I’ll crack into a sprawling fantasy series and, while I appreciate the luscious descriptions of furniture, landscapes, and clothing, all I’m focused on is that I don’t actually know how this world works . I only know what it looks like.
Including some functionality to your universe can add to immersion and give your reader a strong foundation on which to build their mental model of your universe.
You certainly don’t need to use all of these questions! In fact, I recommend against that, as all of these certainly won’t make it into your final draft. I personally find that starting my worldbuilding off with 5 to 10 functional questions helps pave the way for glittery and elaborate aesthetic development later on.
How is the healthcare funded in your world?
How does healthcare functionally differ between the wealthy and the poor? (i.e. can only the wealthy go to hospitals? do poor families often have to rely on back-alley procedures?)
Where are health centers (i.e. hospitals, small clinics, etc.) organized in your cities?
- Does it differ in smaller towns?
- How does this affect people’s ability to get healthcare?
Is healthcare magical, and if it is, how does that affect the healthcare system?
- If healing is instantaneous, how does that affect people’s views on injury, illness, and chronic ailments?
If you have both magical and physical healthcare, which one is deemed superior and how does that affect society?
What illnesses are common in your world?
- How does this affect daily life?
What do the people in your world think illnesses are?
- Is it a miasma theory?
- Humor theory?
- Do they know about biological viruses and bacteria?
- How does this affect healthcare?
How do people get water?
- Is the water sanitary and if not, how do they sanitize it?
How does agriculture work?
- Is it large corporations or individual farms?
- What sort of agricultural technology exists in your world and how does it affect food production?
Are farmers wealthy or poor?
What sort of natural resources does your world/country(ies) have and how are they obtained?
- How does this affect the average wealth of the country?
- How does this wealth affect the culture?
What livestock or beasts of burden are most valued? Least valued? Why?
What is considered a luxury good vs. a regular good?
What forms of transportation does your world have?
- What classes use what forms of transportation?
- How far has the average citizen traveled, given your transportation limitations?
Which cities are the most accessible and which are the least? Why?
How do popular transportation methods change how cities/towns are laid out?
Does your world have public transportation? What is it?
Is there a coming-of-age aspect to travel?
Describe your world’s postal system or whatever equivalent there is.
- Who pays for it?
- How reliable is it?
- Are there emergency methods for transporting information?
How does your world keep time (i.e. watches, sundials, water clock, etc.)?
Does your world have a currency system, barter system, or something else?
If you have multiple countries, do different currencies have different values across said countries?
- How does this affect travel?
Do you have banks in your world and if so, how are they run?
- Who owns the banks? Government? Wealthy? How does this affect the economy and/or class system?
How does credit operate in your universe?
Does your world operate more on big corporations or small business? Something in between?
How are workers/labourers treated in your world?
- Are there workers unions and if so, what are common views on unions?
Describe your tax system. If you don’t have a tax system, explain why and how your world is affected by that.
Can certain social classes not own property, certain livestock, certain businesses, etc.? Why?
How are business records kept? Are business records kept?
If your world has technology, does your world prioritize developing entertainment tech, communications tech, transportation tech or something else entirely?
- What does this say about your world?
- How does this affect your economy?
To the closest approximation, what type of government does your world have?
How are rulers/presidents/nobles put in place?
How much power does an individual ruler have?
Is there a veto process?
If you have multiple countries, do they have different types of rulers?
Describe any large-scale alliances (i.e. countries, factions, etc.) that are present in your world.
- How did they come about and how are they maintained?
- Are they strained or peaceful?
- How does it affect the greater politics of your world?
Describe how wars are fought both internationally and nationally.
- Do methods of war differ between countries/races?
- What about philosophies about war?
If there is a military, what is its hierarchy structure?
- How does the military recruit?
- Is the military looked upon favourably in your society?
What weapons are used by each country/type of people during warfare, and how does that affect war strategies?
Describe the sentencing system of your world.
- Is your accused innocent until proven guilty, or guilty until proven innocent?
How are lawbreakers punished?
- If you have prisons, describe how they are organized and run, and who owns them.
- Does differing ownership change how the prisons operate?
What are the major ways in which laws between countries vary?
- Do laws between cities vary? If so, how and why?
How does citizenship work in your world? What rights and privileges do citizens have that others do not?
- Can certain classes or races not become citizens?
Are there certain taboo subjects or opinions that artist/authors/musicians are not allowed to depict (i.e. portraying the official religion in a negative light, explicit sexual material, etc.)? What does this say about your society?
- How do people get around these censorship laws?
What is the official hierarchy of duty in your world? (i.e. is family the most important, or patriotism? What about clan?)
How many languages are there in your world, and how many languages share a common origin?
- How many people are multilingual?
- Which language is the most common?
- How is multilingualism viewed?
- How are different languages viewed? (i.e. is one language ugly/barbaric while another is romantic and sensual?)
Writing a main character/characters
Tips on how you should write
Ten steps to writing a novel
POV, genre, and other technical stuff
The difference between POV
I haven’t read all these articles in detail, feel free to point out if there’s crappy advice.