I cannot lie; sometimes the internet is a big distraction when I write. Sometimes I disconnect my computer from the Wi-Fi signal so I won’t have the urge to check Facebook if I hit a rough spot in my story. On the other hand, the internet is filled with countless resources for writers. Here’s three sites I’ve found to be especially helpful.
I have a lot of fall back words – those boring, vague and cliché things I type when I’m feeling lazy or just unimaginative. Some of my apparent favorite words are lame things like very, few, rather, and quite. With this site, you can create word clouds based on the most common words in your manuscript. This is extremely helpful, since it is much easier to strengthen your word choices once you know what your weak ones are. Go to the website, click create, paste in the text of your story, and discover your fall back words.
Ever written a story set in a country where you’ve never gone? Wondering if what you wrote matches the real life culture of the location? Culture Crossing will provide you with information on many cultural issues specific to that country. This site is not made specifically for writers, but it offers fascinating information that will help you get the details right.
Pinterest. I saved my favorite for last. First, let me start by saying that Pinterest should be used in moderation. No using it for when you are just too lazy to write. Use it for occasional inspiration. Seriously, there is real danger in becoming a Pinterest addict.
Pinterest has a variety of already compiled boards of writing prompts. My favorite is Amanda Patterson’s Writing Prompt board. Also, Pinterest is great for finding pictures of potential characters, settings and objects that spark something in your mind. There are boards out there for everything. For example, there’s a board with currently over 700 pins of brunette characters. What if there’s a story idea waiting for you there? For a previous story, Ghost Town, my character Talia and her ensuing story was inspired from one picture on Pinterest. Read the full story and see the pin that inspired it.
Do you see how there can be countless stories waiting to be told?
What online resources do you use?