Friday, January 3, 2014

My Top 12 Fantastic Writer Resources

Great news! I’ve updated my annual list from 10 to 12 resources. So whether you’re an aspiring Christian writer who longs to be published—or a published writer who wants more opportunity—you’ll find something in the list to help you.

Skills and talent are important, but it’s also imperative to be educated in the publishing market. This includes knowing current acceptable grammar usage, how to write queries, and subject trends. As important is knowing where to submit your work, whether you’re seeking to build writing credits or for pay. If you don’t have the means to attend writers’ conferences, these resources are a great way to become more educated to help achieve your publishing goals. We all want to be published, right?

The following comprehensive list covers all of the above and then some.

Story Sensei - If you’re looking for a Christian writer with a heart for aspiring writers, acclaimed Christian writer Camy Tang would rank high in that group. Her website offers an extensive list of articles on every writing subject imaginable. She also offers an array of paid services including worksheets and coaching.

The Write Conversation - Are query letters confusing? Difficult? Make you want to pull your hair out or throw something against a wall? You’re not alone. Most published writers have been in your shoes. Here’s a great article (and writer’s website) written by Edie Melson, editor and writer with hundreds of articles and books to her credit. You’ll find many writing topics in her website’s archives.

Open Submissions - So you want to be published and don’t know where to look. How about a list of 200+ Christian magazines and book publishers with open submissions? This list should keep you busy for a while. 

Vonda Skelton - This website is filled with encouragement, writing opportunities, and writing support services such as critiques. Vonda’s heart for helping others shines through all aspects of her ministry.

Self-Editing For Fiction Writers: How To Edit Yourself Into Print - If you can only afford a few writing books, this should be at the top of your list. Many fundamental writing errors can be eliminated by utilizing the concepts outlined in this book.

Pelican Book Group Blog - There’s nothing better than advice directly from the staff of a publishing house. This blog is staff written and posts in-depth self-editing tips through their weekly “Tactical Tuesdays” posts. 

Characteristics Of A Hero - Most fiction storylines involve a hero and/or heroine. They should possess characteristics like bravery and courage but also quiet characteristics like humility and selflessness. They also need a flaw. It’s imperative that you nail these characteristics for your hero. Many can also be applied to the heroine. This is a good website to get you thinking about how to flesh out your characters.

Editorial Freelancers Association - Are you considering hiring an editor or ghostwriter to assist you in a project and don’t know where to look or how much you can expect to pay? Or maybe you’re considering getting into this line of work. This is a reputable website to aid your research.

American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) - I can't begin to list all the resources available by signing up for a membership. First year is $65, and it drops to $45 for subsequent years. Members have access to critique groups, networking, contests, conferences, and more. This is one resource I’ve utilized that has pushed me to a higher level in my writing career.

Writer's Digest - This magazine is the first writing resource I used, even before I had Internet! It is chock full of writing market information, current trends, and writing lessons for all genres. In addition, if you can’t afford $20 for a yearly magazine subscription, the website archives is overflowing with educational articles. Reading through them is like attending a free writers’ conference right in your own home.

2014 Writer's Market - Hot off the presses with the latest writing market information available! It’s worth the investment because you can utilize it several years by going to the website for each publisher listing and checking their updated writer’s guidelines. In addition to current writing markets are contest listings. Contests are a great way to get feedback and get your work noticed. The front section has sample book proposals and query letters, articles on how to pitch your work, and multiple other writing topics.

The Christian Writer's Market Guide 2013 - Like Writer’s Market above, you can utilize the information in this book for a few years by going to the websites for the individual listings to find current submission guidelines. (The 2014 version is set for February 1 publication.)

Okay, that should keep you busy for a while! If you've used one of these resources, how did it work for you? Do you have a favorite writing resource that’s not on this list? I’d love to hear about it.

Happy Writing!

(Disclaimer: I’m not guaranteeing success if you purchase any products listed above. Only you can decide what’s best for your career, including expending financial resources for services offered on any website.)

© Laura Hodges Poole


  1. I just saw this today! Thanks so much for mentioning my worksheets! You made my day today!

    1. You're welcome! Thanks for being so willing to help other writers.