Prompts and Pointers

"Write the kind of story you would like to read. People will give you all sorts of advice about writing, but if you are not writing something you like, no one else will like it either."
— Meg Cabot 

drunkpylades:

If you have problems focusing while you write, try using ILYS.

The site is coded so that you can’t see what you are writing, only the last letter, and you can’t edit anything until you get to your words goal.
This means you have to focus on writing and what’s on your mind, and not the editing of what you have written so far.
You have to write or you can’t edit.
Once you hit your goal you can edit and write normally, or go back and use ilys once again.

Since you don’t have to worry about editing, you can let your creativity flows.
It can be frustrating, but it’s also liberating because you have to let it go.

Write first, edit later.


Useful Writing Websites

fictionwritingtips:

I compiled most of the writing websites I’ve mentioned on my blog into one post. I find a lot of these sites useful, so hopefully they can help you out!

Imagination Prompt Generator: This give you a one-sentence writing prompt that will help you come up with ideas. I think it also allows you to set a ten minute timer for each prompt.

Wridea: I really like this site because you can write down simple ideas that you can organize later and put into a bigger project. You can share these ideas or the site will help you randomly match ideas. It’s great for brainstorming and building a fully formed outline.

List of Unusual Words — Here’s a site you can browse through that gives you a list of unusual words for every letting in the alphabet. If you’re looking to switch up your vocab, or looking to develop a way a character speaks, this is a good reference.

Picometer — Here’s a writing progress meter that can be embedded on your site or blog. There’s also the Writertopia meter that shows word count/current mood. 

Cut Up Machine: This website takes whatever words you typed or pasted into the box and rearranges your sentences. It’s not practical for writing a novel, but it might help with poetry OR coming up with ideas. Experiment with it and see what you can come up with.

Orion’s Arm: This is a great website to use if you want to research worldbuilding or if you have science questions. There are tons of resources you can use.

Word Frequency Counter: If you’re finding that you’re using the same words over and over again, this website should help. You’ll be able to count the frequency usage of each word in your text. This should help you switch up the words you’re using and understand where the problem might be.

Phrase Frequency Counter: This is same site explained above, but it counts the phrases you’re using.

My Writing Nook: This allows you to write or jot down ideas wherever you are. You don’t need to have your laptop in order to access it, so it might help you during this time. You can write as long as you have your phone.

Writer: The Internet Typewriter - This site lets you write, save, share, and/or convert your writing online. I tried it out and it’s pretty cool. It saves for you and is a great way to brainstorm or plan out some ideas.

The Forge - The Forge is a fantasy, creature, spell, and location name generator. It’s awesome.

One Word: This site gives you one word to write about for 60 seconds. This should help you get started with your own writing and will work as a writing prompt to get you warmed up. It’s a great way to get yourself motivated.

Confusing Words:  On this site you can search through confusing words that often stump many writers. It’s not a huge reference, but it should help you with some writing/grammar issues.

Cliché Finder: This site allows you to enter parts of your writing and it will search for clichés. If you find that you’re using the same phrases over and over again, this will help a lot. I haven’t messed around with it too much, but it looks useful.

Hand Written Fonts: If you’re looking for great hand written fonts, this is a great reference. All of them are pretty awesome.

Tip of My Tongue — you know when you’re trying to think of a specific word, but you just can’t remember what it is? This site will help you narrow down your thoughts and find that word you’ve been looking for. It can be extremely frustrating when you have to stop writing because you get a stuck on a word, so this should help cut that down. 

-Kris Noel


characterdesigninspiration:

Quite a few people requested some form of trait/personality generator, and here’s the result!  I wanted to keep it vague enough that the options could work for any universe, be it modern, fantasy, scifi, or anything else, so these are really just the basics. Remember that a character is much more than a list of traits, and this should only be used as a starting point– I tried to include a variety of things, but further development is definitely a must.

Could pair well with the gender and sexuality generator.

To Play: Click and drag each gif, or if that isn’t working/you’re on mobile, just take a screenshot of the whole thing (multiple screenshots may be required if you want more than one trait from each category).


"I think writer’s block is simply the dread that you are going to write something horrible. But as a writer, I believe that if you sit down at the keys long enough, sooner or later something will come out."
— Roy Blount, Jr.  (via maxkirin)

spookyjoel:

HEY WRITER FRIENDS
there’s this amazing site called realtimeboardwhich is like a whiteboard where you can plan and draw webs and family trees and timelines and all that sort of stuff. you can also insert videos, documents, photos, and lots of other things. you can put notes and post-its and, best of all, you can invite other people to be on the board with you and edit together!! 
this is really really awesome and a great tool for novel planning, so if you’re doing nanowrimo…. this could be good for you!!


This is a great website and helped me to lay out so many things. Use it. It’s beautiful.

spookyjoel:

HEY WRITER FRIENDS

there’s this amazing site called realtimeboardwhich is like a whiteboard where you can plan and draw webs and family trees and timelines and all that sort of stuff. you can also insert videos, documents, photos, and lots of other things. you can put notes and post-its and, best of all, you can invite other people to be on the board with you and edit together!! 

this is really really awesome and a great tool for novel planning, so if you’re doing nanowrimo…. this could be good for you!!

This is a great website and helped me to lay out so many things. Use it. It’s beautiful.


rottenappleheart:

Protip for fanfiction writers: if you find yourself fighting canon, ask yourself whether that canon information was delivered by a secondhand source or by a person who could be either lying or uninformed. You’d be amazed how many “canon truths” you can handwave as misinformation then.


Anonymous asked: "I simply CANNOT stop stressing out over word counts long enough to actually write my books. I only manage a few hundred words a day (Which is pitiful when there's folks out there writing thousands) before the fear and anxiety starts to kick in; I know that the publishing industry has very set standards, and word count is one of them, and I can't count on being the exception... and all of this is STRESSING ME OUT. This pressure is putting a death-grip on my work! What can I do?"

You can stop using applications with word count features. You can write notes around your station reminding you that you are not defined by your word count. If you’re concerned in writing more, you need to set out time just for writing. Start blocking the phrase ‘word count’ on your browser. Seriously. If it’s that big an issue, you need to block it out. 

posted 5 months ago with 21 notes

atlantis-wakes-deactivated20140 asked: "How can I find blogs and other sources by minorities in the US, mainly Japanese-Americans, Turkish-Americans, and African-Americans? I'm writing a story with characters who come primarily from these backgrounds, and google isn't yielding anything past international relations for my searches. And that's the one thing I do know."

I really have not the slightest clue, I’m fiercely sorry, but maybe our followers can help.

posted 5 months ago with 10 notes

Word List: Alternatives to “Whisper” (Amended)

writeworld:

We have added definitions of each word and an example sentence. Also, we have omitted hinted and insinuated, as we agree with fellow writers’ suggestions that they are not suitable additions to the list.

Instead of whispered, consider:

  • murmured: A soft, indistinct sound made by a person or group of people speaking quietly or at a distance: "Don’t go," he murmured, grabbing her hand as she turned to leave.
  • mumbled: Say something indistinctly and quietly, making it difficult for others to hear:"Thanks a lot," he mumbled sarcastically.
  • muttered: Say something in a low or barely audible voice, esp. in dissatisfaction or irritation: She muttered to herself all the way down the hall, reciting all her usual complaints.
  • breathed: Say something in a quiet voice or whisper: "I love you," she breathed, her eyes full of tears.
  • sighed: Emit a long, deep, audible breath expressing sadness, relief, or tiredness; say something in a low or barely audible voice, esp. in sadness or irritation; to say exasperatedly, or all in one breath: "Right," he sighed. “Well, just don’t do anything too stupid.”
  • hissed: To utter with a hiss, esp. in instances that include one or more sharp sibilant sounds, as of the letter s"Just stop," she hissed, her grip on Lisa’s arm tightening.
  • mouthed: To form (a word, sound, etc.) with the lips without actually making an utterance: "The baby’s asleep," she mouthed, leading her parents back into the living room.
  • uttered: To give audible expression to; speak or pronounce: He uttered a string of barely audible insults.
  • intoned: Say or recite with little rise and fall of the pitch of the voice: "I’m not going anywhere," she intoned. He could tell she was exhausted by the pitchless quality of her voice.
  • susurrated: (susurration) The indistinct sound of people whispering: The room hummed with the soft susurrus of conversation.
  • purred: To utter a low, continuous, murmuring sound expressive of contentment or pleasure, as a cat does: "I know you want me," she purred into his neck, trailing kisses across his collar bone.
  • said in an undertone: To speak in a low or subdued tone: "Not now, Jessee," he said in an undertone.
  • gasped: Say (something) while catching one’s breath, esp. as a result of strong emotion: She could hardly gasp out an apology.
  • said low: (slang) Say something in a quiet voice or whisper: "Plants are more like us than you think," he said low, as if he spoke to the lilies themselves.
  • said into [someone’s] ear: Say something in a quiet voice or whisper, esp. near the listener’s ear, in such a way that only they may hear: "Meet me in the parlor," he said into Jane’s ear, and her heart betrayed her with a flutter of excitement.
  • said softly: Say something in a quiet voice or whisper: "I’m here now," Usula said softly, brushing a lock of hair from her cheek.
  • said under [one’s] breath: (idiom) Say something in a muted voice or whisper: "Over my dead body," Jacob said under his breath.
  • said in a hushed tone/in hushed tones: (idiom) Say something  in a softened tone, or in a quiet voice or whisper: "Will he make it, Doctor?" Kendraasked in a hushed tone.

Thank you to everyone who reblogged this list to add their opinion. We have, with their permission, included some of these opinions so that you may benefit from their perspective.

memattbe adds: Whispered is the simplest and conveys what you mean by a whisper the best. Maybe murmured would be a good substitute if you just used whispered. Muttered, sighed, hissed, gasped, mouthed, purred, breathed, mumbled all mean things noticeably different than whisper. The said… ones aren’t bad, but one word is better than four.


ankh-the-odd adds:Also, don’t use alternate words for said.

It’s not boring, people’s eyes will just move right over the word said. If you use something else, you draw attention to it, and it messes up the flow of the text completely. You come to the end a bit of dialogue and then think “Woah okay what just happened.” It looks really unprofessional, tbh.


mumblingsage adds: I’ll just add that it’s always good to know a lot of not-quite-alternative words in case you ever think a character whispered, only to find out that they actually were murmuring it. The point is precision.

Or sometimes to avoid repeating words, but in that case you probably shouldn’t have a character performing the same action multiple times in a few paragraphs, or at least from continuing to remind the reader they’re doing it (if you state that a character is whispering, the reader will assume they continue whispering throughout the scene, until told otherwise).

And, um, if you thought your character was whispering and they’re actually susurrating…you might want to get that checked out.


There was another truly wonderful criticism of this list that is quite long, so we are including it in a Read More. Click below to see bobbyisrightthereyaidjit's critique.

Read More