This is a guest post from education writer Karen Schweitzer. Karen is the About.com Guide to Business School. She also writes about online school for OnlineSchool.net. Enjoy!
The most productive writers know how to use the web and other tools to meet deadlines and achieve writing goals. If you are looking for new sites to inspire and new tools to help you write and edit your next piece, this article can guide you to 15 resources guaranteed to make you more productive on a daily basis.
Writing.com — Created for writers of all levels and interests, this online writing community is a wonderful place for writers to hone their skills, learn new techniques, and become a more productive writer. After signing up for a free membership, site users can create a writing portfolio, participate in writing activities, and utilize Writing.com’s many writing tools.
Writers Write — Writers Write is a comprehensive resource for writers who are looking for information on writing and getting published. The site features a blog, articles, book reviews, author interviews, news, writing jobs, and much more.
NaNoWriMo — NaNoWriMo (short for National Novel Writing Month) is an inspiring site for writers who want to adopt a seat-of-your-pants approach to novel writing. Every November, community members pledge to write a 50,000-word novel in 30 days.
WritingFix — This site offers free interactive writing prompts for writers who are having a hard time coming up with something to write on. Simply click on the prompt generator until you find a prompt that sparks your interest.
365 Pictures — Launched in April of 2009, 365 Pictures is a collaborative project that provides a new picture and thought-provoking writing prompt each day. Pictures include photos, illustrations, mixed media imagery, and other artwork.
Seventh Sanctum — Perfect for writers who have a difficult time naming their characters, equipment, or organizations, this site offers multiple name generators for nearly every occasion. Seventh Sanctum can also be used to come up with writing ideas and plot lines.
Grammar Girl — Productive writers can study grammar on the go with this amazing podcast from Grammar Girl Mignon Fogarty. Each episode is devoted to a particular grammar issue and includes quick and dirty tips for remembering grammar rules.
Style Guide — Given to everyone who writes for Economist.com, this handy guide makes a great reference for writers who need to quickly find answers to style questions. The guide covers everything from capitalization and punctuation to abbreviations and titles.
AutoCrit Editing Wizard — AutoCrit is a paid service, but writers can use it to edit short, 800-word pieces for free. The Wizard searches for overused words, repeat phrases, and sentence length variation.
Booksie — Booksie is a good site for writers who want to electronically publish novels, poems, short stories, and articles and receive critiques from other people. The site allows writers to build a profile, interact with the community, and retain full rights to all of their work.
yWriter — yWriter is free novel writing software that keeps writing organized by separating it into chapters and scenes. The software also backs up work automatically so that you never have to worry about losing a piece in progress.
RoughDraft — RoughDraft is a free, award-winning word processor for older versions of Windows. Features include live spellchecking, instant backup, genre-specific formatting, an HTML converter, a dictionary and thesaurus facility, and much more.
Wridea — Wridea is a free web application for writers who want to organize their ideas and better manage the writing process. The app can also be used to share outlines and brainstorming sessions with friends.
Web-Chops — Web-Chops is an excellent tool for writers who conduct their research online. The tool makes it easy to quickly collect information from around the web and place it on one web page.
Joe’s Goals — Establishing goals is a good way for writers to get on track and stay productive. Joe’s Goals is a simple way to establish and monitor all of your writing goals.