Research is a crucial step for fiction writers, from historical fiction authors to flash fiction writers. Even if all the information you gather in your research doesn’t end up on the page, it does make your writing more concise, engaging, and vivid. So, resources for writers to help with researching, writing and editing come in handy to speed up the process.
For a while, I’ve had the idea of putting all the links to my resources for writers and tools for writers in one place, just for myself. But sharing is caring, right?
At the moment, this is mostly a link dump with websites and tools I’ve found useful. The goal is to add more resources to it over time and include your suggestions too!
So, if you’re a fiction writer or a blogger, the following tools for writers, academic websites and other useful websites are great additions to your bookmarks.
Last update: 12/2022
In this section, you’ll find glossaries and other basic knowledge in topics like medicine, architecture, and history, as well as general tools and tips to streamline your research process.
1. Research Tips
A detailed, helpful breakdown of a writer’s research process, from a fuzzy idea that came in a dream to a set of useful facts to inform, inspire, and move a story forward.
2. Research Tools
A research assistant that summarises articles and posts to help you get to the key findings quickly.
I have mixed feelings about tools like these (it could be the topic of a future blog post?), but if you’re dealing with a ton of research, it may come in handy.
Ever needed to look up a medical fact for a story? You’ll find a few useful resources here.
One of my biggest frustrations as a writer is struggling to describe buildings and rooms with precision. An architecture glossary saves a lot of time when you’re looking for the right word to make your descriptions more focused.
A few resources about the latest discoveries in different scientific fields to spark your imagination.
Need help with worldbuilding for writers? Check out the resources below:
History, from general stories from the past to details of everyday life decades or centuries ago, is a great source of inspiration for writers. Check out these resources below:
Note-taking apps are the most important tools for writers. Depending on what your process looks like, you might want a simple notepad or a fully-fledged knowledge management app. Luckily, there are plenty of options to choose from.
1. Note-taking apps
A self-hosted knowledge base for all your note-taking needs. Unlike other text processing software, Obsidian supports backlinking to connect your notes and help you create new knowledge.
Its hundreds of official and community-made plugins make it an incredibly flexible tool that can be customised to your needs. On the flip side, this can make Obsidian a bit daunting for inexperienced users coming from simple text processing software.
However, if you want a pretty app, this isn’t it. Obsidian is very practical and you can customise skins, but you won’t get the same aesthetic results you would get in Notion.
Disclaimer: I use Obsidian for all my research and writing. In my opinion, it is an indispensable tool for writers, especially those with hundreds of files of writing and research. Backlinking and tagging make it easy to retrieve information, and the graph view helps many writers make new connections that result in new content.
The app is free to use, with added paid extras like syncing, publishing, and support.
Platforms: Windows, macOS, Linux, iPhone and Android.
This web-based note-taking platform makes it easy to share your notes and documentation, and access it anywhere. You can create documents from scratch or use templates. Its flexibility makes it easy to use it as a notepad, a project management system, a database, and more.
Personally, I could never get on board with Notion — I found it hard to use and was never able to create an easy workflow with it. But it’s not a popular app for nothing, so it’s always worth giving it a try.
Platforms: Web, macOS, Windows, iOS and Android
2. Editing apps
These editing apps for writers serve as a second pair of eyes. From spotting typos and punctuation errors to removing excess adverbs, these apps are a must in your workflow.
This free web-based spelling and grammar check helps you edit your writing to make it more concise. It focuses on sentence length and difficulty to streamline your writing.
This grammar and style checker highlights much more than spelling and punctuation mistakes. It helps detect word repetition, excessive adverbs, and even clichés.
Grammarly’s comprehensive recommendations keep your writing error-free.
Prompts and exercises for fiction writers
Need inspiration? The following prompts for writers are the perfect place to start your next story.
Here you’ll find useful resources to improve your writing — from literary theory breakdowns to writing tutorials from fellow writers.
2. Writing courses
A list of paid writing workshops in different genres.
3. Writing tutorials
4. Literary theory
5. Writers on Youtube
Writing tips and publishing insights.
Wondering how and where to publish your stories? Here are a few links with more information about publishing for fiction writers.
1. Medium Publications
Royalty-free photos to use on your fiction blog
Unsplash and Pixabay are awfully helpful, but have you ever noticed certain stock photos keep popping up everywhere?
One way you can make your blog stand out is by using images in certain styles or topics. For example, in my blog, I try to use vintage photos, art, and only recent black-and-white photos as a last resort.
These are trickier to find, as you don’t find a lot of them on stock photo websites.
The following websites will come in handy if you want the images on your blog to give a unique look to your writing.
Note: Found a perfect photo on Flickr? Pay special attention to the license for that individual photo. Not all licenses allow you to use images on your blog or book. You can read more about the license types on this Flickr support page.
So, there it is — a list of links with tools and resources for writers. Do you have any you can’t live without? Drop it in the comments below and I’ll add it to the list.