Writing Resources

The writing resources on this page are apps, blogs, links and pages that I have found useful for my writing.

 Online  Writing Meetups

The Covid-19 Pandemic has forced us into isolation, maybe physically, but not socially. Online resources have suddenly become even more important and vital to stay connected. Many creative opportunities have popped up to help us support each other with our writing, through online conferencing platforms such as Zoom, Hangouts and Microsoft Teams, to name but a few.

These are a few groups that I have found. Some provide prompts, some are online meetups enabling up to simply come together and write with one another at the same time. Many miles, if not continents apart, but together.

London Writer’s Salon

 

The ‘Writer’s Hour’ is at 8am every morning for an hour of writing over coffee.

There is now a two hour long ‘Late Edition’ now too, on Wednesday evenings for the night owl writers amongst us. Of which I guess, there are many.

London Writer’s Salon

Just a wonderful meetup to write all together at the same time, for 50mins. They read out an inspiring quote every morning for you to think about if you want to do a stream of conciousness / freewrite / Morning Pages. Really helpful, supportive group to get stuff done.

Shutup and Write®

Both international and local groups. With the international groups, don’t forget to factor in the time difference between countries. I turned up to one, only to find out it had happened several hours earlier. Ooops!

Shut Up & Write!® Norwich

Shut Up & Write!® Norwich

Norwich, GB
36 Writers

Shut Up & Write!® is more than a movement, more than a good idea. We’re a method of writing that delivers. As an international organization, we are thousands of writers in a w…

Next Meetup

Shut Up & Write!® ONLINE

Tuesday, Jun 2, 2020, 4:00 PM
1 Attending

Check out this Meetup Group →

Shut Up & Write!® Online Events (San Francisco, US)

Shut Up & Write!® Online Events

San Francisco, CA
595 Writers

Join our first ever group exclusively for Online Shut Up & Write events!At Shut Up & Write, we believe in the power of community—now more than ever! That’s why we’ve set up a…

Next Meetup

Shut up and Write in Google Hangout!

Tuesday, May 26, 2020, 6:00 PM
15 Attending

Check out this Meetup Group →

 

Writer’s HQ

Not a conferencing group, but they frequently run procrastination busting writing courses via email. “For badass writers with no time or money”

They lots of email courses, online and writers retreat.  My current fave is the current Monday morning Journaling meeting on Crowdcast – via easy weblink – just chatbox rather than actual chat.

I really enjoyed the prompts they used. I started because I thought it would be handy to get  back to Morning Pages journaling. But then it turned out the prompts were just handy to get the mind opening up anyhoo and weren’t ‘journal specific’… whatever that is. Really useful hour long session to just get unblocked and get those words out.

 

 

Creative Futures

Running online writing workshops for underpriviledged and under-represented writers and artists, encouraging diversity & inclusion in the arts.

The Zoom session is not really a writing group, but a lecture/discussion hour where you go away and write in your own time. But useful for interesting snippets of poetry / books / quotes.

 

 

 

Local Resources

Local writing resources here in Norwich.

Writing Prompts

Writing prompts for when you are stuck, or even when you’re not, but just need a starting word or phrase to start a free-write.

Take Three Nouns
Writing Exercises

There are lots of writing exercises on the Writing Exercises site but one of my favourites is Take Three Nouns. Does what it says on the tin. Generates three random nouns.

Random Image Generator

Also on the Writing Exercises page is a random image generator.  If you fancy using a visual cue to spark your creativity instead of using words. Or maybe use a combination of both?

Random Word Plus

Watch Out for Snakes

Another random word generator for free writing. With the one you get to choose the word type and it’s complexity. Additionally you can pick a randomly generated, phrase, sentence or even paragraph.

Language is a Virus

A website full of prompts and games, exercises and techniques to help get the creativity flowing again.

Soundscapes to Write to:

My Noise

 
‘My Noise’ is a website of ambient sounds, such as sea, wind and rain, café noises, forest, garden, waterfalls. Each soundscape page has sliders so you can vary the individual component sounds. So, if you don’t like listening to the flow of water trickling, but prefer bird songs, want more tweeting and less cuckoo, you got it. It’s awesome. 

Competitions and Awards

Writing Competitions

Bridport Prize

The Bridport Prize holds writing competitions for novel writing, poetry, short stories and flash fiction.

BBC Script Room

Accepts unsolicited original, complete scripts for comedy and drama. Have distinct window submissions throughout the year. Check their website for details. The site also has an area listing other potential writing opportunities 

Mslexia – The Magazine for Women who Write

Short Story, Adult Novel and Flash Fiction competitions

PlayWriting

Liverpool Hope Playwriting Prize

The Bruntwood Prize for Playwriting

TLC Free Reads
The Literary Consultancy and Arts Council England

TLC Free Reads is an Arts Council England funded scheme that provides a bursary to writers on a low income, that enables them to have a free assessment of their writing by The Literary Consultancy.

Chosen writers have their writing read and assessed by a professional specific to their field and they are provided with detailed and constructive feedback on their work.

I found out about TLC Free Reads via The National Centre of Writing in Norwich, but the scheme is run by different regional writing partners all over the country.

Check out the TLC website for details of the one nearest to you along with the submission rules and guidelines, eligibility criteria and info on how to apply.

If you are eligible, what have you got to lose? Just do it! Send that manuscript or section of the thing that you are writing over before the deadline. I almost didn’t submit anything, because of the pressures on me at the time.

In my moment of indecision, someone told me that my writing and what I loved doing was more important than what was bothering me and to go for it. So, I am passing it forward and telling you to do the same!

Poetry

The Poetry Society

The poetry competition is open to anyone over the age of 17. Poems must be no greater than 40 lines in length. Deadline: 31 October 2019

Ledbury Poetry Festival

First prize of the Ledbury Poetry Competition is £1000 cash and a residential course at Ty Newydd. Deadline: 18 July 2019 at 5pm

 

Writing Courses

Couch to 80K Writing Boot Camp
Tim Clare

I love Tim Clare’s Couch to 80K Writing Boot Camp. It’s a free writing course, via podcast that runs for 8 weeks and only takes approximately 20 mins. It gets you started on writing for just 10 minutes per day with simple exercises that become more interesting and challenging as the course progresses. It gets your creativity flowing and gets you into a writing habit. Tim Clare is also funny and makes it an entertaining journey.

100 Days Writing Challenge with Tim Clare

If you want to really get into a good writing habit and poke your creativity into life, Tim Clare now has a 100 day writing challenge. Just like the 80K Boot camp, it’s just a 20 minute podcast with 10 mins of writing. It is just as funny and entertaining as the Writing Boot Camp, only longer. It is funded by Arts Council England so is totally free.  The link in the title above takes you to the intro on Day 0. Enjoy.

Software

Cold Turkey Writer 
Cold Turkey Software

This software turns your PC into a simple typewriter for the time duration that you set, or until you reach your required number of words. You can’t use your computer for anything else until you meet your goal.  A little frustrating, but it works.

 Pacemaker

Allows you to set goals over a specific time-frame and then monitor your progress. I used to to set up and monitor my #30DayPlay goal of writing 667 words per day for a month.

Books

Into the Woods by John Yorke

Amazon.co.uk link

I picked this book up on a whim from a local book shop because I was a bit overwhelmed with all of the writing resources available on the internet and I couldn’t choose where to focus. This turned out to be an accidentally amazing and invaluable buy.

It pretty much sums up all of the information I was reading on play writing on the internet but without all the clutter and waffle in between. I’ve owned the book for less than a year but it’s already looking battered and coffee-covered and I still haven’t read it from cover to cover yet. I keep dipping in and out of it as, when I read it , it really helps inspire me and gets me focused on my writing.

I re-read sections of it when I start writing something new and when I feel stuck and it never seems to fail to get me writing again.

Further Resources