Here are some of the writing and blogging resources I use and highly recommend. I’m also including links to a few of the most helpful books I’ve read. Check back often, as I’ll update this page whenever I stumble on something worthy of adding.
Duotrope is the ultimate market listing and submission tracking site with over 5000 open markets searchable by pay scale, genre, length. The site also tracks average turn-around time and acceptance rate for the listings. Membership is either $5.00/month or $50.00/year.
The Grinder is in some senses could be considered a “free alternative” to Duotrope. While many of the services Duotrope provides are also available at The Grinder, the two sites don’t always share listings. The Grinder contains over 4000 open calls and is free to use for searching and submission tracking. While I do primarily use Dutrope, I wouldn’t necessarily endorse one over the other. In fact, I’d rather suggest you use both sites.
Ralan is another awesome market listing site. Unlike the previous two, it doesn’t include a tracking component, but you could easily use a spreadsheet for that. One thing that separates Ralan from Duotrope and The Grinder is that it does not list non-paying markets. If you’re a new writer looking for more options to get published, this does eliminate a large chunk of open calls, but if you’re an experienced writer looking for more professional markets, this give you less to sort out. Another thing worth mentioning about Ralan is that I’ve seen plenty of listings on Ralan that were not on Dutrope or The Grinder, so like I said, look everywhere!
When I first started querying literary agents, I said to myself, “Man, it would be so great if they made a Duotrope for agents.” Well, QueryTracker is it. It contains a list of over 1700 literary agents accepting queries for all genres. Like Duotrope and The Grinder, QueryTracker also allows you to track your queries as well. The site is free for one novel, and has an optional premium version for unlimited tracking.
Sadly, the publishing world is full of scammers and dishonest publishers hoping to swindle money out of eager, new writers. Preditors & Editors collects a list of independent publishers and publicizes any user complaints about the publishers.
AbsoluteWrite Water Cooler is another great resource for new writers. They include a forum called Bewares, Recommendations & Background Check that you absolutely must check out before signing a contract.
I know this might surprise you, but your writing is not perfect. It’s vital to have a neutral set of eyes read your work before it’s ready to submit. Scripophile is a great online critique group giving you opportunity to both have your work critiqued and critique other authors’ work. Basic membership is free, with an option for a premium membership.
Critters is another online workshop with a focus on Science Fiction, Fantasy, & Horror, boasting over 300,000 critiques. Give it a look if you write genre fiction and prefer to have critique partners more familiar with your genre.
Books About Writing
If you’re new to this writing game, you must read On Writing: A Memoriere of the Craft by Stephen King. It doesn’t matter if you don’t read horror, don’t write horror, or have never even heard of Stephen King. He lays out all of the basics of how to get started down the path of becoming a professional writer, starting out with how he got there. Again, read this.
I switched to Bluehost just over a year ago, an haven’t looked back. It’s great for WordPress hosting and offers incredible support. In fact, I was online with their support on Father’s Day at 2:00AM rebuilding my author site after I accidentally took it down. The best thing about Bluehost is not only its very reasonable price, but also the fact that you can host multiple domains for no extra change on the same account.