Here’s an interesting question from Kim, one of my blog readers: She recently asked me whether I know of online communities that cover some of the writing issues I discuss on my blog. There are a few I’ve come across that I’ve found useful in terms of writing tips and author profiles. There are also sites that host forums where writers can exchange ideas, though I haven’t really tapped in to these. In any case, here are some sites you might find it fruitful to explore:
Authonomy: This is a site hosted by Harper Collins. As you’d expect, it’s designed as a vehicle for showcasing some of the publisher’s high-profile authors. Even so, it has some really valuable ideas and insights from successful writers that we can all benefit from. This are included in a section on “Writing Tips” — and they are well worth checking out.
BlogHer: This is a massive blog community focusing on women. It features blogs on every conceivable subject, from raising kids to writing. It’s free to join and once you do, you have access to writers who blog about writing. These outlets may be a source of
like-minded writers you can connect with.
Book Country: Penguin USA has launched this venture as a way of reaching out to “writers of genre fiction,” (note: the site operates separately from Penguin). It offers advice on publishing: finding an agent, marketing, and using social media. Book Country users are invited to submit work in a number of genres: romance, fantasy, science fiction, thriller, and mystery. There are forums where you can exchange ideas with other writers.
Protagonize: An online resource that lets you connect with other writers and share advice on refining your style and technique. There are plenty of different forums you can join to connect and critique.
Writers Café.org: An online writers’ community where you can share ideas and advice with other writers of poetry, novels, short stories, and drama. You can post your work, solicit help, join a writing group or start one, find out about free writing contests, and take free online writing courses.
A cautionary note: It’s easy to get caught up in these online communities and talk about writing instead of actually doing it! Getting feedback from lots of different people can be supremely confusing. On the other hand, having a real, honest-to-goodness writing group that meets face to face can be tremendously helpful. Write on!