Free Resources GIVEAWAY!


There are tons of resources available to writers. Where do you start? I’ve narrowed it down to four that I find very helpful.


Words are our tools, and Merriam-Webster online dictionary and thesaurus are the most reliable resources for finding the right word. This is the house standard for many publishers.

Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL)

Is your writing comma-heavy? Are you trying to remember what active vs. passive tense is all about? This website will refresh your memory.

The Elements of Style – Online

It seems William Strunk, Jr. has made his way into every Writing 101 class in the nation. Now it is freely available online.

Yeah, yeah, get to the giveaway!

We all want to create an emotional experience for our readers. One of my favorite writing books that helps in this area is The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Character Expression by Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi. It’s a perfect resource for fiction writers – packed with insights on personality traits, human responses and physical behaviors to all kinds of emotions. I don’t know how any writer gets along without it.

Want to win a free copy? (You do, trust me.) To enter the giveaway, simply leave a comment below and tell me about some of your favorite writing resources. I’ll announce the randomly-selected winner on Wednesday, Oct 9th.

Until then, click here to download the free PDF companion book. Free books to improve your writing? Heck yes!

Good luck!

10/9/13 Update: The giveaway closed today. Congratulations Jackie Randall! Don’t worry – there are more giveaways coming soon.

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  1. For a long time, I devoured all the writing books I could find, but don’t think I really had a favorite. Now, I follow so many awesome authors with helpful blogs about writing, I can’t even remember the last time I paid for a book!
    But, heck yes! I’ll take a freebie any day of the week!

    Sharon 🙂

    1. I know – I’m the same way. I really only have two favorite writing books, and The Emotion Thesaurus is one of them. The other is Debra Dixon’s GMC: Goal, Motivation & Conflict. I’ll have to do a post/giveaway on that in the near future. Good luck in the drawing, Sharon!

  2. Favourites in arms reach right now: Plot&Structure by James Scott Bell, Penguin Plain Words by Sir Ernest Gowers, Hit Lit by James W. Hall, On Writing by Stephen King, Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott, Editing Made Easy by Bruce Kaplan, and, top of the list at the moment, Writing Tools by Roy Peter Clark.

    1. Oh, I have Plot & Structure sitting on my shelf right now. I haven’t read it yet, but this is good motivation. Thanks for all the great recommendations. The Stephen King book was recommended over and over again at the last writing conference I attended. Perhaps I need to dig in. Thanks, Jackie!

  3. I need a good thesaurus and a strong cup of coffee to write. But, and I know this will seem like flattery, the Emotional Thesaurus has become another indespensible writing tool. I use this website ( to help me with my greatest grammar weakness of properly doing dialouge.

    I’d also be remiss if I didn’t mention Ms. Holly Lisle. She is a writing teacher, and I’ve learned a great deal from her courses.

  4. My favourite resources include On Writing by Stephen King, Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott, my monthly copy of Writing Magazine and quarterly copy of Mslexia.
    I’ve now got a few more to add to my list after reading these comments – thanks!

  5. My favorite resources for writing are Story Engineering and Story Physics by Larry Brooks. Another helpful one is RIvet Your Reader with Deep Point of View by Jill Nelson. I’ve just recently acquired GMC – Goals, Motivation and Conflict and have used the suggestions there to help define my characters.
    I already own The Emotion Thesaurus and use it routinely, so don’t include me in the drawing!
    Thanks for all the good suggestions.

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