Absolute Write


These are Web sites and blogs that Absolute Write thinks every writer ought to know about. We're interested in knowing what you think, so do let us know if you have a site you think we should consider including.

Literary Agent Blogs


Nathan Bransford
Bransford is a literary agent in the San Francisco office of Curtis Brown Ltd., a thriving New York based literary agency representing writers since 1914. He's always worth reading in terms of what agents need, want and are looking for, and for an educational discussion about publishing.

Janet Reid, Literary Agent
Janet Reid is one of the best known, most respected agents out there. In addition to interesting discussions about what she, and other agents are looking for, she's provided a lot of information about how to write a query, how to talk to an agent, and what not to do.

Et in Arcaedia, Ego
Jennifer Jackson has been an agent at the Donald Maass Literary Agency since 1993. She discusses publishing news, good and bad queries, and offers practical advice about writing and publishing.

Miss Snark
Miss Snark was a forthright literary agent who blogged anonymously for several years; while she is no longer adding new posts, the old content is very much worth reading. She's a fount of practical, honest, advice.

Market Resources


Duotrope's Digest
Duotrope's Digest is a database of over 2325 current markets for Fiction and Poetry. It's constantly updated, typically several times a day.

Ralan is a fellow writer, who categorizes, lists, and describes markets, including submission criteria, payment, and response time. It's an amazing resource.

Freelance Writing Jobs
Freelance Writing Jobs began in May 2005, the brain child of a freelance writer who wanted to help other writers find decent paying jobs. Now, it's much more than it's frequently updated lists of writing gigs, it's a vibrant community for freelance writers.

Media Bistro
Mediabistro is intended for anyone who creates or works with content, or working in a content/creative industry. That includes editors, writers, producers, graphic designers, book publishers, and others. Mediabistro is a creative community, providing opportunities to meet, share resources, find job opportunities and interesting projects and news, improve career skills, and showcase your work.

Writing Resources


Forward Motion
Forward Motion was started by SF and Fantasy author Holly Lisle in 1998, and has been owned and managed by Lazette Gifford since 2003. You'll find all ranges of writers, from the very new to those who are much published, and pretty much every genre, including poetry. The core purpose is "to help writers become professionally published." They prohibit fanfiction, and don't promote self-publishing. It's a really helpful community, and completely free.

Author Scoop
With exclusive columns and author interviews—along with constantly updated links to the latest literary news and reviews, videos related to the craft and business of writing, author quotes and poetry—AuthorScoop is a one-stop shop for both information and inspiration.

Writer Beware
You need to know about this site. It includes "warnings about literary fraud and other schemes, scams, and pitfalls that target writers."

Writing Workshops and Conferences


The ALPHA SF/F/H Workshop for Young Writers (ages 14 - 19)
"We're looking for enthusiastic, talented young writers who have a strong interest in science fiction, fantasy and/or horror and a passion for writing. Come spend ten days working with professional authors, each of whom will spend two days at the workshop." This looks like a fabulous opportunity; writers in past years include Tamora Pierce, Harry Turtledove, Catherine Asaro, Wen Spencer, and Tobias S. Bucknell.

"Clarion is an intensive six-week summer program focused on fundamentals particular to the writing of science fiction and fantasy short stories. It is considered a premier proving and training ground for aspiring writers of science fiction, fantasy, and horror. Instructors are among the most respected writers and editors working in the field today. Over one third of our graduates have been published and many have gone on to critical acclaim."

Clarion West
An intensive 6-week workshop with an emphasis on short fiction, in the genre science fiction, fantasy, and horror. Participants should be "prepared to write several new stories during the course of the workshop, to experiment and take artistic risks, and to give and receive constructive criticism. Each week the workshop is taught by a different highly regarded author or editor offering their unique perspective on the field. Class size is limited to 18 students. Instructors work closely with students, critiquing stories, leading class discussions on technique and other professional concerns, and holding individual or small group conferences."

Clarion South
"Clarion South—which runs every two years in Brisbane, Australia—is the most intensive professional development program for speculative fiction writers in the southern hemisphere."

Killer Nashville
"Three days of authors, contacts, & publishing. Over 40 panels and discussions available on mysteries, thrillers, and general writing and promotion techniques applicable to any genre.

"Since its inception in 1996, Odyssey has quickly become one of the most highly respected workshops for writers of fantasy, science fiction, and horror. Top authors, editors and agents have served as guests at Odyssey, and 53% of graduates have gone on to be published. The workshop, held annually on the campus of Saint Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire, runs for six weeks, and combines an intensive learning and writing experience with in-depth feedback on students' manuscripts. College credit is available upon request."

Viable Paradise
"Viable Paradise is a unique one-week residential workshop in writing and selling commercial science fiction and fantasy. The workshop is intimate, intense, and features extensive time spent with best-selling and award-winning authors and professional editors currently working in the field. VP concentrates on the art of writing fiction people want to read, and this concentration is reflected in post-workshop professional sales by our alumni."

Writer's Organizations


Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Inc.
SFWA is a non-profit organization of professional writers of science fiction, fantasy, and related genres. Founded in 1965 by Damon Knight, the organization now includes over 1500 speculative authors, artists, editors, and allied professionals. SFWA presents the prestigious Nebula Awards, assists members in legal disputes with publishers, and hosts the well-known Writer Beware web site.

Romance Writers of America
"Romance Writers of America is dedicated to advancing the professional interests of career-focused romance writers through networking and advocacy. The association represents more than 10,000 members in 145 chapters offering local or special-interest networking and education."

Australian Horror Writers Association
"The Australian Horror Writers Association (AHWA) is a non-profit organisation that formed unofficially in 2003 as a way of providing a unified voice and a sense of community for Australian writers of dark fiction, while helping the development and evolution of this genre within Australia."

Reference Resources


The American Heritage Dictionary of The English Language
This is the complete unabridged dictionary, with audio pronunciations, usage notes, and the Appendix of Indo-European Roots. If you're looking for an answer about English, ranging from spelling, to grammar to usage, start here.

Columbia Guide To Standard American Usage
Easily understandable explanations of grammar and usage.

The King's English. H. W. Fowler
This is a classic. The second edition was published in 1908, but there's still a great deal of practical wisdom.

Bartleby's Reference Section
This is a basic reference library, all freely available, some of them a little dated, but there are dictionaries, quotation collections, literary encyclopedias, histories, and a good collection of poetry and literature.