Additional Reading, Apps & Websites

Can’t make it to one of our writing events? Just need extra help? Check out these titles for some ideas and writing guides!

Juicy Pens, Thirsty Paper:  Gifting the World with Your Words and Stories, and Creating the Time and Energy to Actually Do IT
by Sark
Learn how get writing ideas flowing with this guide that’s written in the style of a doodle-filled notebook.

Just Write: Here’s How
by Walter Dean Myers
Novelist Walter Dean Myers, who wrote Monster, discusses how he became a writer, and provides steps and outlines to guide beginning writers through the writing process.

Guy-Write: What Every Guy Writer Needs to Know
by Ralph Fletcher
Writer and teacher Ralph Fletcher lets guy writers know it's OK to write what they love: humor, grossness, battles, fantasy and horror.  He counsels guy writers on how to talk with their teachers about writing what they love to satisfy assignments. Along the way, Fletcher peppers the text with suggestions for ways to make all types of writing stronger.  He interviews writers guys love—guys like Jon Scieszka, Robert San Souci and Robert Lipsyte—and they talk about their writing processes.   Fletcher even includes a reading suggestion for each type of guy writing.

Seize the Story: A Handbook for Teens Who Like to Write
by Victoria Hanley
Hanley uses examples from familiar series such as Harry Potter and Twilight to illustrate elements of writing, such as the development of characters, setting, voice, plot, rewriting and polishing.  The activities at the end of each chapter provide the opportunity to apply the techniques presented and experience the whole writing process.  The book concludes with interviews with authors for teens, in which they include advice to young writers.

Naming the World: And Other Exercises for the Creative Writer
edited by Bret Anthony Johnston
Harvard creative writing professor and author Bret Anthony Johnston offers advice and exercises for serious writers.  Every chapter is a master class with respected authors, renowned editors, and dedicated teachers.  The chapters focus on topics like dialog to leave unsaid, exploring point of view, and delving into your imagination.

On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft
by Stephen King
In 1999, Stephen King began to write about his craft -- and his life.   On June 19 of that year, he was struck by a car, jeopardizing both.  On Writing begins with an account of King's childhood. A series of vivid memories from adolescence, college, and the difficult years that led to his first novel, Carrie, offers a fresh and often funny perspective on the formation of a writer. King next turns to the tools of his trade, offering practical and inspiring advice on everything from plot and character to work habits and rejection.  On Writing culminates with an exploration of how King's need to write spurred him toward recovery after the accident, and brought him back to his life.

Writing Magic: Creating Stories That Fly
by Gail Carson Levine
The author provides advice on all aspects of fiction creation. Sections titled "Liftoff," "Heart and Guts," "Plowing Through," "Digging Deeper," and "Writing Forever" address such topics as coming up with story ideas, developing characters and plot, and finding opportunities for publication. Each short chapter gets quickly to the point and closes with writing prompts.  Levine encourages you to takeyour work seriously while remembering to have fun.

Spilling Ink: A Young Writer’s Handbook
by Anne Mazer and Ellen Potter
After receiving letters from fans asking for writing advice, authors Anne Mazer and Ellen Potter joined forces to create this guidebook for young writers. They mix inspirational anecdotes with practical guidance on how to find a voice, develop characters and plot, make revisions, and overcome writer's block. Fun writing prompts will help you jump-start your own projects, and encouragement throughout will keep you at work.

The Writer’s Journey: Mythic Structure for Writers
by Christopher Vogler
The Writer's Journey explores the powerful relationship between mythology and storytelling in a clear, concise style that's made it required reading for movie executives, screenwriters, playwrights, scholars, and fans of pop culture all over the world.

The Writer’s Market
by Writer’s Digest
If you’re serious about writing, you’ll want to continue submitting your work long after this contest is over.  The Writer’s Market, published annually, lists thousands of opportunities for writers, and includes material on the business of writing.

The Curiosities: A Collection of Stories
by Maggie Stiefvater, Tessa Gratton and Brenna Yovanoff
More than 250 flash-fiction stories have appeared on the Merry Sisters of Fate blog written by the three authors, and this collection rounds up 30 of the best—with a twist. The stories are presented unedited with comments from the author of each story and her two friends in the margins.  An interesting look at the first phase of the workshop process.

Creative Writing the Easy Way
by Heather L. Hirschi
This all-new title discusses, analyzes, and offers exercises in prose forms. It describes uses of written verbal imagery and symbolism and instructs on descriptive and dramatic writing, with sample passages to demonstrate good style. All Easy Way books contain both short quizzes and longer tests with answers to help readers gauge their learning progress.

Reading Like a Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and for Those Who Want to Write Them
by Francine Prose
In Reading Like a Writer, Prose invites you to take a guided tour of the tools and the tricks of the masters. She reads the work of the very best writers—Dostoyevsky, Flaubert, Kafka, Austen, Dickens, Woolf, Chekhov—and discovers why their work has endured. She cautions readers to slow down and pay attention to words, the raw material out of which literature is crafted. 


WattPad (Free) On this website you can connect with other readers and writers from around the world. Undiscovered and published authors alike share their works.

A Novel Idea (Free) A useful tool to help plan out your story. It has preset categories of novels, scenes, characters, locations, and ideas in which you fill in the details and link everything together to create your story’s plot. A great tool to stay organized while writing your story. Apple

Writing Prompts ($1.99) This app gives you access to over 600 creative writing prompts that you can view online or offline. There are also 5 prompt generators that create writing prompts from current events, scene elements, words, and sketches. Apple

Write Or Die ($9.99) Get rid of your writer’s block with this app that forces you to stop procrastinating and keep writing. You can choose your punishments for what happens if you become distracted and stop writing. Once you meet your writing goals that you’ve set, the punishment is disabled and your work is saved.


Written Kitten - Use this cute website to keep you writing! Set your word limit, say 100 words, and every time you write 100 words, a cute image of a kitten shows up! With a different image each time, this should surely motivate you to keep writing until you finish that story!

Writer’s Digest -Writer’s Digest provides writing prompts for free! Just pick one that sounds interesting and get started writing! This is a great way to get those creative juices flowing for your short story!

Writing Prompts on tumblr - Now you can use tumblr to view interesting writing prompts and practice your short story writing skills. Click through to find one that sparks your creativity!

The Writer’s Den - The Writer’s Den is a great website that has different generators for plot ideas, character names and profiles, first lines, locations and more! If you need help generating an idea for your short story, this is a great website for you!

Figment - Figment provides a writing community where you can get feedback from others on your stories and connect with other readers and authors.

Poe War - Poewar provides writing prompts, advice on creating characters, and articles on writing as a career. – allows you to create charts of where your characters are, or the flow of events. It’s a great (free) way to organize your stream of consciousness.