50+ Free Resources for Writers, Bloggers, And Other Freelancers
Posted December 6, 2009 in Business, Productivity
Do you maintain a blog for your freelance business? Are you a freelance writer, blogger, or someone who writes regularly?
If you answered yes to any of those questions, then this article is for you. From organization, to finding ideas, to doing the research — there are dozens of free resources that can help you write better. In this post, we’ve found 50 that we think will be valuable to you.
Here are 50 free resources to help your writing or blogging efforts:
Types of Free Resources for Writers and Bloggers
We’ve found 50 different free resources for writers and bloggers. The resources listed here will help you:
- Write or Blog
- Check your work
- Illustrate your work
- Find work
- Get connected
Let’s start with resources to help you write or blog.
Resources to Help You Write or Blog
There are many free tools available online to help the freelance writer or blogger. The following list includes several of the best free writing and blogging tools that we’ve found:
- WordPress — Import this popular content management system to a private domain or host it directly on the wordpress.com site. (WordPress is also available as a mobile app.)
- Blogger — Provides a platform for creating and hosting blogs.
- Advanced Marketing Institute’s Headline Analyzer — Analyze headlines for intellectual, empathetic, or spiritual strength.
- Open Office Suite — Productivity suite includes a word processor, spreadsheet, slideshow tool, graphic tool, and database.
- RoughDraft – Donationware word processor designed specifically for writers.
- Jarte – Tabbed word processor includes many advanced features such as dictionary and thesaurus lookup. (Includes WordWeb.)
- Zoho Writer — Part of the Zoho productivity suite which has a wide range of applications ranging from an email service (Zoho Mail) to conferencing software (Zoho Meeting).
- Google Docs — Allows you to create and share documents online.
Resources to Help You Research
There are many online resources to help freelance writers and bloggers. Here are just a few:
- Meriam-Webster Dictionary — Free online dictionary.
- Reference.com — Contains a full suite of reference tools including a dictionary, encyclopedia, thesaurus, and translator.
- Refdesk.com — Reference tool to help you access a wide variety of information.
- Word Web — A simple dictionary and thesaurus utility that you can download. (A more advanced version is available for a price.)
- InfoPlease.com — Another good way to locate data online.
- Encyclopedia.com — Search multiple online encyclopedias.
- Symbols.com — Describes the history and meaning of symbols.
- Library of Congress — Use the world’s largest library to discover what you need.
- History.com — Website for the popular History television channel contains a wide variety of historical information.
Resources to Help You Get Organized
There are many free resources to help writers and bloggers organize their thoughts, or their work. Here are a few:
- Bubble.us — Create and share mind maps online.
- FreeMind — Java-based mind mapping software.
- Remember the Milk — Mobile friendly to do list.
- ToDoist — Another mobile-friendly to do list utility.
- Evernote — Create virtual sticky notes that you can access when you need them.
Resources to Help You Check Your Work
Here are some free tools that writers and bloggers can use to check their work:
- Article Checker — Checks for duplicate online content.
- The Owl at Purdue — Contains many grammar and style resources.
- Elements of Style — Classic writing text, now available online.
- Graviax — Open source grammar checker.
- Word Count Plus — Free Firefox add on utility.
- Word Count Tracker — Online utility that not only counts words, it can count pages and posts too.
- Keyword Density Analyzer — Measure the keyword density of any website.
- Google Analytics — Register your website and learn about your traffic.
- Website.Grader — Type in your website URL and this site will tell you whether your website is effective. (The grader.com family of tools also includes tools to measure your effectiveness on Twitter, the effectiveness of your press release, and the effectiveness of your book marketing.)
- Textalyser — Provides a number of helpful statistics about your writing.
- Citation Machine — Allows you to properly cite your sources based on several popular style guides.
Resources to Illustrate Your Work
Freelance writers and bloggers often need images to illustrate their work. Here are some sources of royalty-free images. (Always read the license agreement associated with a particular image before using it.)
- Wikimedia Commons — Many images on Wikimedia Commons are available for reuse.
- Stock.xchng — Popular source of royalty-free images.
- Flickr — Many photos are available for reuse.
- Morguefile — Another source of free photos.
Resources to Help You Find Work
While there are many places to find writing or blogging jobs, online three of the best sites include:
- Freelance Writing Jobs — Posts new writing jobs daily Monday through Friday.
- About Freelance Writing — Posts writing jobs on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.
- AllFreelanceWriting — Has a job board for freelancers.
Social Media Resources
It’s important for freelance writers and bloggers to get connected. Social media is a great free way of doing that. Here are some of our favorite social media sites:
- Twitter — Networking in 140 characters or less.
- Facebook — Offers a great way to connect with friends and family as well as colleagues.
- LinkedIn — Professional networking. (There is a premium version that costs money.)
There are many other social media resources, of course, and most of them are free. You may find others that work well for your freelancing business.
Here are some other resources that you may find helpful:
- Timesheets Lite — Track your time. (There is a new version of this software that costs $32, but the older version is free.)
- PayPal — Receive money online.
- CutePDF — Create PDF files.
- 7Zip — Compress and archive or email files with this open source software.
- Freelance Switch Rates Calculator — Helpful in determining what rate you should charge clients.
- U.S. Copyright Office — Learn about copyright law.
- Legal Guide for Bloggers — Maintained by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, this guide discusses legal issues that bloggers may face.
Share Your Free Resources
We’ve shared 50 different free resources for freelance writers and bloggers. Now it’s your turn to share your favorite resources in the comments.
Image by jeanbaptisteparis
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