50+ Free Resources for Writers, Bloggers, And Other Freelancers

words-writing-pencilDo 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
  • Research
  • Organize
  • 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:

  1. 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.)
  2. Blogger — Provides a platform for creating and hosting blogs.
  3. Advanced Marketing Institute’s Headline Analyzer — Analyze headlines for intellectual, empathetic, or spiritual strength.
  4. Open Office Suite — Productivity suite includes a word processor, spreadsheet, slideshow tool, graphic tool, and database.
  5. RoughDraft – Donationware word processor designed specifically for writers.
  6. Jarte – Tabbed word processor includes many advanced features such as dictionary and thesaurus lookup. (Includes WordWeb.)
  7. 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).
  8. 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:

  1. Meriam-Webster Dictionary — Free online dictionary.
  2. Reference.com — Contains a full suite of reference tools including a dictionary, encyclopedia, thesaurus, and translator.
  3. Refdesk.com — Reference tool to help you access a wide variety of information.
  4. Word Web — A simple dictionary and thesaurus utility that you can download. (A more advanced version is available for a price.)
  5. InfoPlease.com — Another good way to locate data online.
  6. Encyclopedia.com — Search multiple online encyclopedias.
  7. Symbols.com — Describes the history and meaning of symbols.
  8. Library of Congress — Use the world’s largest library to discover what you need.
  9. 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:

  1. Bubble.us — Create and share mind maps online.
  2. FreeMind — Java-based mind mapping software.
  3. Remember the Milk — Mobile friendly to do list.
  4. ToDoist — Another mobile-friendly to do list utility.
  5. 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:

  1. Article Checker — Checks for duplicate online content.
  2. The Owl at Purdue — Contains many grammar and style resources.
  3. Elements of Style — Classic writing text, now available online.
  4. Graviax — Open source grammar checker.
  5. Word Count Plus — Free Firefox add on utility.
  6. Word Count Tracker — Online utility that not only counts words, it can count pages and posts too.
  7. Keyword Density Analyzer — Measure the keyword density of any website.
  8. Google Analytics — Register your website and learn about your traffic.
  9. 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.)
  10. Textalyser — Provides a number of helpful statistics about your writing.
  11. 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.)

  1. Wikimedia Commons — Many images on Wikimedia Commons are available for reuse.
  2. Stock.xchng — Popular source of royalty-free images.
  3. Flickr — Many photos are available for reuse.
  4. 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:

  1. Freelance Writing Jobs — Posts new writing jobs daily Monday through Friday.
  2. About Freelance Writing — Posts writing jobs on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.
  3. 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:

  1. Twitter — Networking in 140 characters or less.
  2. Facebook — Offers a great way to connect with friends and family as well as colleagues.
  3. 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.

Other Resources

Here are some other resources that you may find helpful:

  1. Timesheets Lite — Track your time. (There is a new version of this software that costs $32, but the older version is free.)
  2. PayPal — Receive money online.
  3. CutePDF — Create PDF files.
  4. 7Zip — Compress and archive or email files with this open source software.
  5. Freelance Switch Rates Calculator — Helpful in determining what rate you should charge clients.
  6. U.S. Copyright Office — Learn about copyright law.
  7. 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

Comments

  1. says

    Hi – I just launched a creative professional network called The Loop, http://www.theloop.com.au, which is a great resource for writers & freelancers to promote themselves online.

    If you are looking for work, want to promote yourself online or simply connect with others in the industry then its worth checking in out.

    You can create a FREE profile at http://www.theloop.com.au, clicking on “Create Your FREE Profile,” and following the simple step-by-step instructions.

    With some of the best Australian companies already signed up and searching through the profiles – including MTV Networks, Discovery Networks, Moon Communications, Like Minded Studios, CRC, The White Agency, Animal Logic, The Hyper Factory, Sixty40, Deepend and loads more – you might bag that dream job out of it!

    We only launched on Tuesday so all feedback would be greatly appreciated.

    Pip

  2. says

    Thank you for providing all these source sites. It’s impressive that i can find all that i need with just one post. This is very helpful to all writers who are looking for resources to reinforce their writing. Thanks a lot!

  3. says

    How did you compile such great collection of information ! I am amazed and impressed at this really.
    I cannot think I ever found anyone being so detailed and resource rich as your writing above. I recommend this to all and am forwarding the link to my entire circle to go through.
    I really appreciate the time and effort that you might have put it in getting it :)

  4. says

    Hi

    Some websites for freelance work:

    Bid-job
    Contracted Work
    Elance
    Freelance Center
    Freelance Free
    Freelance Jobs
    Freelancer’s Outpost
    Guru
    iFreelance
    iFreelancer
    oDesk
    Outsource Today
    People Per Hour
    Project4Hire
    Total Freelance

    Information Technology Specific:

    City IT Jobs
    Code Jobs
    Developreneurs
    Freelance Central
    Freelance Web Programming
    PHP Freelancers
    Rentacoder
    Support Universe

  5. says

    wow wow… that make it thrice !! , really nice and very useful article. i really got amazed when i checked the email. i have to learn it. as a new blogger, this will sure help me.
    -=-=-=-=-=
    thanks for the article Laura :D

  6. says

    I would like to mention some of my favorite tools as freelancer (graphic & web design).

    - Curdbee (http://www.curdbee.com) Free and Paid Invoice Manager (Create, Edit, Send and Get Paid)

    - PrimoPDF (http://www.primopdf.com), free powerfull PDF creator from any application;
    PDF Redirect free and paid (http://www.exp-systems.com), create PDF from any application – best feature you can merge
    you PDF files into one document.

    - RedMark (http://www.redmark.com/) collaboration web app for graphic designers and also for webdesigners when they build their mock-ups.

    These are very handy.

  7. says

    This is a fantastic and well-researched list! I would also add under “Other Resources” bit.ly. It’s a url shortener that also offer strong tracking. I’ve found retweets on bit.ly tracking before they’ve shown up on Twitter.

  8. says

    Thanks for all the resources!

    Jesaka, I like bit.ly too. I was thinking of devoting a separate article to it later on, but was not sure if there would be enough interest.

    Keep the ideas and resources coming!

  9. Nick Parsons says

    Great list! Some of these were very basic, but I think that’s good because sometimes the easiest solutions are the first to be overlooked.

    I especially liked Evernote and the Legal Guide for Bloggers, which I can’t believe I hadn’t heard about already. Thanks, Laura!

  10. says

    Great List. I also like Google Knol. I find its the fastest way to add any kind of article or blogpost and it seems google knol’s get added in search engines really quick without much effort.

  11. says

    Wow! This is an excellent resource. I especially admire the “Resources that Can Help You Check Your Work” and I have been busily grading and analyzing my and my clients’ work since opening this post an hour ago. Thanks so much for the truly helpful post!

  12. says

    Great list. There are a lot of combined great resources to help you do pretty much everything. I have a website with web traffic tips if anyone is looking for extra ways to market their blog or website and get more visitors to it by doing all free methods. Check it out by clicking on my name. Awesome article though. These are all great ideas and resources for writers online.

  13. Denver says

    As Kokushta mentioned invoice manager is an essential tool for freelancers. As for the tools both CurdBee and Freshbooks are great!

  14. says

    I read an article about earn money by doing some PDF conversion freelance job recently. Seems good, there are at least 2 conversion job on getafreelancer or odesk. Just buy a PDF to Word Converter, seems good, see if I can earn some extra money.

  15. says

    @Ed Martin thanks for the mention and I’m glad we’re playing a small part in your success! Let us know how else we can help freelancers.

    Laura, a fantastic list!! I love the mention of PayPal (okay, sure, because they’re a big partner of ours) but its accurate. Why manage money in a bank account, worry about handling checks, or even process credit cards when PayPal can do all of it for you.

  16. says

    Excellent list, with a lot of well-loved tools on it. Some favorites that haven’t been mentioned here are:

    Irfanview, a free tool for cropping/resizing/manipulating images (be sure to get the program ,and the plugins)

    PDF Creator, a free tool for saving files in PDF format

    and of course my own free guide to creating a professional business website for under $10 using WordPress, which can be found on my Bootstrap Blogger site.

  17. says

    After reading the list, I decided to try out Evernote in organizing my daily tasks and to-do lists. It proved to be very helpful! :D If only I could figure out how to set a nice background for the notes just like the ones in the homepage..

    Well anyway, love the list Laura! Thanks a bunch from a new Freelance Folder reader!

  18. says

    Everyone can write, sometimes all we need is a spark to light the fire, a match to fuel the flame. I am sure that you will find the writing tools and outlines at http://www.creativewriting-prompts.com another useful resource. A resource that you can refer back to time and again to help make your creative writing fun, easy and enjoyable.

  19. says

    We always met those PC Questions and much of time we cannot solve them, so we need help from others. There are so many ask website like Yahoo Answers and Microsoft Answers, which one is your favorite? Since you submit your questions to them, you can get answers even in seconds, right? When I met problems with Internet Explorer, I always delete them and download a new browser. If I met problems with Monitor, I always send it to a fix store. When my computer is infected with the virus, I will reinstall the system, so I do not have antivirus software installed.

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  24. Linda E. says

    Thanks a lot for the info. I am sure i can get few of the required images from above sites.
    We also use a website called http://pickupimage.com.
    If you are a website designer, blogger here you can download high resolution Free stock images for free.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] 50+ Free Resources for Writers, Bloggers, And Other Freelancers. The Freelance Folder blog offers a mother lode of resources that are great even if you’re not a freelancer.  Among the items:  Strunk & White’s Elements of Style; the Open Office suite of products; and Evernote, a site that lets you post and access your ideas. [...]

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