37 Tools That Will Make You A Better Writer

Writing skills lie at the heart of web marketing. Being a good writer is essential for creating your own website content, and excellent writing abilities will help you think more critically and come up with new content more consistently in the long-term. Here is a list of 37 tools that will improve your content writing abilities.

The Basics: Grammar, Spelling, and Punctuation

Grammar Girl: Quick and Dirty Tips brings you Grammar Girl, a place where all kinds of grammatical questions are answered for anyone and everyone’s benefit.
University of Ottawa’s HyperGrammar: “This course covers approximately the same ground as our English department’s ENG 1320 Grammar course.” College-level grammar education for the low cost of free.
WikiHow’s English Punctuation How-To: I know that wiki pages are not considered “official authorities” on many subjects, but this article has been edited by almost 110 different experienced website contributors. If you need a good place to start, this is it.
Online Writing Assistant by Paradigm: Excellent articles on sentence structure and common errors.
Scribe Consulting’s Writing Tips: 26 free writing tips from an internationally-acclaimed professional writer with decades of experience.
Writing Tips from Writer’s Block: 20 helpful articles covering the nuances of word usage, abbreviations and capitalizations, numbers, and more.
The Guide To Grammar And Style Notes and examples of modern grammatical forms and features, compiled over many years by Jack Lynch, Associate Professor of English at Rutgers University.
Technical Writing: A complete style guide for technical writing.
The Economist Style Guide: Journalist’s Style Guides are excellent resources for finer points and odd questions when it comes to writing. Style guides are the newsman’s bible.
Dumb Little Man’s 40+ Grammar and Punctuation Tips: Don’t let the name fool you, this massive list of other resources has been republished all over the place because it’s just plain useful.

Practical Guides To Better Writing Skills

A Guide to Writing Well: Compiled from a number of famous writing guides, this primer gives writers an excellent resource for improving their skills.
Copyblogger’s Copywriting 101: Engaging tutorials that teach you the basics of how to write excellent copy. I’ve referred to this one often.
FutureNow’s Ultimate Copywriting Cheet Sheets: A two-part list of 101 excellent resources for improving your copywriting skills.
Passive Voice for Web Headings: Passive voice is usually frowned upon, but for writers needing a place to inject keywords, passive voice can be an excellent tool.
How to Write Magnetic Headlines: Tips on how to write headlines that will demand attention.
How To Write Landing Pages: Another excellent Copyblogger resource on landing pages and how to make them work for you.
50 Trigger Words for Powerful Multimedia Content: An excellent list of words that command attention and action for your CTAs, headings and active copy.
The Seven Deadly Sins of Website Copy: Michel Fortin is an expert when it comes to writing copy, and here is his list of what not to do when writing your own.
10 Writing Tips from the Masters: A concise list of tips from great writers throughout history.
How to Write Persuasive Links: Tips on writing persuasive anchor texts to drive conversions from content.

Cool Tools

Definr: A speedy little dictionary for when you need a definition fast.
Visuwords Graphical Dictionary: A word map that connects words with other related words and subjects.
Merriam-Webster Visual Dictionary: Diagrams and images that visually define curious words for writers asking themselves “what the heck is this thing?”
OneLook Dictionary: Feature-rich dictionary boasting one of the largest English word databases on the web.
OneLook Reverse Dictionary: The same dictionary, but backwards. Ever had an idea that you needed condensed in one word? Can you think of everything about a word but the word itself? This dictionary lets you describe a concept or ask a question and see a list of associated words in response.
WordWeb Pro: Convenient dictionary program with the ability to work completely offline. Great for digital writers that often find themselves on the go without an internet connection to rely on.
Verbix Conjugation Reference: Online verb reference that gives you proper conjugation for English verbs. Features downloadable program as well.
Grammarly: Free, instant grammar checking for any documents.
EverNote: Take all your notes in different places, keep them in one place for later. Sync across computers, across devices, and across mediums.
Elance: Online freelancing resource specifically for writers and marketers. Whether you write copy, fiction, code, or finance reports, if you can write it, you can get paid to do it here.
OmmWriter: I’ve featured this before, and I’ll feature it again. This excellent little word processing program helps you focus on your writing by blocking out all other distractions.

Writers’ Blogs Worth Following

Copyblogger: I’ve already referenced this site a few times because they produce amazing tips for writers. Stay up to date by subscribing to their blog.
ProBlogger: Helpful tips for bloggers looking to increase their revenue streams and tips for copywriters.
Write to Done: Tips on the general craft of writing, from journalism to blogging, fiction to business.
Daily Writing Tips: Exactly what it says on the tin. Great tips posted daily on a wide variety of writing topics.
Writer Underground: Writing tips delivered from 25 years of copywriting experience.
Six Sentences: For when you want to take a break from content writing and ad copy, Six Sentences offers budding fiction writers a challenge: produce a short story in six sentences or less. Submissions are posted daily.
Time to Write: Jurgen Wolff is a professional writer credited for classic TV shows including “The Love Boat” and “Family Ties.” He gives writing workshops and has published a handful of books on writing scripts and copywriting, and posts tips on how to succeed with your writing.

Or Just Ask Us!

Of course, we are writers ourselves. We use all of this stuff and even more for our products. There are plenty of helpful tips here, but if after all this you’re still in need of some help, check out our blog and let us know what we can do for you.

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Andrew Glasscock is currently based in Nashville, Tennessee. He graduated with a BA in English, specialized in Creative Writing, with a minor in Marketing this past May. Along with copywriting, he loves being an improv comedian, playing frisbee, and dogs.

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  2. […] There is considerable debate about writing the perfect bio – some say that it should be in first person in order to give a more “conversational” feel to the bio, and others prefer third-person distance.  Again, both approaches have their merits.  If you are uncomfortable with writing or with selling yourself, I would suggest going the third-person route since it allows you to place some “distance” between you and the subject.  Additionally, first-person bios are generally assumed to be written by the subject, while third-person bios could have theoretically been written by anybody.  So if you’re shy about self-promotion, hiding behind the relative distance of third-person really could help you be more honest about your accomplishments.  No matter what, just remember to keep it uniform across the board if there are going to be other bios alongside yours.  If your bio is in third-person but your accountant’s is in first, it’s just going to look unprofessional and uncoordinated.  Need some help getting those writing juices flowing?  Check out this post by my dear colleague Andrew which outlines 37 Tools That Will Make You a Better Writer. […]

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