Concrete Detail

Erika Hayes, Author – Write like a reader, read like a writer and edit like a beast!

2018-01-30 (3)Here we are on day two of this awesome site review.

Let’s take a look at what you will find when you investigate “The Stacks” tab on One Stop for Writers.

  • Checklist and Tip Sheets-  This is a place to find just that from Adding Conflict to Worthy Goals.  The expertise of the authors is given to you in a clean, neat infographic.
  • The Idea Generator – YES!  It is a great place to get your creative juices going. Offering ideas on emotional wounds, plot complications, fears, hobbies, internal growth, likable qualities and behaviors, quirks, secrets, and story prompts.  Using this feature to enhance a story you are already knee-deep in or to get you started on something new.
  • Templates and Worksheets – If you know anything about Pintrest or own one of the thesauruses you know the writers behind this are also the same individuals responsible for “Writers Helping Writers” a plethora of worksheets and ideas to help you organize and think out your story.  (More on that in a future post). The best part about this function on the site is I can fill them out and download them.
  • Story Maps  – This amazing feature allows the writer to build a printable and very valuable story map. When on this page be sure to mouseover each of the boxes in the sample for a clear and enlightening summary of what each step of a story map entails.
  • Scene Map (Formal and Informal) – Both of these are great tools for bettering your scene work.  The formal allowing you to plot out the important elements of a scene.  The informal allowing you to ensure your protagonist is always chasing that goal. These are completed online in your own personal workspace. They are printable when complete and can save you so much time.  I love the ease in which these tools can be accessed and completed.
  • Timeline – Pantser or Outliner can benefit from this tool.  Keeping your timeline in order is vital to a writer (nothing more irritating then writing a scene and realizing you have whacked out the timeline.) This also helps all writers keep pacing in their story.  You will find the places you are lagging your story here.  (Always helpful to know before the editing process!)
  • Worldbuilding Surveys – Okay I admit it when I first starting using this site, I thought oh that is for SCI-Fi, Fantasy,  and epic writers.  (I do write some fantasy.) I didn’t really investigate this tab– MISTAKE!  It is amazing for helping build a town for your novel.  Even if you are writing about a place that is real, you need to use this function to make sure you are including the things the readers may need to complete the image of a place they have never been.  – Here I need to insert an important lesson – I was reading a book that was recommended to me and the setting was in NYC.  I have only been to NYC once, the author of this book wrote about streets, intersections, and places as if everyone should know.  I stopped reading the book.  I couldn’t picture the setting because while the detail worked for someone that had lived in NYC a one time visitor would never be able to see what the author had.  This is why I suggest spending a little time on this tab for all your writing.
  • Thesaurus Tutorial – Believe it or not, this is a very helpful tool.  It is not just a “how to use” it explains the way to best use the thesauruses on the site.  Take a few moments and you will learn a lot on this tab.
  • Lesson Index – Just like it sounds.  It is an index of some great lessons you will take from this site.

When I say any serious writer needs this resource in his/her arsenal I am understating.  It is one of the best sites I can recommend for anyone that has a desire to put pen to page.  Novelist, poet and everything in between will benefit greatly from this site.  It is as mentioned yesterday (see post here)  the prices are more than reasonable.  Trust me you will not regret it!


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