Send Out a (Re)Search Party

Within the past two months, I have written a total of 700 words on my novel. I know… I’d better slow down or I’ll have it written in the next decade or so.

The thing is, I’ve never written fantasy before. I’ve always stuck to the “write what you know” motto, but now, I find myself in unknown territory. I’m a true academic at heart, so when I’m unsure of my next move, I research.

Along that line, I’ve found a lot of really useful tools over the past couple of months, and I wanted to make sure share them with all of you just in case they could help anyone else as well!

Each name of the site is linked for convenience.

A Fantasy Avatar Creator
A flash-based “game” that can help you develop avatars of your characters. I’ve found it helpful to be able to write my characters when I can see their faces.

Although the customization is a bit limited, you can create several different types of characters and looks with it. It’s a bit clunky to use, but it gets the job done for a rough draft of what your characters may look like.

They do seem to have a variety of other avatar creators on their site, but this is the only one I’ve tried.


Fantasy Name Generator
Honestly, sometimes, I’m terrible at coming up with names, and adding fantasy into the mix, it get even more convoluted.

This site has been a game changer. I use it regularly, and I never fail to find a spectacular name to name a character, pet, or place. This resource is an extensive list of categories for you to use to name an assortment of characters, etc.

See pic below for a small selection of the categories!


Typeform
To get outside perspectives on character personalities, I use Typeform to survey my friends on their opinions about character traits.

My friends helped me decide on religious views, favorite colors, most memorable scent from childhood, etc. Typeform will gather their answers and you can either export to excel or review the results right on the site.

This tool is a great tool to create surveys to poll people about a variety of details. It’s easy-to-use and free (to an extent)! You can create your own Typeform survey, or you can use a template.


From there, I’ve also done my best to continue writing, whether it be for the development of my novel or just to make sure that I’m still working on my craft. Sometimes, during writer’s block or low points, it’s good to just write. It doesn’t matter what you write as long as you are keeping the movement. For that, I suggest:

750 Words
All you do is log in and type. It can be absolute trash or a journaling technique you’re using to track your days. It doesn’t matter. The site encourages you to get at least 750 words a day (which is more than my novel right now).

Not only will it let you privately type, but it will give you statistics on your writing as you go on. I’ve found this particularly helpful in showing myself that not every day is a bad writing day, even if I didn’t get a lot done.


Hopefully, these have helped some of you! Please let me know if you found them helpful or if you have any other suggestions for me to check out!

I also plan on reviewing the books I’m using for research at a later date (gotta finish them first).

Happy Writing!

Informative Writing Tips

B L Knight View All →

Escaping the real world by writing worlds of my own.

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