Rather than being incompatible though, the web and (creatively) written words are perfectly compatible. Don’t forget that the Internet started out as just a bunch of text.
As a creative author – professional or aspiring – the web can be a wonderful place. Below are some of the best and most inspiring places a word doctor can go.
Since being founded in 2000, Writing.com has grown out to be the single largest writing community site on the web – and not only thanks to the convenient web address. Even after a relatively recent design overhaul, the website still looks a bit old school. At times, browsing the website can feel a bit stiff, but what it misses in UI, it makes up for in content.
Users can hone their pen by writing within a number of subgroups, embedded in the Interactive and Non-interactive categories. Non-interactive documents are one-document short-stories, poems, essays, interviews and (despite the article subject) even non-fiction. Sadly, a premium membership is required to use the multiple chapter book templates.
The non-interactive categories include interactive stories, campfire stories (spinning stories in a group of close friends), and even quizzes.
Writing.com is the largest, and quite possibly the most feature-rich writing community. Because of its size, evidently not all writing hosted on the writing site is quality material. But the rich interaction, and support for independent formats, makes it a worthy place to try your pen.
Storybird is a rather interesting collaborative storytelling project, focused around picture books. Ordinarily, two or more people connect over the site, and write part of the picture book in turn, in a robin go round style. Additional people need to invited by the one who started the story, so the collaboration is aimed on friends and family – perhaps a parent with child.
If you want, though, you can write the entire story on your own.
The pictures are supplied by a small army of artists. Before you hit off, the site asks you to pick a work of art from the gallery, or browse by art themes. Starting off from your initial pick, the Storyboard story maker, depicted above, is filled with a jumble of other drawings by the same artist. You can drag these drawings on the canvas, and add text. Finished picture books can be shared online, made public on the site or (in the future) even printed!
Protagonize is a modern, aesthetic writing community that’s been around since 2008, and has received much acclaim. It’s entirely based around collaborative storytelling, and is perhaps the only one of these kinds of writing sites that actually feels good to use.
Central are the interactive stories, or so-called addventures. These stories consist of small chapters, after which a choice is presented to the reader. The reader can effectively direct the character through the adventure.
It’s by all means not a new concept, but the web has given it a whole new dimension. It’s not just directing the story anymore. You can start, or continue on a whole new branch of the story, and everyone can contribute!
Apart from the addventures, you can also start a collaborative linear story, where other writers are able to add new fragments, but can’t branch off. If you’re not all the community-animal, you can opt for solo stories as well, but believe me when I say you’re missing out on a lot of fun.
Like Protagonize, Bibliofaction is focused on one kind of storytelling, but it’s not interactive. Instead, they believe in the power of the short story, it being “perfect for this busy day and age”. The main goal of Bibliofaction is to re-promote creativity to a generation that has been lulled by fixed-format reality TV, or for that matter, any kind of entertainment.
Like that, Bibliofaction is becoming the modern home of the short story, a day where writers and readers meet, and share experiences. Another nice incentive are the short story competitions, which are held by Bibliofaction. Show off the true might of your pen, and you might even win a couple of attractive prizes.
What do you think of the above writing sites? Do you know any alternatives, that we shouldn’t have missed? By all means, let us know in the comments section below.
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