The 6 Best Online Communities for Writers
Whether it's fiction, nonfiction, fanfiction, or anything in between, the web offers countless spaces where writers are free to share their work, explore other people's writings, and find a community.
Aspiring creators can dip their toes in the water and see what it's like to deal with constructive criticism, while established writers can test out ideas and see what works better for their story.
Let's look at some platforms that house the best communities for online writers.
Critique Circle has been around since 2003 and is one of the oldest online writing communities. It's well-known, and its members are there to offer assistance and camaraderie.
Its members don't blast you with criticism, but instead, actively work towards providing constructive feedback that will help your work.
For every critique you post, you'll get served with credits. Depending on the length of your post and the story you're critiquing, the credits you earn can range from 0.5 to two credits. You need three credits to submit a story of your own.
The platform houses thousands of members, with over 100,000 stories shared and 400,000 critiques posted. You can interact with everyone, create discussions on various topics, and belong to an accepting community.
Writers Helping Writers is a platform that offers an array of resources for writers, as well as for editors and teachers. You're free to register as a user and work towards improving your writing.
You can find various tutorials, webinars, as well as marketing and writing tools that you can use for free. There's even an idea generator available.
With Writers Helping Writers, you can find a community willing to accept, support, and help you as a writer.
If you're an aspiring writer that lacks experience, this is the place for you. Underlined offers to help build you up as a writer, craft your skills, and boost your confidence.
The site was created by Penguin Random House, and it's geared towards newer writers. It offers a welcoming writing community willing to give support and advice.
Underlined provides a space to make connections, explore the world of writing, chat with authors, and more. It's an inclusive community dedicated to supporting writers.
Scribophile is among the most well-known writing communities available online. It offers guidance, help, and support for aspiring writers. You can access tutorials and workshops, as well as reach out to professional writers who can provide tips and tricks of the trade.
Like with Critique Circle, Scribophile requires you to collect points (karma points) before it allows you to submit a work yourself. You get these points by posting critiques on other people's writings. In other words, you give feedback in order to receive feedback.
Joining the community is free, but the free profile comes with some limitations. If you choose to pay for the $9/month ($65/year) subscription, you get access to everything Scribophile offers, including unlimited submissions and messaging. Either way, the site is ad-free, and is an excellent resource to use to help you grow as a writer.
If you want to push yourself as a writer or simply lack motivation or drive, NaNoWriMo is for you. NaNoWriMo boasts a community of writers who challenge themselves to become more productive.
NaNoWriMo is short for "National Novel Writing Month." The platform sets out an annual challenge to writers, daring them to produce 50,000 words for a novel during the month of November.
You don't have to complete your novel in this one single month, but rather aim to get a large chunk of work done. You're free to plan out your work throughout the year and reach out to other members for advice, support, and feedback on your thoughts and ideas.
Motivation can sometimes be hard to come by, and if you're a procrastinator at heart, it can be difficult even to start the writing process. The idea of becoming an organized writer may seem like an aspirational dream. But if a challenge can get you going, look no further than NaNoWriMo.
The Next Big Writer provides a welcoming environment where you can find camaraderie. It offers writing classes and workshops, discussions, feedback, support, and advice for writers.
The community can assist you with every step of your creative process, helping you get published, and market your book. Many members of the community have already been published, and you're encouraged to reach out to them.
The Next Big Writer offers a free and paid membership. The Basic Membership is free but has limitations. On the other hand, the Premium Membership unlocks everything the platform has to offer, including the ability to post unlimited content. It costs $7.95/month or $69.95/year.
The Benefits of Being Part of a Community
A community grants you access to constructive criticism. And, not just a bunch of people spewing negativity for the sake of it, but actual valuable advice to help you become a better writer.
Sometimes, you simply need a second opinion. A pair of fresh eyes looking at what you've been writing can be genuinely helpful.
While you might not realize that something can be improved upon, someone new to your work can reach that conclusion much faster. All it takes is a slight adjustment to the direction, and that can prove to be a major help.
Apart from guidance on a piece you're still writing, you can also ask your community to review a work you've already completed. Strangers often offer the best criticism—unlike family or friends, they won't sugarcoat their words to avoid hurting your feelings.
Aside from receiving feedback, you can also benefit from support. A community willing to welcome you and provide any assistance is invaluable. After all, who can better understand what you're going through than another writer?
Joining a Community Is a Must
Being a writer can often feel reclusive. Belonging to a community of people like you, who face the same challenges, is an excellent way to find kindred spirits.
And, if you're not one for socializing, the right community can be beneficial to your writing. Having access to published authors and getting constructive criticism, advice, and support is invaluable.
Every artist can benefit from finding a like-minded community and sharing their work. Make the jump and find your community. With so many options at your fingertips, don't be scared to explore them all and find the right fit for you.