Tips on writing better fiction, workshops for writers and recommended writing books. Famous for their descriptive thesaurus series which help writers avoid cliches.
The mission of this site is, “To offer help and support, empowering writers everywhere.” Site founders, Becca Puglisi and Angela Ackerman share resources and tips that will help writers of fiction produce better work.
Becca and Angela met as critique partners on critiquecircle.com, an online community of writers who critique each other’s work. They happened to join the site at about the same time and out of thousands of other users, found each other and loved each other’s work. That was the start of one of the most powerful duos in the literary world today.
From Becca and Angela; “We are strong believers in innovation and are always trying to think about what writers need most of all. In addition to our bestselling Writers Helping Writers Descriptive Thesaurus Guides we have a web app that is changing the game for writers all over the world.
About the founders
Angela is the author of 8 bestselling resource books printed in 8 different languages. She is a writing coach, international speaker, and a firm believer that writers succeed best together. The desire to help writers in new, innovative ways led to One Stop for Writers®, a unique site originally co-founded with Becca Puglisi and Lee Powell (the creator of Scrivener for Windows and Linux). This creative portal contains game-changing tools and resources that enable writers to craft powerful fiction.
As an author, Becca loves nothing more than coming up with new content for her Writers Helping Writers® descriptive thesaurus collection (including the best-selling Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Character Expression, now an expanded Second Edition), which has sold over half a million copies. She also is co-founder of One Stop For Writers®, a unique online resource containing many helpful tools, craft tutorials, and the entire hyperlinked and searchable thesaurus collection to help writers elevate their storytelling. Becca is an international speaker who enjoys teaching workshops and presenting various writerly topics.
Descriptive Thesaurus Guides
Writers Helping Writers is well known for this series of guides. Here is a run down as given on the site. Note that not every thesaurus is a book and they are constantly in development and always accessible through a subscription at One Stop For Writers®.
A character’s relationships can either provide support and encouragement or setbacks and misery. Some even do both. Plan those relationships with care, choosing the ones that will further your story.
Every scene needs conflict. Sometimes that comes in the form of a major obstacle, and sometimes it’s something minor that amps up a character’s stress. Check out this collection of tension-building options to up the ante in a flat scene.
What job should your character have? What does this say about his goals, passions, or priorities? Careers are important not only for helping define your characters but also as a means of furthering their overall story goals.
Character Motivation Thesaurus
What’s your character’s overall goal? Why does he want it so badly? What might he have to sacrifice in order to achieve it? What roadblocks could stand in his way? Flesh out your character’s inner and outer goals, as well as their inner and outer conflict, so it all makes the most sense for you and for readers.
Weather & Earthly Phenomenon Thesaurus
Create the perfect mood and atmosphere for your scene using emotion-targeted sensory description.
Physical Feature Thesaurus
Hone in on your character’s specific physical features to describes them in a compelling and memorable way, all the while providing clues to the reader about who they really are.
Character Trait Thesaurus
Browse this collection of cardinal personality profiles which have been expanded to become The Positive Thesaurus & The Negative Thesaurus books. The complete collections can also be found at One Stop For Writers®.
Color, Texture, and Shape Thesaurus
Add layers to your description by choosing the perfect comparison, simile, or metaphor for different shapes, colors, and textures in the natural and urban worlds.
Make your scene descriptions come alive by including smells, sights, tastes, sounds, and textures to your setting. Over 100 different fictional settings are profiled here—a sampling of the 225 expanded and enhanced entries that are available in the Urban & Rural Setting Thesaurus books. The complete collection can also be found at One Stop For Writers®.
Symbolism and Motif Thesaurus
Deepen the meaning of your story through the use of iconic symbolism for different literary themes (the passage of time, coming of age, etc.).
Avoid frowns, shrugs, smiles, and eye rolls as you craft unique body language, thoughts, visceral sensations, and action for any emotion your character chooses to express. This sample of blog entries has been published not once, but twice, with the 2019 Second Edition of The Emotion Thesaurus containing a total of 130 emotions.
The Talent and Skill Thesaurus
Add authenticity to your characters by giving them skills or talents that make them unique and interesting.
Emotional Wound Thesaurus
Emotional wounds from the past have the power to greatly impact our characters’ personalities and choices in the future. Get to know your characters intimately by choosing the right emotional wound; understanding its effects will enable you to write realistic, fully-formed characters that resonate with readers and make sense for your story. The full and enhanced version of this thesaurus can be found at One Stop For Writers®.
This small companion for our popular Emotion Thesaurus contains some bonus entries on states that cause characters to become more emotionally volatile, like Stress, Hunger, Pain, and Attraction. It’s great for adding tension, creating complications, and encouraging your character to make mistakes.
Photos and videos by, or about, Writers Helping Writers.