These are a bit random, but useful in their own ways. Most arose from conversations with other authors or in talks at SiWC. I'm not a member of all of them. Please don't consider this an endorsement as I don't know the ins and outs of all the platforms in great detail, but I do think they can help someone out there!
1. The 12 steps of Intimacy.
This wasn't where you thought this was going, was it?
So this is useful in general. Desmond Morris is credited for defining the twelve stages of intimacy. These steps increase bonds and provide a better connection. The fun thing? Well, it's also how you build a realistic relationship in a novel. You can't skip through these, else things feel rushed, forced, or artificial.
There! Now you know! And for me, who struggles to get characters together, it helps to ensure I didn't just skip over a few steps.
Reference: Morris, D. (1971). Intimate Behaviour: A Zoologist's Classic Study of Human Intimacy. New York: Kodansha America, Inc.
2. The Creative academy
This is an online community with resources for courses and mentors. Fully in, there are writing prompts, daily forum conversations, and access to mentors. Connect with other writers and take advantage of three experts: Donna Barker, Eileen Cook, and Crystal Stranaghan. I could lose days in there, learning! I'm putting it on the back burner for now, but it comes highly recommended.
3. Rambo's Academy for Wayward Writers
Another community, this time put together by the amazing Fantasy/SciFi author Cat Rambo (her blog: http://www.kittywumpus.net/blog/). Courses by a veteran author and teacher (30 years and counting!) But also support, market news, and critique exchange on their forums. Being that it's Cat Rambo, the website is populated by the fantasy and science fiction community. Plus, she's an awesome person.
4. Writing excuses podcasts
This long-running podcast series is at https://writingexcuses.com. It covers a vast gambit; from personal reflections on books, to interviews with authors, to nitty-gritty of the industry, including marketing and financing (you know, those things new authors don't know anything about). There are many, many hours available, but season 2 and 3 are the most useful for me so far! Check it out (and be prepared to spend a lot of time enjoying their conversations!)
5. Canva.com website
I did warn you these were random.
I was recently introduced to this and wow! It's a free (you can pay for a fancier version) website with a huge stock of images and templates for any kind of visual art. This means posters, advertisements, twitter banners, facebook posts, and more! No more worrying about resolution; it handles that! It's easy to learn and fast. Once done, you can download your image and use it again and again and again....
I hope someone finds these at least useful!
D. Lambert, author
Fantasy novels that entice, inspire, and entertain.