"Literature adds to reality, it does not simply describe it. It enriches the necessary competences that daily life requires and provides; and in this respect, it irrigates the deserts that our lives have already become." C.S. Lewis
Here's just a few things I have learned or used in my writing journey:):
Query...the five letter expletive In this post I included a checklist for brainstorming a query letter. I compiled the list based on the research I've done, advice I've been given, and classes I've attended on writing queries. I hope you find it useful.
Dan Wells 7 point Story Structure System Dan Wells is hilarious! I watched this presentation at LTUE and laughed my butt off. I use this system all the time. It's fabulous!!! Watch the youtube video if you want a good laugh, or you can download the power point and go through it at your own pace. He also does a podcast with one of my favorite authors Brandon Sanderson, its so fun! There are links to it on his site.
Drakes Class List I went to this author's class at a League of Utah Writers conference. He too was funnier than crap and I learned a ton.
Long Ridge Writers Group This is location of some online classes I took. I had some awesome instructors who helped me publish my first short story and taught me a lot about honing my craft. Mary Rosenblum was my Novel Course instructor and she does a newsletter with great tips and advice. Its free for anyone to subscribe. You can also read articles written by authors addressing various problems that plague writers. I love Mary's Shoulder Vultures article!
Encyclopedia Mythica This site was fabulous for generating ideas and for referencing mythology around the world.
National Park Service, Nature and Science This site was instrumental for researching the settings in my books.
Agents and Authors Representatives AAR Every published author I've talked too strongly recommends using this site when researching agents. Agents who are certified with the AAR are required to stick to a certain code of ethics. I like to think of it as the Better Business Bureau for agents. I know there are good agents out there who aren't members but it's always a good idea to do your homework. If they aren't a member see if their agency is. If no then check them out on Preditors and Editors. Better to be safe than sorry.
Preditors and Editors Use it. Love it.
Publishers Marketplace This site is great for researching agents. You can view their pages and see if they might be the right fit for your book. You can also research publishing houses here as well. Small presses are a good option for first time authors without publishing credentials many agents look for.
Agent Query Is a lot like Publishers Marketplace. Whenever I researched an agent I looked for them on all the above sites as well as viewed their own websites. You'd be suprised to find how much their information varies from site to site. If you find this happening, stick to the submission guidelines on their personal or company website, it's more likely to be up to date.
Life the Universe and Everything This is a conference geared toward science fiction and fantasy authors. I love it!
League of Utah Writers If you live in Utah you can join this for a minimal fee and participate in all the conferences and classes at a discount. Round-up is a lot of fun!
Indie Author Hub This group is geared specifically to LDS independent authors, but no matter your faith you can attend their awesome conferences!