Do you ever catch yourself buying too many new books and courses all at once? To the point that you feel guilty and wish there was a free resource for writers out there?
I know I’ve been guilty of this! Especially after I quit my job to write full time and didn’t have a way to supplement my lack of income yet.
But then I discovered the ultimate FREE resource for writers and never looked back.
You Need This: The Ultimate Free Resource for Writers:
If you haven’t guessed already, it’s The Library!
This is a FANTASTIC resource for writers. Mainly because it’s an entire building dedicated to books. And what writer doesn’t dream of THAT?
Since it IS filled with books, this means you have access to resources for your research, different comp books or current popular books, printing, conference rooms, and even the Internet. All for free–ok, maybe printing is 10 cents a page, but at my library, the first five pages are still free. 😊
Here are three main reasons why writers should be taking advantage of this free resource:
1. You get free access to all of your comp books, instead of buying them all.
As writers, we should support each other. It’s why I buy my friends’ books once they’ve been published and attend their book signings.
Buuuuut I really can’t buy all the books that exist. Money and space get in the way of that dream.
Instead, I will research a list of books that are similar to a topic I’m interested in writing and go in search of what I can read at the library. Like books on red pandas, or bullies on the playground, and even books on counting or shapes.
This is a great resource to get your hands on multiple comp books at once. (And if you need convincing to read your comp books, please read how to target your perfect reader and why reading comp books
2. Writer’s groups meet there frequently.
When you’re just starting out, it’s important to find a group of fellow writers to bond with, bounce ideas off of, and get honest feedback on your writings.
I first discovered an ENTIRE community of writers in my area after being invited to a library writer’s group. The best part is we still get together at least once a month and it’s been FOUR YEARS since I met them!!
Some days I wish they weren’t so honest.😉 But I know to be successful, I need them in my life. (Read more on why you should join a writer’s group here.)
3. There are often events for writers hosted at the library. (And most of the time, they’re FREE!)
Depending on what library you visit, there are normally a lot of events hosted throughout the month. Yes, a lot are geared toward kids and family outings, but some are actually set up for writers.
I’ve attended events where published authors visit to talk about their books, sit on Q&A panels, and come to teach more about the publishing industry. There have even been a couple of times where industry professionals even let YOU submit your manuscript to them.
And those are just the free events.
I’ve also paid for workshops with published authors (Including one of my favorites: Steve Berry 💕), and they are normally more cost-effective than attending a conference.
If your library doesn’t offer any events, I’d talk to your librarian. They’re always looking for new ways to bring people into the library! And if they’re not able to, normally there’s a nearby library that can.
How do you get set up to use the library?
You can start using a library immediately. All you need is to ask the main desk for a library card. Which normally requires the librarian asking for your driver’s license and potentially proof of mailing address. (Not all libraries require you to live in the area, though.)
You can also get a temporary library card if you’re just visiting or wanting to browse the internet for a bit before committing to a card.
There are also library apps you can use, but most require a card before you can “check” items out:
- OverDrive (Most common)
- Libby (by OverDrive–might have less inventory)
- Virtual Library Card (Just used this for a book I couldn’t get ANYWHERE!)
Don’t forget that the BEST PART is this is a free resource for writers. But the value you will gain is immense.
Talk to your librarian about different events you’d like to see or comp books you’d like them to find for you. Most are more than happy to help you out!
And be sure to read these other articles:
- 6 Best Writing Books to Improve Your Writing
- 10 Best Websites for Writers
- The Benefits of Joining a Writer’s Group
- What to Expect at Your First Conference
- What’s a Comp Book & Why Do you Need Them