Whenever I sit down to write, these are my top must-have tools. Are there tools that you cannot write without?

  1. This one is from my college days, but the Harbrace Handbook will always be one of my go-to’s.  This little wonder book has citation for MLA, APA, and more! Definitely a useful tool to have when you are writing something that’s on the more academic side.
  2. Any style guide that pertains to the organization I am serving. There are many different kinds of style guides; The Associated Press and the Chicago Manual of Style are just two that I use. These are a must-have whenever you are writing for a particular organization. Even the US Government has one of their own!
  3. A dictionary and thesaurus. If you have ever been at a loss for words, or just need help describing something a little more vividly, then you need to have these two best friends. They can be the difference between writing an exceptional or an extraordinary piece!
  4. McGraw Hill’s Proofreading Handbook. I love to use this when I am asked to proofread a client’s work. This book will show you which marks to use to thoroughly clean up and correct a document…even if it is just your own.
  5.  Last but not least: a notebook! Yes, I like to kick it old school! A notebook is where I can freely jot down my ideas and where I generally start my first draft.

All of these tools are essential in helping me create pieces that I am proud of. Hopefully, these tools can help you as well!