Brandon wrote a mid-month letter for National Novel Writing Month one year. In it there was a link to his first published book, Elantris. I enjoyed the letter and decided to download a sample of the book on my Kindle. I don't remember how I 'accidentally' started to read it while it was still November, but I did. I didn't write another word until the book was done. It's that good, and so are the rest of his books.
Neil is a master of weaving a completely immersive story. For years he was my absolute favorite author and I still greatly enjoy his work. (Though I do wish he would publish more of it.)
Michael J. Sullivan
Michael created one of my favorite series of all time, and it had the best ending I've seen in any series since Sanderson's Reckoners. His books are a pleasure to read, including the short stories which is how I found him in the first place.
National Novel Writing Month
This community is the best. They connect writers from all walks of life and all places in the world with the goal of writing 50k in one month. Sometimes the connections are online, but depending on the area they can also be in person. NaNoWriMo is the single reason I can happily attend a weekly writers group and how I found the amazing people in my critique group. I could never have grown into the writer I am today without it.
Writing Excuses Podcast
Little did I know that listening to others talk about writing would make me want to write.
Descriptive Thesaurus Collection
This is one of the best websites my critique group ever gave me. After complaining that I should 'show don't tell' more, particularly when dealing with someones emotions, they sent me this link. Having this resource has transformed my writing.
Aswiebe's Market List
This is simple, yet such an amazing time saver. Aswiebe has put together an excel sheet of every place she can find that is taking short story submissions. She includes what genres or topics the market is looking for, how much they pay per word, and a link to their website.