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Tuesday, August 7th, 2012 by | Filed Under: Cool Sites

I always wanted to be a writer. When I was little, I told my grandmother I was going to be a journalist and carried around a tiny notebook and interviewed my family members. When I was eleven or so I started writing poetry, and by the time I graduated high school my goal was to go into creative writing and write books for a living. Right about the same time my life took a major detour away from that plan – but I still wrote creatively for myself.

When I went back to school, I had to start writing academically (in addition to finding fun sites to write up and share with you), and that creative writing got put on the back burner. Now that I’m in my last year of undergrad, and I’ve left mostly with general education classes, the itch to write creatively has been flaring up – although it’s been full of stops and starts. So, I’ve been looking for ways to start practicing my creative writing in small doses. A friend from a writing encouragement group I’m in suggested I give this site a try, and once I did, I knew I had to share it with you!

To Sign Up for your free account all you have to do is click the Sign Up button and make a decision. You can choose to connect with Facebook or Twitter, or use your e-mail address. I used the Facebook option, because it’s easier for me. If you go the Facebook route you’ll need to click the Facebook button, approve the app, and then create a password when prompted (as well as provide your birth date), then click the the box for the Terms of Service, and click the Sign Up button. I don’t use Twitter, but I’m going to guess it is the same as the Facebook process.

Once you’ve confirmed your account and are logged in it will suggest you invite your friends, I always skip this. Instead, I headed up to the top of the page and clicked Edit My Profile and then the Q & A tab, which offers up some questions for you to answer about yourself. The profile section also lets you organize your bookshelf on the site, and manage the social media sites you are connected to.

After you’ve updated your profile you have two options of things to do on the site. You can read or you can write. The navigation bar is divided between these two activities, with the reading and forum options on the light grey half and the writing options on the dark grey half. Before getting started in either section I’d suggest checking out the FAQ.. I didn’t, and it would have answered a lot of the questions that I had trying to acquaint myself with the site. 

Reading – if you want to read other people’s writing I’d suggest starting on the Figment Library page and either selecting a story featured there or using the handy search engine field. You can type a keyword into it or you can leave it blank just select a genre category from the drop down box to see what titles are under that category. Because the entries are all short, you can read many things (it will even list the average time it takes to read it) on one visit. Like the entry you’re reading? Well, you can share it over Facebook, Twitter, e-mail it, heart it, comment on it, and even review it. You can also flag inappropriate posts, too. 

Writing – this is what I came here for! Go to the My Desk section and click the Create Something New button. Give your writing a working title and you’ll be whisked away to the text box where you can start writing.  In need of some help getting started? Why not try to write something for one of the contests? Or head to the forum and check out the threads there for ideas (like the Writing Scraps thread). Best of all you can keep your writing private, share it with only the people you allow, or make it public. There’s no minimum or maximum word count either. You’re in complete control! 

 Whether you’re an avid reader or a writer you’ll find plenty do at Figment, so go get started today!


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