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Since it's Christmas Eve, and I doubt anyone's feeling too serious, I've dragged the Pulp-O-Mizer out from the archives. Merry Christmas!

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For today, something to play with - free online "magnetic" poetry!
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Ever wondered where a word comes from? Here's a handy Online Etymology Dictionary so you can look it up.
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This one's for poets - a free course at edX, The Art of Poetry. It's an archived course, which mean there isn't a class community, but does mean it can be done at your own pace.
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Today, a final podcast (or two) - I Should be Writing, which is aimed at beginners, and  I Should be Writing: Ditch Diggers, about the business of writing.
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A final gift idea, since there's only a week to go. The Creative Writing Coursebook is based on the University of East Anglia's creative writing courses, and is suitable for beginners and more advanced writers.
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Probably more useful to literary writers and poets than spec fic writers, the Poets and Writers Submission Calendar has handy links to competitions and awards.
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Today, we have an article for plotters, 21 Plot shapes and the Pros and Cons of Each over at InterGalactic Medicine Show.
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Here's another audio site, Tabletop Audio, ostensibly for role plays but would also be good background for writing to. This one has less Hogwarts, but does have locations such as a 1920s speakeasy, a royal salon, and a city under siege.
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For today, another gift idea: 642 Things To Write About. There's also a young writer's edition. Enough prompts to keep anyone going all year!
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Another one for more established writers tody - or at least those with a back catalogue. Prolific reprinter Deborah Walker's blog post on selling reprints - Part One and Part Two.
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Since some of the previous links have been for those relatively far along in their writing, this one's for beginners. FutureLearn has a free online course, Start Writing Fiction, starting on 9th January.
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Today, a podcast. The Odyssey Podcast, which is made up of 10-15 minute extracts from guest speakers at the Odyssey Writing Workshop.
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There probably isn't a speculative fiction writer out there who isn't already aware of Doug Smith's Foreign Markets List - but just in case one stumbles across this - go forth and submit reprints across the world!
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Today's entry is a website I love, because it's full of weird and wonderful things that show that sometimes truth really is stranger than fiction - http://www.atlasobscura.com/.
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For today, something fun and catchy: Weird Al "Word Crimes".
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Like a lot of writers, I'm a pantser not a plotter. I'd really like to learn how to plot though (I might get more finished that way). Writer Julie Frost pointed out this series of blog posts on exactly that - The Secrets of Story Structure. I haven't read them yet, but I've heard good things.
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Today's advent entry is another useful tool, for writers who want to design their own e-book covers. Because let's face it, while being able to hire someone to make art for you is great, sometimes it's not possible or affordable. Canva lets you do all the work yourself, and comes with handy tutorials. Mostly it's free, although some of the pre-designed layouts and custom bits have a (small) price tag. Obviously pay for any pictures you bring in from stock sites or the like.

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