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19 of the Best YouTube Channels for Writers

by | Feb 8, 2021

We write a lot about the best websites for writers, online writing courses, books on writing and lots more for writers of all kinds, but there’s a whole ‘nother realm of resources out there.

I’m talking about YouTube channels.

You may currently know YouTube only as that place you go to watch far too many cute animal videos rather than facing your writer’s block. (No judgment from me; have you seen the one with the tiny hedgehog birthday party?!)

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Looking for writers on YouTube? Here are 20 channels to check out

YouTube also contains a wealth of useful advice on everything from novel writing to marketing your work, and you’d be remiss if you didn’t tap into it.

I’ll make you a deal: For every animal video you watch, watch just one of the videos from the 20 awesome YouTube writing channels below. 

1. Self-Publishing School

Chandler Bolt’s Self-Publishing School channel aims to teach new writers how to publish and become bestsellers in their genres. It has a wide variety of topics like fiction writing tips, marketing strategies for authors, business building, writing prompts, book ideas, writing software, book cover design tips… You’ll be bombarded with hours and hours of content. Don’t forget to check out their podcast in there!

We recommend: How To Write A Book for Beginners: 21 Simple Steps To Published Author

2. Hannah Lee Kidder

Hannah Lee Kidder is an indie fiction writer, consultant, and YouTuber. She covers the craft of writing, self-publishing, and building your own career. Hannah finds engaging and entertaining ways to teach writing, like with her most popular series where she rewrites the Twilight series, pointing out pitfalls newbie writers can learn from (and giving much-needed attention to neglected characters—give Charlie a dishwasher!).

She has two heart-jerking short story collections currently available on Amazon, and is working on a fantasy duology she’ll self-publish as well! Follow along if you love witty humor, straight-to-the-point writing advice without the fluff, and videos that turn the “darker” side of being an author into light-hearted fun.

Be sure to check out: my favorite reason people HATE my book

3. The Creative Penn

From The New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Joanna Penn (who runs the writing website of the same name), this popular YouTube channel provides tips on self-publishing, marketing, the business of being a writer and more. 

Penn and other successful writers draw from their own experiences and life lessons to teach you everything you need to know to turn your writing dreams into reality. If you need tips on how to improve your craft, posts like Writing In The Dark. Horror Writing Tips With Tim Waggoner shows she’s got you covered there, too.

Be sure to check out: From Chaos to Creativity: Productivity For Writers With Jessie Kwak 

4. Katytastic

Book reviewer and aspiring author Kat O’Keefe’s YouTube channel is chock full of writing videos with everything from micro advice like word choices to macro advice like world-building.

Her upbeat personality and sense of humor make every lesson feel fun, so it’ll be easy to learn from the wisdom she shares about her own unique writing process.

If you’re a NaNoWriMo participant, she’s got a few playlists geared towards how to survive (and win) that challenge. The videos are older now, but they still offer tons of value.

Be sure to check out: How I Write a Rough Draft 

5. Vivien Reis

This YA sci-fi writer, whose debut novel “The Elysian Prophecy” was published in 2018, is a great resource for newbie novel writers trying to make sense of the whole overwhelming process.

Her videos discuss challenges like how to divide your story into chapters, how to choose the right editor and how to find beta readers. Her down-to-earth, imperfections-included style (hello, intruding dogs!) make you feel like you’re video chatting with a friend.

Be sure to check out: Writing Travel Scenes in Your Novel  

6. bookishpixie

Gabe  is a writer  who draws from experience as a YA author, freelance editor and assistant editor.

He delivers some great advice in three- to five-minute videos on topics like the writing life, sending out queries and editing your work, all delivered in a positive and encouraging (yet totally honest) voice.

Be sure to check out: How to Choose Scene Perspective   

7. Rachael Stephen

Scottish novelist and self-described “hellbitch,” Stephen is funny, quirky and offers non-filtered advice that’s a lovely combination of frank and empathetic. Plus, her tips are super-useful (see her The Plot Embryo playlist  for tips that make a big, scary process seem entirely doable).

She’s kind of like that accountability buddy who nods understandingly when you talk about the trouble you’re having with writer’s block, then delivers the tail-kicking you need to get moving again.

Be sure to check out: the daily rituals of great writers 

8. Robert McKee

Screenwriting guru and “story doctor” McKee’s former students include Academy Award Winners, Emmy Award Winners and Writers of Guild of America Winners numbering in the hundreds (nominees number in the thousands).

His renowned seminars on the art of storytelling were even portrayed in the film “Adaptation.” But you don’t need to be a screenwriter to learn from him; his advice on story structure and design applies to literature, too.

As bestseller Steven Pressfield has said, “McKee is not only the best teacher of writing I’ve ever had, but the best teacher of anything.”

Don’t just visit McKee’s own YouTube channel, but also browse the plethora of great videos featuring him on other channels to get the most from his wisdom.

Be sure to check out: Dialogue: The Hidden Story in Subtext 

9. Chris Fox

You know the bestselling author of books like “5,000 Words Per Hour” and “Write to Market: Deliver a Book That Sells” knows how to get the job done. And in his YouTube videos, Fox delves into how you can become a productive and business-minded writer yourself. 

Whether you’re editing your writing, prepping to launch or just need some motivation, he’ll help you get your work out the door and into the hands of an audience that will appreciate it.

Be sure to check out: Quick Tip: How to Instantly Improve Your Prose  

10. Mark Dawson 

As a USA Today  bestselling author with more than 40 books published, Dawson offers a unique behind-the-scenes look at what it’s like to self-publish a book.

What’s unique about this channel is its inclusion of other indie authors who’ve empowered their careers through social media advertising, so you’ll hear from a range of experts offering tried-and-true methods to help you succeed as a self-published author. Dawson and others talk about things like running an indie author business, the cost of self-publishing and whether you should write a sequel or series, all with an approachable, refreshing genuineness that reminds us successful authors really are just like us.

Be sure to check out: How to Print Your Book All Over the World 

11. Kristen Martin

Those of you pursuing writing while holding down a day job will find a kindred spirit in Martin, who wrote YA, sci-fi and fantasy novels while also working full-time in the supply chain industry before transitioning to being a full-time author. (How’s that for a varied career?)

In addition to providing tons of useful tips on how to write, market and self-publish your book, she also gives plenty of peeks into her real life that are both inspiring and comforting to those of us also trying to “do it all.”

Be sure to check out: The NEW Way to OUTLINE Your Book 💡 STEP-BY-STEP STORYBOARD 

12. ShaelinWrites

Only in her early 20s,  creative writing student Shaelin Bishop has written 10 novels and garnered a following on YouTube that regularly lands on her on lists alongside bigger-name vloggers.

Her videos are casual and don’t feel scripted; they’re also a bit on the long side (averaging 10-25 minutes while other vloggers’ are closer to 5-10). But writers of all ages will appreciate her candor and realness, whether she’s discussing her outlining process or flipping out over getting her first physical copy of her book.

Be sure to check out: Writing Experimental Fiction | Using Form in Your Writing  

13. WordNerds

With eight “WordNerds” producing more than 1,500 videos to date, this channel has a little bit of everything.

Various topics are posted on different days of the week, so you’ll find everything from inspiration to interviews to book recommendations to writing tips. Follow your favorite vloggers’ updates or peruse them all; it’s sort of like a writers’ roundtable whose sessions you can pop into at any time.

Be sure to check out: So, You Want to Write an Immortal?  

14. J.P. Beaubien

As a member of the Knoxville Writers’ Guild and author of the time travel fiction series “Aeon Legion,” J.P. Beaubien imparts crucial advice to writers by pointing out what not to do.

Beaubien’s Terrible Writing Advice channel is filled with punchy videos that are packed with creativity, great advice and a touch of sarcasm. If you’re into animation, then you’ll love these illustrated videos that feature characters acting out his lessons. He covers topics like character development, nailing post apocalyptic plots and everything in between.

Be sure to check out: Traditional Vs Self Publishing 

15. Sarah Turner Agency

Full-time freelance copywriter Sarah Turner’s YouTube channel shares advice on how you can free yourself from your 9-to-5 by betting on your writing chops. 

Whether you’d like to learn how to get clients, write productively or find a freelance writing niche, Turner’s step-by-step guidance is sure to help you break into self-employment. Plus, she offers a free course playlist on how to earn six figures in six months. 

Be sure to check out: The FIRST Step To Becoming A Freelance Copywriter ✍️

16. Tamara Woods

YouTuber Tamara Woods is a writer of poetry, blogs and more. She uses her channel to host writing sprints anyone can join, as well as dive deeper into writing topics like grammar, NaNoWriMo, blogging, being an authorpreneur, productivity and books.

If you’ve been looking for an interactive channel to inspire your creativity, Woods and her writing workshops, tips and creative approach to getting the job done (like this coffee shop simulation!) might be what you’re looking for. 

Be sure to check out: Writers Workshop Season 3 Episode 1: Author Business Plan

17. Hello Future Me

Self-proclaimed nerd, Tolkien and bread connoisseur Tim Hickson leads this YouTube channel for writers, where he “talks about The Last Airbender probably a little too much.” If you’re a fantasy and sci-fi writer, you’ll enjoy Hickson’s lessons on word-building, storytelling and writing fight scenes, all through the lens of popular fantasy fiction. 

Be sure to check out: Writing Great Side Characters | Avatar: The Last Airbender

18. BooksAndBigHair

Need a new booktuber to follow? Check out India Hill Brown, “a girl who loves to read and write,” and author of ‘The Forgotten Girl’ and ‘The Drowned Girl.’ 

On her Youtube channel, she shares videos about book hauls, reviews and unboxings, and even 24-hour read-a-thons. However, you’ll also learn how to land a literary agent and set writing goals, plus how to revise a novel through videos where she uses her work and author journey as an example.  

Be sure to check out: WRITING AND MOM VLOG | A Day in the Life of a New Mom and Author!

19. Alexa Donne

This traditionally published YA author of three sci-fi and thriller books uses her YouTube Channel to offer insight into writing, the YA genre and the publishing industry. She publishes two to three new videos per week, so you’ll find plenty of content to help you grow as a writer.

On Donne’s channel, you’ll  find drafting and editing vlogs, interviews with authors, book reviews, book tropes (good and bad), advice about querying and beyond. Plus, if you’ve needed some harsh writing advice to get your head in the game, you’re in the right place. 

Be sure to check out: How To Write A Fiction Book Proposal

20. Overly Sarcastic Productions

Learning is fun — especially when you’re learning about classic and not-so-classic myths and literature and major historical events through engaging animated videos. Oh, and the sarcastic part? That’s the tone of the videos you can expect.

While informative and easy-to-follow, this YouTube channel can get pretty gory, as it depicts violence, assault, murder and NSFW language in its lessons. In fact, it warns: “Treat us as a TV-14 show and don’t show us to your kids.” However, if you’re a writer interested in the right way to depict history and myths, this channel is worth hiding out in a closet to watch it.

Be sure to check out: Trope Talk: Tragedy

This is an updated version of a story that was previously published. We update our posts as often as possible to ensure they’re useful for our readers.

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