Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Curl up with a good (writing) book


I like to think that most of us are getting at least a few days off at the end of the year. (And if not, that probably means that you're working in a medical field or are a cop or soldier... THANK YOU!) So, what are we going to do with our time off? READ, of course!

Yesterday's Pimp My Novel Guest Post by Randy Susan Meyers was a great round-up of eighteen (yes, 18) books on writing. This post inspired me to pick up my copy of Betsy Lerner's The Forest for the Trees which I bought months ago but never started, and it's exactly as awesome as Randy says it is. "Instant shrink for writers" indeed!

I would also add Carolyn See's Making a Literary Life to the list -- it's got great advice on networking and self-promotion, but also it's about self-motivation, self-encouragement, and how to write that second book. And third. And fourth. It's not a craft book; it's not about how to write, it's about how to be a writer.

I also need to finish Walter Mosley's This Year You Write Your Novel. "Let the lawn get shaggy and the paint peel from the walls..."

Is there a writing book you love that didn't make the PMN guest post list? Tell us about it! My to-read stack is only three feet high, I'm sure I can squeeze another book in there before it topples...

10 comments:

  1. Ray Bradbury's Zen in the Art of Writing. Encouraging, enthusiastic, but uncompromising about the work it takes to write well. Also, it's short enough to read in one afternoon, and reread at your leisure.

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  2. I really want to Read Stephen King's book! Must make a mental note of that.

    I really enjoyed Donald Maass's Writing the Breakout Novel work book! It helped me LOADS!!!

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  3. Medical field guy here <------ so, I get almost no time off since I work in a doctor's office lol. Oh well.

    As for the writing book, I just picked up a book the other day called "The Writer's Guide to Character Traits." I think it's a great resource and have really enjoyed having it, in preparation of setting up new characters for my next novel.

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  4. I guess Stephen King's book is my favorite. I also loved GMC: Goal, Motivation, and Conflict back when I was first starting out...but that book appears to have become obsolete now.

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  5. Stephen King's ON WRITING

    Noah Lukeman's THE FIRST FIVE PAGES

    BULLIES, BASTARDS, AND BITCHES (don't remember the author)

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  6. My favorite writing book is Stephen King's, On Writing (which seems to be a popular one in the comments!) :-)

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  7. Oh god, my to read stack grows daily! I loved Noah Lukeman's "The First Five Pages and oh.. I see that has already been mentioned. Well I also liked Stephen King's... hang on, that got mention too. I got nothin then. THey were my favs!

    Have a wonderful Christmas Carrie. Thanks for all the thought provoking posts this year :)

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  8. I actually don't like to read too many "writers on writing" books. Bird by Bird annoyed me, though I know many people just love it. I do like The Writer's Life by Annie Dillard. I have Writing Down the Bones waiting for me at the library. One of my students said it was very inspiring to her, so I figured I'd read it.

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  9. Oh--I just saw that the PMN post mentioned an Elizabeth Lyon book. When my co-writer and I were crafting our non-fiction book proposal, we got a lot of use out of Non-Fiction Book Proposals Anyone Can Write. It's a bit dated now, as it was published in 2002, but we eventually got an agent and a book deal, so it did its job!

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  10. Well, those are all writing books I was unaware of. Thank you!

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