Books For Writers
Posted 04 August 2012 - 11:42 AM
The Elements of Style - by William Strunk and E.B. White
On Writing Well - by William Zinsser
Reading Like a Writer - by Francine Prose
The Writer's Art - by James J. Kilpatrick
and then, also:
Fowler's Modern English Usage - updated by R.W. Burchfield
Funk & Wagnalls Standard Handbook of Synonyms, Antonyms, and Prepositions
Modern American Usage: A Guide - by Wilson Follett
New Rhyming Dictionary and Poets Handbook - by Burges Johnson
What books have specifically encouraged you in writing? Or what books, if any, have you found essential or indispensable as tools when you write? What am I still missing?
Posted 05 August 2012 - 11:48 PM
Stanley Fish's How to Write a Sentence is interesting, though I didn't finish it. I think he has some good ideas about how to teach writing.
Some more non-technical books that I've appreciated are Anne Lamott's Bird by Bird, which is often mentioned but is really good, and Brenda Ueland's If You Want to Write, which I read in college but have not revisited, so don't know if I'd still recommend it (it's more of a 'rah rah you can do it' book, but it was written in 1938, so it's not too self-help-y). I also really like Xiaoming Li's "Good Writing" In Cross-Cultural Context, which is a bit unusual in that it is about how expert high school writing teachers from the US and China conceive of good writing, but it's really well written and interesting.
Posted 04 September 2012 - 01:32 PM
Nope, not outside the general genre of your favorite or most useful books on the art of writing itself. More specific books about writing particular things like fiction or even poetry fit in this category. Thanks for the suggestion.
Are you interested in any specific genre? Most of my books are about writing fiction. Gotham Writers Workshop Writing Fiction: The Practical Guide from New York's Acclaimed Creative Writing School is a good one.
Posted 04 September 2012 - 01:59 PM
The Writing Life - Annie Dillard
Walking on Water - Madeleine L'Engle
Steering the Craft - Ursula LeGuin
The Artist's Way - Julia Cameron
Art & Fear - Ted Orland and David Bayles
Posted 25 July 2013 - 11:16 AM
Here's a question - is it even possible to obtain Samuel Johnson's 1755 A Dictionary of the English Language that is:
1) in print
2) not abridged or reduced to "selections" or an anthology
3) available for purchase anywhere?
I've been hunting on Amazon and Google and it seems that everyone just wants to sell me CDs or e-book downloads or abridged versions. I don't want CDs or downloads. I don't want a goddamn abridged version. I want the complete and unabridged Dr. Johnson's Dictionary printed on paper in the form of a real book. If I have to save extra $ for a while first to get it, I will. But from where?
Posted 24 October 2013 - 12:38 PM
I've been reading Unstuck by Jane Anne Straw and though it is a little self-help-y (OK, a lot self-help-y at times), I like the practical suggestions it offers, like how to plan times for writing and starting small (eg committing to writing for 15 minutes a day -- no longer -- to start).