A Writer's Bookshelf: Favourite Books on Writing

FAQs, Guidelines and other general disucssions concerning writing-open to all board membership.
Post Reply
User avatar
Posts: 300
Joined: 08 Feb 2004, 04:20
Gender: Female
Location: Utopia

A Writer's Bookshelf: Favourite Books on Writing

Post by Unna »

I started this thread so that we could share books we, personally, have found useful to the writing process. Please add yours!

My current favourites are the following:

The three books by Noah Lukeman:
The First Five Pages: A Writer's Guide to Staying Out of the Rejection Pile, (978-0684857435).
The Plot Thickens: 8 Ways to Bring Fiction to Life, (978-0312309282).
A Dash of Style: The Art and Mastery of Punctuation, (978-0393329803).

Noah Lukeman is an impossibly picky literary agent in New York City. He knows what good writing is and how to tell a story well, and he can help you do so. He's also a good writer himself - his books are enjoyable and even funny to read.

Another book with useful information delivered by way of a humourous via negativa is:
How Not to Write a Novel: 200 Classic Mistakes and How to Avoid Them--A Misstep-by-Misstep Guide, (978-0061357954).

You should do things because they're right. Not because gods say so. They might say something different another time. (Terry Pratchett, Small Gods)
User avatar
OBOD Ovate
Posts: 155
Joined: 03 Dec 2008, 06:18
Gender: Female
Location: New York

Re: A Writer's Bookshelf: Favourite Books on Writing

Post by HinduDruid »

Here are my faves:

Jeff Davis' The Journey from the Center of the Page -- This book is amazing. It incorporates yoga with writing to avoid blocks and to connect with the Muse. He also tells you to ritualize your writing time to create a sacred space for the Muse. This includes setting a two-fold intention that gets to the heart of why you are writing and what you want to do that session. I heard him speak once and he is just fantastic, hope to do a real seminar with him someday.

Stephen King's On Writing -- I am not a huge fan of his books, but his work on the process is perhaps THE best

Natalie Goldberg's Writing Down the Bones -- she is Buddhist and does a great job of giving writers exercises to help you through blocks. This is a fantastic, wonderful book, bu I just wouldn't recommend taking her seminars. I took one and it was horrible.

Anne Lamott's Bird by Bird -- so easy to read, great advice

Two books I have but have not yet read -- both look great, just not enough time in the day for everything :D
Francine Proses' Reading Like a Writer
Christopher Vogler's The Writer's Journey: Mythic structure for Writers
ImageImageImage Image

I enjoy defying description.

"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." --Soren Kierkegaard

“We are the music makers, and we are the dreamers of the dream. Wandering by lone sea breakers, and sitting by desolate streams. World losers and world forsakers, for whom the pale moon gleams. Yet we are movers and the shakers of the world forever it seems.” -- Arthur William Edgar O'Shaughnessy
User avatar
OBOD Ovate
Posts: 906
Joined: 18 Oct 2008, 09:16
Gender: Male
Location: Dún na nGall

Re: A Writer's Bookshelf: Favourite Books on Writing

Post by Dathi »

I have no claim of legitimacy to be posting here. I love the idea of writing, scribble a bit, dream a lot and tell great stories. But the diligence to stick at it eludes me.
Still, like many "wannabe" writers, I read, collect and enjoy books on writing.

Joseph Campbell: "Hero's Journey". "On Myth" etc are all great. There is plenty to enjoy at the Joseph Campbell Foundation: http://www.jcf.org/new/index.php

I see Christopher Vogler mentioned above. "The Writer's Journey". Also good, although his examples are not as timeless as JC's stuff. Dates the book a bit. Still, it's fun and would appeal to the "Tarot Heads" as he uses a fair bit of tarot-like illustrations. Much of this book is reproduced here: http://www.darkcloudpress.com/blog_file ... _Quest.pdf
The book's main web presence is here: http://www.thewritersjourney.com/

Christopher Booker: "The Seven Basic Plots, Why we tell stories" is a mighty tome (728 pages) and does what it says on the cover.

A couple of others...

Ronald Wolfe: Writing Comedy. (rev 2003) Hale

Richard Joseph: Bestsellers. Top Writer's Tell How. (1998) Summersdale

Seminar. September 2010: African Druids? Sangomas, Inyangas http://www.druidry.org/board/dhp/viewto ... =2&t=36777

2011 LI
Seminar. October 2012: Druids & Bushcraft viewtopic.php?f=326&t=41256
User avatar
Posts: 51
Joined: 25 Jan 2010, 01:07
Gender: Female
Location: Pennsylvania

Re: A Writer's Bookshelf: Favourite Books on Writing

Post by Rhiannon56 »

Some of my favorite books on writing include:

Les Edgerton's Finding Your Voice and Hooked.

Alice Orr's No More Rejections

Stephen King's On Writing

Terry Brooks' Sometimes the Magic Works.

I have a bunch more but these are some of my favorites. :yay:
Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the wind longs to play with your hair.
Kahlil Gibran

User avatar
Posts: 961
Joined: 20 Sep 2005, 18:38
Gender: Female
Location: NW Ohio

Re: A Writer's Bookshelf: Favourite Books on Writing

Post by LadyCelt »

I second HinduDruid's and Rhiannon56's mention of Stephen King's On Writing. :)
"I wasn't born to live someone else's idea of my life." ~ Carolan Ivey
Ord Brighideach: Image Image Image
Posts: 3
Joined: 09 Apr 2010, 08:39
Gender: Male

Re: A Writer's Bookshelf: Favourite Books on Writing

Post by kendricktamis »

My favorite is Les Miserables by Victor Hugo. I think a book you would enjoy is Darkhenge by Catherine Fisher. It's definitely a lesser known novel, about a boy whose sister is locked up in a different world.
Post Reply