Wonderful Writing Books Recommended by Your Peers

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

This is the last of my posts about the survey I did at the end of 2008 on the best and worst things for writers. This question about best books got a huge response from writers because writers love books, and we seem to especially love books about writing. The problem with this is there are so many writing books on the shelves; and if you talk to five or your writing friends, you will get five different recommendations for the book that changed the way your friend thinks about writing. The book I always recommend is On Writing by Stephen King, which I was glad to see make the list of "Best Writing Books" and recommended by someone besides just me. And don't worry, if you don't like horror novels, his writing book is completely different, funny, and full of practical advice you can start using today. But anyway, here are some more books that writers recommended:
**Write Right by Jan Venolia "is everything you need to know about punctuation, grammar and style in an easy to take-along book."

**What It Is by Lynda Barry

**Dare to Be a Great Writer by Leonard Bishop

**Plain English Handbook by J. Martyn & Anna Kathleen Walsh, copyright 1959
**Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott

**Word Painting by Rebecca McClanahan "for inspiration and to reboot"

**Business & Legal Forms for Authors & Self-Publishers by Tad Crawford. "If I could only have one book relating to writing in my library, it would have to be this one. It literally 'saved' me when I was trying to negotiate my first contract. It explained what the terms meant, which ones to make sure I deleted from my contract (or changed) and which ones were 'standard' to the industry so I didn't waste time, energy, and mental stress over things that I wouldn't be able to get changed. I recommend this book for EVERY serious writer's library!"

**On Writing Well by William Zinsser
**On Writing by Stephen King
Happy reading and happy writing! (add one of your own if you want. . .)
Margo Dill


T.G. Mathis said...

One of my favorites was Zen in the Art of Writing by Ray Bradbury.

Thank you so much for this blog entry, it's really helpful for me.

Gutsy Living said...

New to your blog. Any specific memoir writing books anyone?

Anonymous said...

How did The Elements of Style not make your list?

Margo Dill said...

Well, THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE just made the list! I surveyed about 50 writers, some didn't answer this question, and of the ones that did, these were the writing books that were recommended. I am glad that you mentioned it because I know many people rely on Strunk and White!

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