Monday, January 09, 2012

Recommendations for new writers

Awhile back I wrote something up for new writers, but I can't find it so I'm retyping it. I found these books/resources really, really helpful when I started writing.

Things to read when you are learning to write:

  • Bird by Bird, by Anne Lamott. Buy this book now. You can try to wheedle a copy out of another writer, but I guarantee they won't give it up.
  • On Writing, by Stephen King. Most of it is autobiographical, but several people swear by it so I stuck it on this list.
  • In the Palm of Your Hand: The Poet's Portable Workshop, by Steve Kowitt. Read this if you're into poetry.
  • The Elements of Style, by William Strunk Jr. & E. B. White. Classic. Goes without saying.
  • Story Engineering by Larry Brooks. This saved my latest novel.

Things to read if you want to go indie:
  • Becoming an Indie Author, by Zoe Winters.


S.M. Boyce said...

I'll check out Bird by Bird, because I've never heard of it before. Thanks for the tip.

I think the appeal of King's novel is more so the second part, where he talks about a what writers should keep in their "toolbox." His tips and discussions are tools to refining your writing, and he does offer comments that stick with you. If you haven't read it, I'd recommend you just skip ahead to the second part. I didn't even finish the first part (terrible, terrible, I know...).

Good list!

-S.M. Boyce
Author of The Grimoire: Lichgates
When Kara opens the Grimoire, she’s thrown into a beautiful world full of terrifying things. There is no going back.
Click here to read the first chapter for free.

Laura E. Bradford said...

Go read Bird by Bird! No problem, I absolutely love it.

I read King's book awhile back, and while it has some good advice for writers, Bird by Bird really resonated with me a lot more. A lot of what she wrote, about just getting a draft down and plot treatments to help with editing, really helped my writing.

BobbieNoSocks said...

Just found your blog. I just self published my first novel on Kindle and Amazon and was looking for some guidance. Great List. Thanks for the recommendations... I'll keep following.

Laura E. Bradford said...