by Cindy R. Williams
If your a writer, you have books on your shelf about writing. Some may be crisp and almost new, covered with a light layer of dust, others may be dog-eared and marked with tons of post-its.
Here are some books, just some--or this blog would be tooooooooo long--that I have on my shelf for reference.
Beginning Writer's Answer Book, edited by Jane Friedman. The entire book is a list of questions about writing, followed by answers. Good stuff, here.
Thanks, But This Isn't For Us, A (Sort of) Compassionate Guide to Why Your Writing is Being Rejected, by Jessica Page Morrell To quote the book, "This book . . . written by a Demon of Harsh Reality and meant as a hefty dose of reality along with encouragement to keep trying, to keep learning. Because writing is a craft and it can be learned." It is just that. It tells it like it is, and sometimes a bit crudely.
Writing Tools--50 Essential Strategies For Every Writer by Roy Peter Clark. This book has sections like NUTS AND BOLTS, with chapters like; Begin sentences with subjects and verbs, Order words for emphasis, Activate your verbs, Be passive-aggressive, Watch those adverbs. Take it easy on the -ings, Feat not the long sentence, Cut big, then small. It is a great study.
I saved my favorite, well worn book on writing, for last. Stephen King On Writing, A Memoir of the Craft. Whether your a Stephen King fan or not, he knows how to tell a compelling story on paper that translates to the big screen. I had heard about the book from a number of accomplished writers so decided I better buy it. It lives up to its reputation. He shares his writing journey and knowledge with forthright honesty. Yes, he has a bit of challenge thinking of words to replace swear words, but the book is a goldmine in what works. Even the picture on the front cover gives me hope. You see Stephen King, writing by hand, rocking back in a rolling chair, feet on his desk, dog under his legs, papers, reference books, notebooks and memorabilia scattered all around. A wall with various clippings and pictures etc. The picture alone tells so much. He has a dedicated writing space. He must spend a great amount of time there if his dog likes to lay there. You can tell he has is deep in thought, and working hard in-spite of his lounging position. For an author as famous as he is, his writing place is normal. For an author as successful as he is, he still puts in the long hours.