Thursday, October 22, 2009

More to Read

The post mentioning Stephen King's ON WRITING drew a lot of positive feedback in the comments and the emails, so I thought I would throw out a few other books that help me throughout my writing process.

One great resource is THE 3 A.M. EPIPHANY by Brian Kiteley. It's a book that is loaded with exercises to try and get you thinking outside the box. Kitely is a creative writing prof at the University of Denver, and the thing this helped me a lot with is writing tighter.

Struggle with dialogue? Then you gotta read LUSH LIFE by Richard Price. It's not a help book, but he's a master of writing dialogue. Reading that book showed me ways to use dialogue differently, ways to use different voices and it just plain helped me in that department. Besides, it's a damn good book.

One of your characters missing something? Check out WRITER'S GUIDE TO CHARACTER TRAITS by Linda Edelstein. This book won't tell you a better way to write characters, but it will show you how to give them more layers. This book helped me make my characters seem more realistic.

Those are just a few. Of course, one of my tips for any kind of writer is to read, read, read. Then take a nap, write and read some more.

Anybody else have some good resources that helped you in your writing? Share them in the comments for everybody. Go on. Don't be bashful.


  1. My two absolute favorites:

    Making Shapely Fiction (Jerome Stern)
    What If? (Anne Bernays & Pamela Painter)

    They both offer tons of exercises and insights.

  2. Thanks, Sara. I'll have to check those out!

  3. I loved The Complete Handbook of Novel Writing from Writer's Digest and 20 Master Plots and how to build them by Ronald Tobias. I also heard Bird by Bird was great but I haven't read it yet. Thanks for the recomendations.
    I make a point to read debut novels to see what's selling.
    Thanks for sharing your progress with us, I really enjoyed reading it. It made me feel a little better about my own struggles.