Hello everyone, I hope you’ve been doing well!
I recently bought a couple of writing books to help improve my writing, and I thought, why not talk about those new books, as well as the ones I already have?
I think that all these books can be useful, but you don’t necessarily need to buy all of these books. My advice would be to find a book that sounds useful to you, then read an excerpt to see if the author’s style clicks with you before buying the book. If the book that’s supposed to help you become a better writer can’t explain the concepts your having issues with in terms which make sense to you, then it really isn’t going to be helpful in the long term. I don’t want you to waste your money on books you aren’t going to use, which is why I also include specific concepts each book (that I’ve fully read and used) has helped me with. That way if you are also struggling with it, maybe that’s the book for you!
As I’ve rambled on enough, here are the writing books in my collection.
The following books in this section I all got off of Amazon. I have the Paper Hearts series on my Kindle though, instead of a physical copy.
The Paper Hearts by Beth Revis
The first technical writing book I started out with was Paper Hearts, Volume 1: Some Writing Advice. I believe Beth Revis had a book come out around early 2016 (which wasn’t this one), so Booktuber’s talking about her book. I looked into her stuff more, and found her Paper Hearts series, which starts with this first book, that focuses on the technical aspect of writing. Her plot chart is really useful in figuring out the flow of your story, and I highly recommend this book. Beth Revis also does a good job of teaching you a lot about writing, but keeping it interesting and using plenty of examples to demonstrate her points.
I also have the other books, Paper Hearts, Volume 2: Some Publishing Advice and Paper Hearts, Volume 3: Some Marketing Advice but I haven’t used them quite yet, but I hope I will soon!
Writing Tools: 55 Essential Strategies for Every Writer by Roy Peter Clark
This is another book that focuses on the technical aspect of writing, but also with how you approach your writing. The book is divided into five sections:
- Nuts and Bolts– The technical part of writing
- Special Effects– How to add “a little something more” to your writing to make it exciting
- Blueprints- Ways to plan out and organize your writing
- Useful Habits– How to motivate yourself and keep writing quality work consistently
- Bonus Tools– Other strategies to keep in mind to improve your writing
Writing Tools helped me a lot with realizing how many filler words I use in my writing, and paying more attention to that when editing my writing. I would recommend it if you only are able to invest in one book for everything, as this covers both the technical aspect, as well as the more personal aspect of writing.
It Was the Best of Sentences, It Was the Worst of Sentences: A Writers Guide to Crafting Killer Sentences by June Casagrande
This is a book that focuses only on the technical aspect of writing, specifically sentence structure. If you struggle a lot with constructing sentences that help maintain the flow of your story, or you want to improve on this specific aspect of your writing, this book is the one for you. It was the Best of Sentences is what helped me realize how passive my writing could be, and it’s another issue I look out for when editing.
On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King
This is a combination of a autobiography of Stephen King’s life and his journey to becoming a writer, a technical writing book, and writing advice that you would get from a mentor. I just started reading it recently, and I’ve enjoyed reading Stephen King’s journey to becoming a writer. However, since I haven’t gotten any further into the book, I don’t have any opinions on the other aspects of the book. It’s one of those books that comes highly recommended from other writer’s in the industry, and I would say that if you’re interested in becoming a career author, or even if you just love Stephen King’s work, this would be a good read for you.
Now, I recently bought a couple more writing books that I’ve heard are useful, so I haven’t had a chance to read them yet, but I want to mention them, as they are staples when it comes to technical writing books. These books I bought at Barnes and Noble, which is how I ended up with the illustrated version of The Elements of Style as opposed to the regular version.
The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr., and E.B. White (I have the illustrated version, so it’s illustrated by Maira Kalman).
This is one of the most well known writing books when it comes to the technical aspect of writing. It covers everything from sentence structure, to commonly misused words, grammar and everything in between. If you need something that is a quick reference guide for writing, this is the book for you.
Save the Cat! Writes a Novel: The Last Book on Novel Writing You’ll Ever Need by Jessica Brody
Save the Cat! Writes a Novel is based off of the Save the Cat! The Last Book You’ll Ever Need on Screenwriting, and it takes you through the entire process of writing a novel, from the formation of the idea, to planning, word count, and more. I’ve heard this book recommended both from the writing communities on Youtube and Instagram, so I decided to try it out. I’ll let you know how it goes, once I actually get into the book.
I hope you found this helpful! If you have any great suggestions for writing books or any other resources, feel free to share!
Thank you for reading and I will see you next week with a new post!
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