Books on writingAn incomplete, unscientific, totally biased list of books on writing.
You're looking at a work in progress. I've read, enjoyed, and used some of these. Others landed on my to-be-read list because writers whose judgment I respect recommended them.
Includes inspirational, nuts and bolts, and reference works. I recommend reading reference books--you'd be amazed what you never knew you were doing wrong. I was.
I haven't listed all of each writer's books, only my favorite or the most well known. If one of these books works for you, odds are the author has written more.
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Allen, David, Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity; (Penguin Books; ISBN: 0142000280, $15.00). [Yes, this is a book on organization, not writing. Sometimes organization is what we need!]
Atchity, Kenneth J. A Writer's Time: Making the Time to Write (W.W. Norton & Company; ISBN: 0393312631, $14.95).
Benedict, Elizabeth, The Joy of Writing Sex, revised edition (Owl Books; ISBN: 0805069933, $14.00). [A lot of fun to read on airplanes.]
Block, Lawrence, Telling Lies for Fun and Profit (William Morrow & Co; ISBN: 0688132286, $13.00).
Browne, Renni, and Dave King, Self-Editing for Fiction Writers (HarperCollins (paper); ISBN: 0062720465, $14.00).
Burroway, Janet, Writing Fiction : A Guide to Narrative Craft (Addison-Wesley Pub. Co.; ISBN: 0321026896, $44.00).
Camenson, Blythe, et al., Your Novel Proposal : From Creation to Contract : The Complete Guide to Writing Query Letters, Synopses and Proposals for Agents and Editors (Writers Digest Books; ISBN: 0898798752, $18.99).
Cameron, Julia, The Artist's Way : A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity (J P Tarcher; ISBN: 0874776945, $15.95).
Dillard, Annie, The Writing Life (Harperperennial Library; ISBN: 0060919884, $11.00).
Edelstein, Scott, Manuscript Submission (Writers Digest Books; ISBN: 089879398X, $14.00).
Ephron, Hallie, Writing and Selling Your Mystery Novel: How to Knock 'Em Dead with Style. (Writer's Digest Books; ISBN: 1582973768, $16.99).
Gardner, John, The Art of Fiction : Notes on Craft for Young Writers (Vintage Books; ISBN: 0679734031, $12.00).
Goldberg, Natalie. Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within (Shambhala Publications, $7.00)
Goldstein, Norm et al., The Associated Press Stylebook and Briefing on Media Law (Perseus Books; ISBN: 0738203084, $16.50).
Grafton, Sue, Writing Mysteries (Writers Digest Books; ISBN: 1582971021) $16.99).
Hale, Constance, Sin and Syntax : How to Craft Wickedly Effective Prose (Broadway Books; ISBN: 0767903099, $11.95).
Hayden, G. Miki, Writing the Mystery: A Start to Finish Guide for Both Novice and Professional. (Intrigue Press; ISBN: 1890768367; $18.95).
Kelner, Steven P., Jr., Motivating Your Writing, (University Press of New England, ISBN: 1584654538, $19.95). [See also http://www.motivateyourwriting.com/ ]
King, Stephen, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft (Pocket Books; ISBN: 0671024256, $14.95).
Lamott, Anne. Bird by Bird. (Anchor; ISBN: 0385480016, $12.95)
Lawler, Jennifer, Dojo Wisdom for Writers, (Penguin Books; ISBN: 0142196312, $13.00).
Lukeman, Noah T., The First Five Pages: A Writer's Guide to Staying Out of the Rejection Pile (Fireside; ISBN: 068485743X, $11.00).
Lynn, Mary, Every Page Perfect : A Full-Size Writer's Manual for Manuscript Format and Submission Protocol (Toad Hall Inc; ISBN: 096374982X, $14.95).
Maass, Donald, The Career Novelist, (Heinemann, ISBN: 0435086936, $15.95).
Maass, Donald, Writing the Breakout Novel, (Writer's Digest Books, ISBN: 158297182X, $16.99).
McKee, Robert, Story: Substance, Structure, Style and The Principles of Screenwriting (Regan Books; ISBN: 0060391685, $35.00).
Mundis, Jerrold, Break Writer's Block Now! (St. Martin's Press, ISBN: 0312053940, $13.95). [Out of print. Available, while it lasts, at http://www.lawrenceblock.com )
Neri, Kris, Writing Killer Mysteries (DVD). (T2G Productions, $89.99).
Norville, Barbara, Writing the Modern Mystery (ASIN: 0898795230; out of print).
Pickard, Nancy, and Lynn Lott. Seven Steps on the Writer's Path: The Journey from Frustration to Fulfillment. (Random House; ISBN: 034545524X, 24.95).
Roerden, Chris, Don't Murder Your Mystery. (Bella Rosa Books; ISBN: 1933523131; $17.95).
Skillin, Marjorie E. and Robert Malcolm Gay. Words into Type. (Pearson PTP; ISBN: 0139642625, $39.95).
Stein, Sol, Stein on Writing (Griffin Trade Paperback; ISBN: 0312254210, $14.95).
Strunk, William, The Elements of Style (Allyn & Bacon; ISBN: 020530902X, $7.95).
University of Chicago Press, The Chicago Manual of Style : The Essential Guide for Writers, Editors, and Publishers (University of Chicago Press ); ISBN: 0226104036, $55.00).
Vogler, Christopher, The Writer's Journey : Mythic Structure for Writers (Michael Wiese Productions; ISBN: 0941188701, $22.96).
Waldman, Mark Robert, ed., The Spirit of Writing : Classic and Contemporary Essays Celebrating the Writing Life (J P Tarcher; ISBN: 1585421278, $15.95).
Zinsser, William Knowlton, On Writing Well: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction (Harperreference; ISBN: 0062735233, $14.00).