Zillions of Good Books About
Writing & The Writing Process

Almost every book listed below is in my own
personal library, so if you have a question about
content or helpfulness, please don't hesitate to ask.
Craft & Technique
20 Master Plots (And How To Build Them) - Ronald B. Tobias
45 Master Characters: Mythic Models for Creating Original Characters -
Victoria Schmidt
A Passion for Narrative -
Jack Hodgins
Art of Compelling Fiction: How to Write a Page-Turner -
Christopher T. Leland
Art of Fiction -
David Lodge
Art of Fiction: Notes on Craft for Young Writers -
John Gardner
Becoming A Writer -
Dorothea Brande
Beginnings, Middles & Ends -
Nancy Kress
Building Fiction: How to Develop Plot and Structure -
Jesse Lee Kercheval
Characters and Viewpoint -
Orson Scott Card
Conflict, Action & Suspense -
William Noble
Creating Characters: How to Build Story People -
Dwight V. Swain
Dialogue: Techniques & Exercises for Crafting Effective Dialogue -
Gloria Kempton
Dialogue -
Lewis Turco
Dynamic Characters: How to Create Personalities that Keep Readers Captivated -
Nancy Kress
Fiction Writer's Workshop: The Key Elements -
Josip Novakovich
Finding Your Writer's Voice: A Guide to Creative Fiction -
Thaisa Frank & Dorothy Wall
First Five Pages: A Writer's Guide to Staying Out of the Rejection Pile -
Noah Lukeman
From Where You Dream: The Process of Writing Fiction - Robert Olen Butler
Guide to Fiction Writing -
Phyllis A. Whitney
How Fiction Works: The Last Word on Writing Fiction, from Basics to the Fine Points -
Oakley Hall
Lessons From a Lifetime of Writing: A Novelist Looks at His Craft -
David Morrell
Lie That Tells A Truth: A Guide to Writing Fiction
- John Dufresne
Making Shapely Fiction -
Jerome Stern
Mastering Point of View: How to Control POV to Create Conflict, Depth & Suspense -
Sherri Szeman
Novelist's Essential Guide to Creating Plot -
J. Madison Davis
On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft -
Stephen King
Pen Commandments: A Gude for the Beginning Writer -
Steven Frank
Plot & Structure: Techniques & Exercises for Crafting a Plot that Grips Readers from Start to Finish-
James Scott Bell
Plot -
Ansen Dibell
Scene & Structure-
Jack M. Bickham
Secret Windows: Essays & Fiction on the Craft of Writing -
Stephen King
So You Want to Write -
Marge Piercy & Ira Wood
Spider, Spin Me A Web: A Handbook for Fiction Writers -
Lawrence Block
Starting From Scratch: A Different Kind of Writer's Manual -
Rita Mae Brown
Steal This Plot: A Writer's Guide to Story Structure and Plagiarism -
June & William Noble
Steering the Craft: Exercises & Discussions on Story Writing for the Lone Navigator or the Mutinous Crew -
Ursula K. LeGuin
Stein on Writing -
Sol Stein
Technique in Fiction -
Robie Macauley & George Lanning
Techniques of Fiction Writing: Measure & Madness -
Leon Surmelian
Telling Lies for Fun & Profit: A Manual for Fiction Writers -
Lawrence Block
The Plot Thickens: 8 Ways to Bring Fiction to Life -
Noah Lukeman
The Writer's Journey: Mythic Structure for Storytellers & Screenwriters -
Christopher Vogler
Theme & Strategy-
Ronald B. Tobias
Word Painting: A Guide to Writing More Descriptively -
Rebecca McClanahan
Writing Fiction: A Guide to Narrative Craft -
Janet Burroway
Writing Whizardry: 60 Mini-Lessons to Teach Elaboration and Writer's Craft -
Maity Schrecengost

Living and Working in a Literary Life
Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life - Anne Lamott
Biographer's Craft: Practical Advice -
Milton Lomask
Creating A Life Worth Living -
Carol Lloyd
Dancing at the Edge of the World: Thoughts on Words, Women, Places -
Ursula K. LeGuin
Escaping Into The Open: The Art of Writing True -
Elizabeth Berg
Faith of a Writer: Life, Art, Craft -
Joyce Carol Oates
For Love & Money: A Writing Life -
Jonathan Raban
Listen to Me: Writing Life Into Meaning -
Lynn Lauber
Living the Dream: An Outline for a Life in Fiction -
Michael Seidman
Living the Writer's Life: A Complete Self-Help Guide -
Eric Maisel, Ph.D.
Making A Literary Life: Advice for Writers and Other Dreamers -
Carolyn See
Negotiating With The Dead: A Writing on Writing -
Margaret Atwood
On Writing: Advice for Those Who Write to Publish (Or Would Like To) -
George V. Higgins
Seven Steps on the Writer's Path: Journey from Frustration to Fulfillment -
Nancy Pickard & Lynn Lott
Sometimes the Magic Works: Lessons from a Writing Life -
Terry Brooks
Surviving A Writer's Life -
Suzanne Lipsett
The Company of Writers: Fiction Workshops & Thoughts on the Writing Life -
Hilma Wolitzer
The Right to Write: An Invitation and Initiation into the Writing Life -
Julia Cameron
Van Gogh Blues: The Creative Person's Path Through Depression - Eric Maisel, Ph.D
The Writing Life -
Annie Dillard
True Subject: Writers on Life & Craft - Best Writer's Conference Lectures -
edited by Kurt Brown
Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life -
Natalie Goldberg
Word Work: Surviving and Thriving as a Writer -
Bruce Holland Rogers
Writing For Your Life: A Guide and Companion to the Inner Worlds -
Deena Metzger
Writing Past Dark: Envy, Fear, Distraction, & Other Dilemmas in the Writer's Life -
Bonnie Friedman
Writing the Australian Crawl: Views on the Writer's Vocation - William Stafford

For Inspiration and Creativity-Building
Best Writing on Writing - edited by Jack Heffron
Beyond the Words: The Three Untapped Sources of Creative Fulfillment for Writers -
Bonnie Goldberg
Creativity Book: A Year's Worth of Inspiration & Guidance -
Eric Maisel, Ph.D
Dancing in the Dragon's Den: Rekindling the Creative Fire in Your Shadow - Rosanne Bane
Deep Writing: 7 Principles That Bring Ideas to Life -
Eric Maisel
Finding What You Didn't Lose: Expressing Your Truth & Creativity Through Poem-Making -
John Fox
For Writers Only: Inspiring Thoughts -
Sophy Burnham
Heroine's Journey: Woman's Quest for Wholeness
- Maureen Murdock
If You Want to Write: A Book About Art, Independence and Spirit - Brenda Ueland
Journey Notes: Writing for Recovery and Spiritual Growth -
Richard Solly & Roseann Lloyd
Letters to a Fiction Writer -
edited by Frederick Busch
Life's Companion: Journal Writing as a Spiritual Quest -
Christina Baldwin
Living By Fiction -
Annie Dillard
New Diary: How to Use a Journal for Self Guidance and Expanded Creativity -
Tristine Rainer
One to One: Self-Understanding Through Journal Writing - Christina Baldwin
One Writer's Beginnings -
Eudora Welty
Pencil Dancing: New Ways to Free Your Creative Spirit -
Mari Messer
Power to Write: Seven Keys to Discover Your Writer Within -
Caroline Joy Adams
Rules for the Dance: A Handbook For Writing and Reading Metrical Verse -
Mary Oliver
Source Imagery: Releasing the Power of your Creativity -
Sandra G. Shuman, Ph.D.
Telling Time: Angels, Ancestors, & Stories - Essays on Writing - Nancy Willard
The Artist's Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity -
Julia Cameron
Sound of Paper: Starting From Scratch -
Julia Cameron
The Wave in the Mind: Talks & Essays on the Writer, the Reader, and the Imagination -
Ursula K. LeGuin
Thunder and Lightning: Cracking Open the Writer's Craft -
Natalie Goldberg
Vein of Gold: A Journey to Your Creative Heart -
Julia Cameron
Walking on Water: Reflections on Faith & Art - Madeleine L'Engle
Wrestling with Your Angels: A Spiritual Journey to Great Writing -
Janet O. Hagberg
Write from the Heart: Unleashing the Power of Your Creativity -
Hal Zina Bennett
Writers Dreaming: 26 Writers Talk About Their Dreams & The Creative Process -
Naomi Epel
Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within -
Natalie Goldberg
Zen in the Art of Writing: Essays On Creativity -
Ray Bradbury

Editing, Rewriting, Revising
Editors on Editing: What Writers Need to Know About What Editors Do - ed. Gerald Gross
Elephants of Style: A Trunkload of Tips on the Big Issues and Gray Areas of Contemporary American English -
Bill Walsh
Getting The Words Right: 39 Ways To Improve Your Writing - Theodore A. Rees Cheney
Guide to Rapid Revision -
Daniel & Paula Perlman
Lapsing Into A Comma -
Bill Walsh
Line By Line: How to Edit Your Own Writing -
Claire Kehrwald Cook
Revising Fiction: A Handbook for Writers -
David Madden
Revision: A Creative Approach to Writing and Rewriting Fiction -
David Michael Kaplan
Self-Editing for Fiction Writers: How to Edit Yourself into Print - Renni Browne & Dave King
The Elements of Editing: A Modern Guide for Editors & Journalists -
Arthur Plotnik
The Elements of Grammar -
Margaret Shertzer
The Elements of Style -
William Strunk, Jr. and E.B. White
The Forest for the Trees: An Editor's Advice to Writers -
Betsy Lerner

Novel Writing
A Story is a Promise: Things to Know Before You Write that Screenplay, Novel or Play - Bill Johnson
Art & Craft of Novel Writing -
Oakley Hall
Get That Novel Started (And Keep It Going 'Til You Finish) - Donna Levin
How to Grow a Novel: The Most Common Mistakes Writers Make & How to Overcome Them -
Sol Stein
How To Write a DAMN Good Novel -
James N. Frey
On Becoming a Novelist -
John Gardner
Marshall Plan for Novel Writing -
Evan Marshall
Novel Writer's Toolkit: A Guide to Writing Great Fiction & Getting It Published - Bob Mayer
The Key: How to Write DAMN Good Fiction Using the Power of Myth -
James N. Frey
The Weekend Novelist -
Robert J. Ray
Write Away: One Novelist's Approach to Fiction & The Writing Life -
Elizabeth George
Writer's Digest Handbook of Novel Writing - Ed. of Writer's Digest
Writing the Breakout Novel -
Donald Maass
Writing the Novel: From Plot to Print -
Lawrence Block

Memoir/Creative Nonfiction
Beyond the Writers' Workshop: New Ways to Write Creative Nonfiction - Carol Bly
Leaving A Trace: The Art of Transforming a Life into Stories -
Alexandra Johnson
Living to Tell The Tale: A Guide to Writing Memoir -
Jane Taylor McDonnell
Old Friend From Far Away: How To Write a Memoir (AUDIO-TAPE) -
Natalie Goldberg
On Writing Well: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction -
William Zinsser
Pain and Possibility: Writing Your Way Through Personal Crisis -
Gabrielle Rico
The Situation & The Story: The Art of Personal Narrative -
Vivian Gornick
Turning Memories into Memoirs: A Handbook for Writing Lifestories -
Denis Ledoux
Write From Life: Turning Your Personal Experiences into Compelling Stories -
Meg Files
Writing A Woman's Life -
Carolyn G. Heilbrun
Writing from Life: Telling Your Soul's Story -
Susan Wittig Albert
Writing from Within: A Guide to Creativity and Life Story Writing -
Bernard Selling
Writing the Memoir: From Truth to Art -
Judith Barrington
Writing the Sacred Journey: The Art & Practice of Spiritual Memoir -
Elizabeth J. Andrew
Your Life as Story: Discovering "New Autobiography"/Writing Memoir As Literature -
Tristine Rainer

Short Story Writing
Art & Craft of the Short Story - Rick DeMarinis
Creating Short Fiction - Damon Knight
How to Write Short Stories: The Ideal Companion for Aspiring Fiction Writers -
Sharon Sorenson
On Writing Short Stories -
ed. Francine Prose
On Writing the Short Story -
Hallie Burnett
Story-Crafting -
Paul Darcy Boles
The Passionate Accurate Story -
Carol Bly
The Story and its Writer: An Introduction to Short Fiction -
Ann Charters
Writing in General and The Short Story in Particular -
L. Rust Hills
Writing the Short Story: A Hands-On Program -
Jack M. Bickham
Screenwriting & Screen/Stageplays
Complete Book of Scriptwriting - J. Michael Straszynski
Four Screenplays: Studies in the American Screenplay -
Syd Field
How Not To Write a Screenplay: 101 Common Mistakes -
Denny Martin Flinn
Playwright's Process: Learning Craft from Today's Leading Dramatists -
Buzz McLaughlin
Screenplay: The Foundations of Screenwriting-
Syd Field
Screenwriter's Bible: Complete Guide to Writing, Formatting, & Selling Your Script -
David Trotter
Screenwriter's Workbook -
Syd Field
Story: Substance, Structure, Style, and The Principles of Screenwriting -
Robert McKee
Writing Screenplays that Sell -
Michael Hauge
Exercises and Strategies for Writing
A Writer's Book of Days: A Spirited Companion & Lively Muse for the Writing Life - Judy Reeves
A Writer's Notebook: Unlocking The Writer Within You -
Ralph Fletcher
Fiction Writer's Brainstormer -
James V. Smith, Jr.
Live Writing: Breathing Life Into Your Words -
Ralph Fletcher
What If?: Writing Exercises for Fiction Writers -
Anne Bernays & Pamela Painter
Writing from the Heart: Inspiration/Exercises for Women Who Want to Write -
Lesléa Newman

Books for Those Who Simply Love WORDS
Bryson's Dictionary of Troublesome Words - Bill Bryson
Informal English: Puncture Ladies, Egg Harbors, Mississippi Marbles, & Other Curious Words and Phrases of North America -
Jeffrey Kacirk
The Mother Tongue: English and How it Got that Way - Bill Bryson
The Story of English - McCrum, Cran, & MacNeil

Writer's Block
Courage to Write: How Writers Transcend Fear - Ralph Keyes
On Writer's Block: A New Approach to Creativity -
Victoria Nelson
Outwitting Writer's Block & Other Problems of the Pen -
Jenna Glatzer
UNSTUCK: A Supportive/Practical Guide to Working Through Writer's Block -
Jane Anne Staw
War of Art: Break Through the Blocks & Win Your Inner Creative Battles -
Steven Pressfield
Writer's Book of Hope: Getting from Frustration to Publication -
Ralph Keyes
Writing From The Inside Out: Transforming Psychological Blocks -
Dennis Palumbo

Crime Fiction/Mystery Writing
Armed and Dangerous: A Writer's Guide to Weapons - Michael Newton
Art of the Mystery Story -
ed. Howard Haycraft
CODE BLUE: A Writers Guide to Hospitals, including ER, OR, & ICU - Drs. Keith Wilson & David Page
Criminal Mind: A Writer's Guide to Forensic Psychology -
Katherine Ramsland, Ph.D.
Deadly Doses: A Writer's Guide to Poisons -
Serita Deborah Stevens w/ Anne Klarner
Elements of Mystery Fiction: Writing a Modern Whodunit -
William G. Tapply
Hidden Evidence: 43 Crimes and How Forensic Science Helped Solve Them -
David Owen
How to Write a DAMN Good Mystery: A Practical Step-by-Step Guide from Inspiration to Finished Manuscript -
James N. Frey
How to Write a Mystery -
Larry Beinhart
How to Write KILLER Fiction: The Funhouse of Mystery & Roller Coaster of Suspense -
Carolyn Wheat
Howdunit: How Crimes are Committed and Solved -
ed. by John Boertlein
Lights & Sirens: A Writer's Guide to Emergency Rescue Professions -
James & Lois Cowan
Missing Person: A Writer's Guide to Finding the Lost, the Abducted and the Escaped -
Fay Faron
Murder One: A Writer's Guide to Homicide -
Mauro V. Corvasce & Joseph R. Paglino
Plotting and Writing Suspense Fiction -
Patricia Highsmith
Police Procedure & Investigation: A Guide for Writers -
Lee Lofland
Police Procedural: A Writer's Guide to Police and How They Work -
Russell Bintliff
RIP-OFF: A Writer's Guide to Crimes of Deception -
Fay Faron
Scene of the Crime: A Writer's Guide to Crime-Scene Investigations -
Anne Wingate, Ph.D.
Speaking of Murder: Interviews with Masters of Mystery & Suspense -
ed. Gorman & Greenberg
They Wrote the Book: Thirteen Women Mystery Writers Tell All -
ed. Helen Windrath
Urge to Kill: How Police Take Homicide from Case to Court -
Martin Edwards
Weekend Novelist Writes A Mystery -
Robert J. Ray & Jack Remick
Writing Bestselling True Crime and Suspense -
Tom Byrnes
Writing the Modern Mystery -
Barbara Norville
Writing the Mystery: A Start-to-Finish Guide for Both Novice & Professional -
G. Miki Hayden
Writing the Private Eye Novel: A Handbook by the Private Eye Writers of America -
ed. Robert J. Randisi
Writing the Thriller -
T. Macdonald Skillman
You Can Write a Mystery -
Gillian Roberts

Other Genre Writing
How to Write a Dirty Story: Reading, Writing, and Publishing Erotica - Susie Bright
How To Write Science Fiction and Fantasy -
Orson Scott Card
Joy of Writing Sex: A Guide for Fiction Writers -
Elizabeth Benedict
Language of the Night: Essays on Fantasy and Science Fiction -
Ursula K. LeGuin
Practical Tips for Writing Popular Fiction -
Robyn Carr
World-Building: A Guide to Constructing Star Systems & Life-Supporting Planets - Stephen L. Gillett
Technical Aspects of the Writing Business
30 Steps to Becoming A Writer and Getting Published - Scott Edelstein
Agents, Editors and You -
edited by Michelle Howry
Be Your Own Literary Agent -
Martin P. Levin
From Pen to Print: The Secrets of Getting Published Successfully -
Ellen M. Kozak
Literary Law Guide for Authors: Copyrights, Trademarks, and Contracts in Plain Language -
Tonya Marie Evans & Susan Borden Evans
Manuscript Submission -
Scott Edelstein
Writing.com: Creative Internet Strategies to Advance your Writing Career -
Moira Anderson Allen
Your Novel Proposal from Creation to Contract: The Complete Guide to Writing Query Letters, Synopses and The Practical Writer's Guide: An Easy-Access Source Book -
Mary A. DeVries
Proposals for Agents and Editors - Blythe Camenson & Marshall J. Cook
Writing.com: Creative Internet Strategies to Advance Your Writing Career - Moira Anderson Allen

Post-Publication Issues
Complete Guide to Book Publicity - Jodee Blanco
Guerilla Marketing for Writers: 100 Weapons for Selling Your Work -
Levinson, Frishman, & Larsen
Guerilla Saving: Secrets for Keeping Profits in Your Home-Based Business -
J.Levinson & Kathryn Tyler
How to Publish and Promote Online -
M.J. Rose & Angela Adair-Hoy
Intent To Sell: Marketing The Genre Novel -
Jeffrey Marks
Jump Start Your Book Sales: Money-Making Guide etc. -
Marilyn & Tom Ross
Poor Richard's Branding Yourself Online: How to Use the Internet to Become a Celebrity or Expert in Your Field -
Bob Baker
Publicize Your Book!: An Insider's Guide to Getting Your Book Attention It Deserves -
Jacqueline Deval
Unleash The Artist Within: Four Weeks to Transforming Your Creative Talents Into More Recognition, More Profit and More Fun - Bob Baker


This page last updated on July 2, 2022

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