© Belinda Witzenhausen Originally published on Suite101.com May 25, 2007
There are a ton of really great writing books on the market today however there are five books that are great resources to those just starting out.
These books have most areas of writing covered ranging from business to inspiration, along with a good dictionary and thesaurus, they are all you will need to get started and can be found online or at your nearest bookstore.
The Elements of Style – 4th Edition
William Strunk Jr. and E.B. White
This is a must-have on every writer’s bookshelf. The Elements of Style is a classic that was first published in 1959 and is still widely used today. This book leads you through rules of grammar, principles of composition and also includes a section outlining the words most commonly misspelled. This is a book that you will use as a regular resource for years to come and is ideal for a beginning writer to a seasoned writing veteran.
The Writer’s Market 2007
Robert Lee Brewer, Editor
Publisher: Writers Digest Books
Revised August 4, 2006
This annual book is for those who wish to break into publishing. The Writers Market has resources to thousands of agents, publishers and markets that can get you on your way. This book also offers great advice concerning how to write a book proposal as well as successful query letters, how to establish a freelance business and how to become a marketable writer.
Writing Tools – 50 Essential Strategies for Every Writer,
Roy Peter Clark,
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Copyright: September 1, 2006
Although just published last September, this book is definitely a book every writer should have. Poynter Institute Vice President Roy Peter Clark offers advice to those who are either beginners or established writers. Clark’s book is divided into 50 sections or “tools” which every writer should utilize. Each section lists strategies for incorporating the material covered in each section into your daily writing. This book covers everything from grammar to useful habits such as drafting a mission statement for your work.
Although this book covers some of the information that is available in The Elements of Style, it goes further by offering advice on character development, plotting, and the importance of creating a support group as well as being a great companion book.
The Writer’s Idea Book
Publisher: Writer’s Digest Books
Copyright: May 2000
Every writer encounters some form of writer’s block that may impair his or her writing projects. The Writer’s Idea Book is designed to get you past those blocks and enable the creative process to become a little easier.
In this book, Jack Heffron offers over 400 prompts to enhance your writing. Each section also offers sage advice on the creative process itself with chapters devoted to everything from “Enemies to Creativity” to “Leading a Creative Life”. This book will definitely teach you how to generate useable ideas for your projects and advise you on what you need to do to utilize them while writing.
The Right to Write – An Invitation and Initiation into the Writing Life
Copyright: December 27, 1999
The Right to Write gives you the tools to make the most of your creative drive. This book is composed of over 40 brief personal essays and exercises also known as “invitations” that are an endless source of inspiration. In The Right to Write, Cameron teaches you valuable tools to tackle problems such as procrastination, insecurity, lack of writing space and a lack of time. Cameron’s advice is valuable to anyone who has felt overwhelmed by the act of writing and helps you to break it down into pieces that are more manageable. This book is a favourite of many writers and will be a book you can revisit anytime you are in need of a dose of inspiration.
A library containing these five books is an investment in your writing life.