There is always much discussion about whether a good writer is naturally talented or skilled. If I have been blessed with talent – I certainly feel I want to “edge” it by honing my skills as a writer. The following are resources I have utilized throughout the years; always of a mind to bring the best possible product before my readers.
James N. Frey: His books have become my favorite books on writing. They are filled with exciting insights- a great overview of fine literature- and professional tips on writing quality novels. I found many illustrations about developing a premise… internal and external conflict… and how to top it all off with a satisfying climax. The book is a good resource for debut authors and others who have been working to craft their skills for years. The author’s gift of self-expression and the ability to open the reader to new writing insights make the qualities of fine fiction understandable and something writers can learn to reproduce. Although the book has enough resources and foundation to be scholarly- the writer‘s style makes it a fun and entertaining read as well.
Jan Venolia: Rewrite Right is more functional than other grammar books I’ve purchased because it is small ( 6 X 7) and contains just 189 well-used pages. Her use of images and short sentences from famous authors (particularly Mark Twain) also makes this a fun read and quick learning tool. Her Index saves time.
Lisa Leonard Cook: With one of the top three on my list of books for fiction writers… I have polished my skills by following her short and germane examples that are followed by succinct commentaries. Cook shows writers how to replace adjectives with verbs that “show.” I’ve learned proper dialog punctuation…various points of view… and my strengths and limitations as a writer.
Lynn C. Miller and Lisa Leonard-Cook: Many people know they have a story to tell. How to tell it is a different matter; do you write a linear autobiography about your whole life or try to disguise your story as fiction? Or do you develop a memoir about specific people and incidents that have meaning for you? Lynn C. Miller and Lisa Leonard-Cook – both accomplished writers and writing teachers – use the elements of story to create a step by step guide for anyone interested in discovering the narrative potential of the personal story that burns to be told. I have used many of the techniques and exercises in this book to find a creative way of turning life into fiction.