Top 6 Books to Help Your Writing. This guest article comes from Angie Picard0.
Are great writers born or are they made? The answer: both. There are people out there who are innately driven to write, they write because there is something within them that pushes them to put their thoughts and ideas to paper; for them, writing is as essential as breathing. Those same people recognize that while they are artists they must also be craftsmen. There is a reason that writers are also dubbed wordsmiths, because like all good craftspeople they must dedicate time to perfecting their craft. Writers do this by reading the works of other writers, just as painters must learn by copying the masters. So too must writers seek the wisdom of those who have gone before. While reading the works of the literary greats will help you discover your own style there are also writers out there who have written about the craft of writing. The basics of writing and style guides will be immensely helpful in creating your own tone, voice, style, stories, and works.
List of Top 6 Books to Help Boost Your Writing
1. Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr. and E.B. White
This book in a must have for any aspiring writer! It is a classic and has been read and resourced by dozens of other writers. Why is this book so prolific? Because it gives you all of the essentials to great writing. Don’t underestimate the necessity of basics when writing for they are the foundation to great prose. You can also generally pick them up very cheap online or at a used book store.
2. The Mother Tongue: English and How it Got That Way by Bill Bryson.
Perhaps the best history of the English language ever written; Bryson has managed to make the weird and wonderful history of English grammar interesting and amusing. He even includes a delightful chapter dedicated to swearing and wordplay. A great read that anyone with a curiosity for the history and imaginative uses of English should read.
This is another classic on writing non-fiction. This timeless book is great for anyone who is interested in writing essays or anything outside the realm of fiction. From travel, memoir, business, and scientific writing this book is the go to guide for writers of all kinds. Zinsser manages to make grammar interesting and giving sound advice on tone, word usage, style, and coherence.
Aside from the plethora of style and writing guides the anecdotal advice of authors themselves is always useful insight into the world of writing by those who do it themselves.
4. Writers on Writing (Collected essays from the New York Times)
These collected essays are a fun and delightful read and the collection has an array of writers from Joyce Carol Oates to Kurt Vonnegut. These essays have insight and wit abounding, it is great to read the words of others especially when writer’s block rears its ugly head.
5. Ernest Hemingway on Writing by Ernest Hemingway, Larry W. Phillips (edit0r)
This is my personal favorite book on writing. The essays feature titles such as “Advice to Writers” and “Obscenities” and are presented in the way on Hemingway can deliver them, candidly and directly.
6. The Writing Life: Writers On How They Think And Work (collected by Marie Arana from the Washington Posts’ column of the same title)
This is another brilliant collection of leading contemporary writers and how they work. This book gives the reader better insight into the inner world of the writer and how they work and gives us a glimpse into the literary life. This doesn’t deal with practical advice as much as it gives you a sneak peek into the work that goes into writing.
For an aspiring writer it is important to read, almost constantly, in order to develop ourselves as writers. It is well known among writers that while they all were born with the urge to write they had to learn to become writers. These books are remarkable tools that you can have at your disposal in order to finely hone your craft and become a more well rounded writer.
Check out another book list on this blog
Angie Picardo is a writer for NerdWallet a personal finance website that aspires to add wit and honesty in answering questions that will help you plan for retirement success.