My friend Suzanne, over at panhandleprofessionalwriters, posted her “Top Ten Book on Writing Everyone Should Read.” If you haven’t stopped by her blog, you should – awesome posts on authors, writing, books, conferences, and other creative writing topics.
Here is her list:
1. The Elements of Style by Strunk and White
2. Bird by Bird: Some Instruction on the Writing Life by Anne Lamott
3. On Writing by Stephen King
4. Zen in the Art of Writing by Ray Bradbury
5. Ernest Hemingway on Writing Edited by Larry W. Phillips
6. The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battle by Steven Pressfield
7. How to Create a Sentence by Stanley Fish
8. How to Read a Book by Mortimer J. Adler and Charles van Doren
10. Word Painting: A Guide to Writing More Descriptively by Rebecca McClanahan
My list matched 6 out of the ten (so far), how about you? Do you have a list?
“Writing and reading decrease our sense of isolation. They depen and widen and expand our sense of life: they feed the soul. When writers make us shake our heads with the exactness of their prose and their truths, and even make us laugh about ourselves or life, our buoyancy is restored. We are given a shot at dancing with, or at least clapping along with, the absurdity of life, instead of being squashed by it over and over again. It’s like singing on a boat during a terrible storm at sea. You can’t stop the raging storm, but singing can change the hearts and spirits of the people who are together on that ship.”
William C. Knott, in The Craft of Fiction, cogently observes that “anyone can write – and almost everyone you meet these days is writing. However, only the writers know how to rewrite, It is this ability alone that turn the amateur into a pro.” — taken from Writing Fiction, A Guide to Narrative Craft (Burroway and Stuckey-French).
I don’t think Mr. Knott could be any more
write right- because revision, I’m afraid, is a pain in the [____]. It takes an insane amount of determination and dedication; in most cases, it’s fueled by desire and rather than creativity. It is subject to constant battles against procrastination, this post just the latest piece in the onslaught. I remind myself that people, like the three mentioned authors above, have conquered this process before, and so, so can I. Look at the bright side, 80,000 is nothing when it comes to revision!