Again, why reinvent the wheel? Or, to
use another analogy, why speed into unknown territory with no
map nor a word (or ten thousand) of advice from those who have
As writers we can learn from other writers, and also painters,
filmmakers, athletes in sum, anyone who sets out to do,
and keep on doing, extraordinary things when the world, alas,
does not always respond in a timely or generous manner.
Brown, Rita Mae: Starting
From Scratch: A Different Kind of Writer's Manual
The chapter on Anglo Saxon and Latin
is especially useful.
Burnham, Sophy, For
Easy to dip into. Wise words.
Baum, Kenneth, The
Mental Edge: Maximize Your Sports Potential
with the Mind-Body Connection
Also applicable to writers. Read
my mini-review and commentary here.
Benke, Karen, Rip
the Page! Adventures in Creative Writing
For creative children of
all ages. Read her guest-blog post for "Madam Mayo"
Cameron, Julia, The
New Agey and at the same time highly
Sound of Paper: Starting from Scratch
Thoughtful, elegant, and inspiring
Dillard, Annie, Living
A book about the world.
Flack, Audrey, Art
& Soul: Notes on Creating
Deep. The artist as shaman.
Friedman, Bonnie, Writing
Past Dark: Envy, Fear, Distraction, and Other Dilemmas in the
From the trenches.
**Gilbert, Elizabeth. Big
Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear
Wondrously, brilliantly wonderful.
*Goldberg, Natalie, Writing
Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within
A very popular book. Packed with
fun writing exercises.
*Iglesias, Karl, The
101 Habits of Highly Successful Screenwriters: Insider Tips from
Hollywood's Top Writers
I'm not a screenwriter (yet), but
I love this book. It was like reading about distant but kindred
tribe. Lots of useful tips.
*Lamott, Anne, Bird
by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life
Hilarious. For anyone at any stage
in their writing.
**Leonard, George, Mastery:
The Keys to Success and Long-Term Fulfillment
Maisel, Eric, PhD., Fearless Creating:
A Step-by-Step Guide to Starting and Completing Your Work of
Dr Maisel specializes in helping
artists, and he's a prolific writer himself. There is a great
deal of wise advice in this book.
Mayo, C.M. "On
Seeing as an Artist or, Five Techniques for a Journey to Einfuhlung."
Transcript of remarks for the panel on "Writing Across Borders
and Cultures," Women Writing the West conference, Santa
Fe, New Mexico, October 15, 2016.
*Palmer, Amanda, The
Art of Asking: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Let People
It might seem that this book is
about about asking for help and money and then, as Palmer puts
it, "taking the donuts." But it's really about something
far more profound: the artist as shaman.
**Newport, Cal, Deep
Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World.
Outstanding advice from a successful
academic and best-selling author.
**Pressfield, Steven, The
War of Art: Winning the Creative Battle
The best. If you're blocked and
you want to buy one book to help yourself, this is the one.
**Ricco, Gabriele Lusser, Writing
the Natural Way: Using Right-Brain Techniques to Release Your
Rhodes, Richard, How
to Write: Advice and Reflections
Good advice from a highly accomplished
and prolific writer.
*See, Carolyn, Making
a Literary Life
Good advice from another highly
accomplished and prolific writer -- this one from LA. It's a
Ueland, Brenda, If
You Want to Write: A Book About Art, Independence and Spirit
A classic. Very popular with many
of my writing workshop participants.
** Top picks
*Very highly recommended