All Things Writerly: 10 Must-Read Craft Books for Writers III

Straczynski Becoming Superman

Controversial best-selling fantasy novelist George (Game of Thrones) R. R. Martin once said “A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies.  The man who never reads lives only one.”  The All Things Writerly column has been back for a few months now, and in our last two installments we talked about various craft books, both of which went over very well with our readers.  So yet again we are providing a list of must-read books for writers of all ability and skill levels.  You asked and we heard, so let’s live already and get to all of the reading and the writing this life has to offer.  Here they are, in no particular order:

Why I Write by George Orwell

The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr. and E. B. White

The Freedom Writers Diary: How a Teacher and 150 Teens Used Writing to Change Themselves and the World Around Them by Erin Gruwell and the Freedom Writers

The Kite and the String: How to Write with Spontaneity and Control – and Live to Tell the Tale by Alice Mattison

The Activist WPA: Changing Stories about Writing and Writers by Linda Adler-Kassner

Where the Past Began: A Writer’s Memoir by Amy Tan

Becoming Superman: My Journey from Poverty to Hollywood with Stops Along the Way at Murder, Madness, Mayhem, Movie Stars, Cults, Slums, Sociopaths, and War Crimes by J. Michael Straczynksi

Conceding Composition: A Crooked History of Composition’s Institutional Fortunes by Ryan Skinnell

Reading Like a Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and for Those Who Want to Write Them by Francine Prose

The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person’s Guide to Writing in the 21st Century by Steven Pinker

So there you have it.  Like I said with the first entry in in this miniseries for the All Things Writerly column, there are thousands (hundreds of which are actually really, really good) of craft books out there, but these are the ones that have prominent places on our bookshelves.  And the ones that leave the shelves and make it to the writing desk.  Hope you’ll check them out.  These folks really know their stuff.

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