In this week's post, I want to share five books I've found helpful along my writing journey. They cover a range of topics from mindset to productivity, and I dip into them regularly. I hope you find them useful.
1: Rachel Aaron - 2k to 10k: Writing Faster, Writing Better, and Writing More of What You Love
This was one of the first books I read on writing productivity, and it's one of the best. I know several of my author friends have already benefitted from its wisdom. Adopt its principles and you'll find the annual NaNoWriMo competition, in which contestants attempt to write 50,000 words of a novel within thirty days, a breeze. A caveat - it's aimed at those who prefer to plan their books rather than adopting a more 'seat of the pants' approach. But if you're hoping to increase your daily word count, while enjoying the process of writing more, then this book may be what you're looking for. Why not try it?
2: Libbie Hawker - Take Off Your Pants!: Outline Your Books for Faster, Better Writing
Talking of writing with a 'seat of the pants' approach, my next recommendation is Libbie Hawker's wonderfully titled book. I bought this one because I was curious about other methods of planning and plotting a novel. So far I've used Randy Ingermansson's Snowflake method, which I love - it suits the way my brain works. However, apart from mentioning that novels should contain three disasters, the Snowflake method gives little guidance about novel structure. Step into the picture, Libbie Hawkes! Libbie's excellent book gives detailed instructions for pacing your novel properly, with plenty of examples. I highly recommend it.
3: Jacqueline Garlick - Tick-Tock Edits: How To Edit Your Own Writing: Ten Quick and Easy Tips To Strengthen Any Manuscript
Jacqueline's book (another one with a great title!) doesn't pretend to be a detailed treatise on how to edit a novel. Instead, what she provides are eleven (yes, eleven, despite what the title says) useful things to remember when editing. Ditch those adverbs, watch out for annoying speech tags, etc... all helpful stuff. I worked through 'The Second Captive' this morning, pruning the narrative according to her advice, and it really helped. Once I'd removed the offending words, the prose was cleaner, crisper and better.
Besides, for the measly price of 99p, you can't go wrong!
4: Joanna Penn - How to Make a Living with Your Writing: Books, Blogging and More
Joanna Penn is a well-established novelist, and one of the most helpful people on the planet when it comes to assisting other writers. Her non-fiction website, The Creative Penn, is packed with useful tips and advice, and Joanna blogs and creates podcasts regularly. So it's no surprise that she's also written a series of excellent books aimed at authors. I've bought most of them, but the one I want to highlight today is 'How to Make a Living With Your Writing'. It's full of practical advice, including tips on mindset, productivity and advice on your options for getting published. There's also a companion workbook to guide you through answering the questions.
5: Honoree Corder - Prosperity for Writers: A Writer's Guide to Creating Abundance
My final book today is Honoree Corder's very helpful 'Prosperity for Writers - A Writer's Guide to Creating Abundance'. As the title suggests, it's about adopting the right mindset concerning the earnings you can expect as a writer. When I tell people I'm a novelist, they often ask whether I can sustain a living that way. I get tired of this assumption that all writers earn a pittance, and it's one Honoree aims to dispel. She discusses the importance of positive thinking and of not succumbing to the notion that your writing won't be lucrative. As she's a full-time writer herself, she knows a thing or two about this!
UK readers, check out these books on Amazon! (Affiliate links)
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