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Best Books About Writing

5 Books | by Medium

On Writing

On Writing

Books

This volume "really contains two books: a fondly sardonic autobiography and a tough-love lesson for aspiring novelists", written by American author of contemporary horror, suspense, science fiction and fantasy, Stephen King (b. 1947). The first third of the book contains King's memoir, which includes heartfelt tidbits about his brother, mother and his long battles with alcohol and drug addiction. The second part of the book, "On Writing," is where aspiring novelists might find inspiration. King describes the symbolism in many of his novels and offers writers common sense advice. He presents his taboos of writing: adverbs (especially those in dialog) and the passive voice. He describes his writer's toolbox, including examples of both good and bad writing, sometimes taken from his own work, sometimes taken from other writers. He also describes his approach to research. King concludes by including a list of nearly a hundred novels that he considers the best that he's read in the last three or four years.
The Elements of Style

The Elements of Style

Books

The only style manual to ever appear on a bestseller list now refreshed by one of our most beloved illustrators Every English writer knows Strunk and White's The Elements of Style. The book's mantra, make every word tell, is still on point. This much-loved classic, now in its fourth edition, will forever be the go-to guide when in need of a hint to make a turn of phrase clearer or a reminder on how to enliven prose with the active voice. The only style manual to ever appear on bestseller lists has explained to millions of readers the basic principals of plain English, and Maira Kalman's fifty-seven exquisite illustrations give the revered work a jolt of new energy, making the learning experience more colorful and clear.
Nobody Wants to Read Your Sh*t

Nobody Wants to Read Your Sh*t

Books

There's a mantra that real writers know but wannabe writers don’t. And the secret phrase is this: NOBODY WANTS TO READ YOUR SH*T. Recognizing this painful truth is the first step in the writer's transformation from amateur to professional. From Chapter Four: “When you understand that nobody wants to read your shit, you develop empathy. You acquire the skill that is indispensable to all artists and entrepreneurs—the ability to switch back and forth in your imagination from your own point of view as writer/painter/seller to the point of view of your reader/gallery-goer/customer. You learn to ask yourself with ev­ery sentence and every phrase: Is this interesting? Is it fun or challenging or inventive? Am I giving the reader enough? Is she bored? Is she following where I want to lead her?
On Writing Well, 30th Anniversary Edition

On Writing Well, 30th Anniversary Edition

Books

On Writing Well has been praised for its sound advice, its clarity and the warmth of its style. It is a book for everybody who wants to learn how to write or who needs to do some writing to get through the day, as almost everybody does in the age of e-mail and the Internet. Whether you want to write about people or places, science and technology, business, sports, the arts or about yourself in the increasingly popular memoir genre, On Writing Well offers you fundamental priciples as well as the insights of a distinguished writer and teacher. With more than a million copies sole, this volume has stood the test of time and remains a valuable resource for writers and would-be writers.
Ernest Hemingway on Writing

Ernest Hemingway on Writing

Books

An assemblage of reflections on the nature of writing and the writer from one the greatest American writers of the twentieth century. Throughout Hemingway’s career as a writer, he maintained that it was bad luck to talk about writing—that it takes off “whatever butterflies have on their wings and the arrangement of hawk’s feathers if you show it or talk about it.” Despite this belief, by the end of his life he had done just what he intended not to do. In his novels and stories, in letters to editors, friends, fellow artists, and critics, in interviews and in commissioned articles on the subject, Hemingway wrote often about writing. And he wrote as well and as incisively about the subject as any writer who ever lived… This book contains Hemingway’s reflections on the nature of the writer and on elements of the writer’s life, including specific and helpful advice to writers on the craft of writing, work habits, and discipline. The Hemingway personality comes through in general wisdom, wit, humor, and insight, and in his insistence on the integrity of the writer and of the profession itself. —From the Preface by Larry W. Phillips