Five Books on my Writing Reference Shelf


F is for
Five Books on my Writing Reference Shelf

These five books are on a special writing reference shelf in my office, and I refer to them often.
Stephen King’s On Writing – The best advice on writing from the Master himself.
Elmore Leonard’s 10 Rules of Writing – Straightforward rules from the Late Great Wordsmith. I think of him every time I use an exclamation point.
Book of Names – Handy when picking out character names 
Dictionary & Thesaurus combo 
– I have them on my computer but sometimes I need to look words up in the book version, and the hard copy works even when the internet goes out.
A pocket-sized moleskine in which I keep notes on commonly misspelled and misused words, writing tips, format, final draft checklists, and stuff like that.  If I have to look something up more than twice, it gets a page.

What are your go-to books?

15 comments on “Five Books on my Writing Reference Shelf

  1. Victoria says:

    Love Stephen Kings book, and two of my other favs are, Writing Fiction by James Scott Bell and Writing Young Adult Fiction for Dummies.

  2. nrhatch says:

    My Dictionary is the most dog-eared.

    • Glad I’m not the only one who like a hard copy of the dictionary to flip thru. 🙂 It gives more details usually than the online versions, including etymology and more detailed definitions.

  3. hughiegibson says:

    thought I was the only one with a baby name book.

  4. bookmammal says:

    Stephen King’s book is simply wonderful–I don’t like his fiction so much, but I loved On Writing. I also adore Bird By Bird by Anne Lamott. Plus, you can’t go wrong with good old Strunk & White!

  5. Teresa C. says:

    On Writing is one of my go to. I like to look over the Leonard book. Looks awesome.

  6. njmagas says:

    I could leave a huge list here of all the writing books I own, but the one I really recommend is Jessica Page Morrell’s Thanks, But This Isn’t For Us. It’s written by a developmental editor, giving great examples of all the various bumps that sink manuscripts. I really loved the humor in it, and the great advice.

  7. Lucy Ravitch says:

    Since I write PBs my favorite is How to Write Picture Books by Ann Whitford Paul : )

  8. cjswriting says:

    I absolutely love On Writing. It is one I have referred to again and again.

    Hello from a fellow A to Z challenger. Hope you are enjoying your month. I am!

    Have a great month.

  9. misterk3 says:

    Great post, love it!

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