Books on Writing in My Library
I'm never going to go back to school for an M.F.A in Creative Writing (the workshop scene in Girls alone made me die) but I can always read. So. Here's my personal M.F.A syllabus.
- •Steering the Craft by Ursula LeGuin
- •Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life by Natalie Goldberg
- •What If: Writing Exercises for Fiction Writers by Anne Bernard and Pamela Painter
- •Bird by Bird, Anne Lamott
- •If You Want to Write, Brenda UelandThis one is hands down my favorite. Published in 1938, Ueland is way ahead of her time with her generous and inclusive approach to writing.
- •The Elements of Style, Strunk and WhiteFor when I want to know the rules.
- •A Poetry Handbook, Mary Oliver
- •The Forest for the Trees, Betsy Lerner
- •Letters to a Young Poet, Rainer Maria RilkeA well of inspiration. "Ask yourself in the most silent hour of the night: must I write? Dig into yourself for a deep answer. And if this answer rings out in assent... then build your life in accordance with this necessity."
- •The Craft of Fiction, Percy LubbockThis one's my favorite cover. Percy takes the modern novel apart to let you look at all its parts.
- •The Writing Life, Annie Dillard
- •Stephen King, On WritingI let my dad borrow this for a short story he was working on and he still has it.
- •Mystery and Manners, Flannery O'ConnorThis is a book of essays, but she has a section about authors/and their personal geography as well as some thoughts on the Southern Gothic as a genre.
- •And also, while you're here, read George Saunder's essay on what writers do when they write