My Writing Shelves – Books On Writing

My Writing Shelves – Books On Writing (by Stephen King and Others)

My shelves groan under the weight of the heavy books stacked on them. I know they’ll collapse eventually with a loud crack – shooting broken rawl plugs across the room like little blue missiles – but I lack the basic DIY skills to prevent that. Before the inevitable collapse, I’ve taken a picture of some shelves containing the books about creative writing and other writing-related information.

Books for writers
Books for writers

You’ll see Stephen King’s book On Writing is there – an essential reference for any horror writer or writer in general – along with many others I’ve found useful for improving my writing. His book provides valuable advice about his writing process – including draft samples of his work with his notes and corrections. Seeing how Stephen King edits his work is greatly informative for anyone aspiring to write popular fiction. He shows his methods for turning a rough draft into publishable prose. Excellent tips by the master of horror.

Some of the other books about writing that I keep on my writing shelves are listed below.

How to Write Tales of Horror, Fantasy and Science Fiction edited by JN Williamson

Probably out of print by now. This book includes chapters by many famous writers.

Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook

Lists valuable markets for writers. Includes lists of agents, publishers and competitions. Updated annually.

Collins Good Writing Guide/Penguin Guide to Plain English/Cassell Guide to Writing English
These all contain excellent tips for writing.

Fowler’s Modern English Usage

Fowler’s book on grammar usage is very useful when I’m not sure if a sentence is grammatically correct. There are so many “rules” about writing good and bad sentences that a book like Fowler’s is a valuable resource. It provides advice based on real examples of great writing by the masters of literature.

The Good English Guide by Godfrey Howard

Another good book on English usage. Not as formal as Fowler’s.

Make Your Words Work by Gary Provost

This is an excellent book for writers with some solid advice on writing style.

Writer’s Digest Series

I find the books in the Writer’s Digest series a handy tool for researching a subject from a writer’s POV. They publish a mind-blowing number of books covering nearly every aspect of writing.

Roget’s Thesaurus

I must really like this book because I appear to have three copies.

I hope this information is useful for other writers.

Appy Memories of Deathtrap Dungeon

Appy Memories of Deathtrap Dungeon

This week the BBC’s Click programme talked about a new app based on the Fighting Fantasy game books that I loved as a kid. Now a whole generation of tech-lovers can read Ian “Deathtrap” Livingstone’s choose-your-own-adventure books without the need for a pencil, paper, eraser and some tiny dice that always got lost under a piece of furniture.

I hope these new apps are a huge success like the original books. They turned me from a reluctant reader into a voracious one. Until I discovered them, reading was a chore I did at school. I didn’t read anything at home – until one day I saw Deathtrap Dungeon in my local Woolworth’s. The cover was incredible. It showed a frighteningly ugly monster with rows of razor-sharp teeth. It was covered with slime, wallowing in a pit of green acid like Jabba the Hutt’s nastier brother.

Amazed, I had to buy it with my pocket money.

Reading that book awoke my imagination – making me excited to read for pleasure.

Those FF books were my literary introduction to horror, science fiction and fantasy.

I’ll never forget reading them.

And now, thanks to the new app, a new generation won’t either.

Adventurer, you are about to read the end of this blog post.

What will YOU do next?