Top of the Stack
One of the most sacred spaces for any lover of writing is the top shelf of a bookcase. Far from a place of retirement, this is that personal hall of fame you can reliably revisit any day or night.
Let me share with you a peak at my favorite shelf. It’s filled with writing and editing guides. I’m afraid a definitive collection of fiction and poetry favorites would never fit in one place, but these are my all-star resources for blogging and writing poetry or fiction.
Other disclosures: this is not quite literally my top shelf (it’s kept instead at eye level for an easier reach), and I return to some of the these selections much more than the others.
What are you seeing up there? Here is the current collection:
Writing Fiction and Poetry
- The Art and Craft of Novel Writing (Hall)
- The Glimmer Train Guide to Writing Fiction (vols. 1 and 2)
- If You Want to Write (Ueland)
- Keys for Writers (Raimes)
- Lessons From a Lifetime of Writing (Morrell)
- The New Book of Forms (Turco)
- No Plot? No Problem! (Baty)
- On Writing (King)
- Plot and Structure (Write Great Fiction / Bell)
- The Science Fiction Poetry Handbook (Elgin)
- Wonderbook (Vandermeer)
- The Writer’s Guide to Character Traits (Edelstein)
- Writing Down the Bones (Goldberg)
- Writing With Style: Conversations on the Art of Writing (Trimble)
- Character Naming Sourcebook (The Writer’s Digest / Kenyon)
- Zen in the Art of Writing (Bradbury)
Editing and Style Guides
- The Associated Press Stylebook and Briefing on Media Law (2000)
- The Chicago Manual of Style (15th ed.)
- The Copyeditor’s Handbook (Einsohn)
- The Copywriter’s Handbook (Bly)
- Eats, Shoots & Leaves (Truss)
- The Gregg Reference Manual (Sabin)
- Letting Go of the Words (Redish)
- A Manual of Style (Portland House)
- Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary (11th ed.)
- Proofreading Plain & Simple (May)
- Writer’s Market (2012 Deluxe ed.)
I would like to expand this list with brief reviews at some point.
So, writers, which of the writing and editing books on this list have you enjoyed? What do you keep on your top shelf?