Sometimes, when writing just doesn't do it for me, I like to read books on the craft of writing. How many of you like books like that, those "how to write" books? All of those who do, raise your hands.
That many, hey? Hurray, I'm not alone!
Seriously, now, which is your favourite "how to" book? I have read one that is an absolute must-have. It's called "No More Rejections" by Alice Orr, and it is fabulous! She really pinpoints the elements of a stellar manuscript, and gives fantastic tips on how to compose a perfect manuscript. There's a little section on sex and love scenes that I don't really like, because she gets a little too familiar about what to include in an adult novel, but other than that, the book is great.
For fantasy writers, check out Orson Scott's Card's "How to Write Science Fiction and Fantasy." Heavens, but that man is a masterful writer! After reading his book, I was inspired beyond inspiration to get myself published. He's that good, and that motivational. It was amazing.
There's another book I love, that I found at Barnes and Noble one time. It's called "The Little Red Writing Book", written by Brandon Royal, and there's nothing in it that's not to love. It's got these lovely black-and-white illustrations that complement the simple, funny style of the book. It reveals twenty "powerful principles of structure, style, and readability," defining each principle with examples, exercises, and the occasional anecdote. It's a wonderful read, and it's adorable, too. It's fun to read just for the pictures and the exercises.
One other book that I think is awesome is one called "Police Procedure and Investigation" by Lee Lofland. That is a fantastic read. It's part of a "Howdunit" series, of which I own "Police Procedure" and "Forensics." There's another one, about poisons, that I really want to get.
Oh, and there's this writer's toolbox that looks like fantastic fun. Just as an aside. It looks super cool and fun. Here's a link, so you can peruse it and drool, too. The Writer's Toolbox: By Jamie Cat Callan.
What sort of "how to" books do you like? Which do you own, and which ones do you recommend?