I read about this sale over on Kim Harrison's site but it's such a great deal I wanted to post about it too. There are few things Writers like more than reading books on Writing, especially during NaNoWriMo!
I tried some of the links on HarperCollins' site but the books don't seem to be discounted at every retailer. For instance, Amazon doesn't have all these books on for $1.99, at least not when I checked.
Here are links (all go to Barnes & Noble) to 10 books on writing on sale for $1.99 in honor of NaNoWriMo:
1. Write For Your Life, by Lawrence Block
I haven't read this book but if it's by Lawrence Block it's going to be good. I love, and still use, his book How To Tell Lies For Fun and Profit.
2. On Writing Well: An Informal Guide to Writing Nonfiction, by William Zinsser
I've read this and re-read it many times. An excellent book to have in your reference library.
3. Write Away: One Novelist's Approach to Fiction and the Writing Life, by Elizabeth George
I love reading books on writing that have been written by prolific bestselling authors such as Elizabeth George. Ms. George wrote the series that the BBC's Inspector Lynley Mysteries is based on.
4. Reading Like a Writer, by Francine Prose
I just started reading this book, and I think it's brilliant! Here's an excerpt:
Can creative writing be taught? ....Anyone who can write like that is worth reading!
[I] answer by recalling my own most valuable experience, not as a teacher but as a student in one of the few fiction workshops I took. This was in the 1970s, during my brief career as a graduate student in medieval English literature, when I was allowed the indulgence of taking one fiction class. Its generous teacher showed me, among other things, how to line edit my work. For any writer, the ability to look at a sentence and see what’s superfluous, what can be altered, revised, expanded, or especially cut is essential. It’s satisfying to see that sentence shrink, snap into place, and ultimately emerge in a more polished form: clear, economical, sharp.
5. Elmore Leonard's 10 Rules of Writing, by Elmore Leonard
This is a short book, but you don't need a lot of space to communicate the essentials. For instance, "Never use an adverb to modify the verb 'said'." Stephen King would agree with that. I think many writer's regard it as some kind of sin; mortal not venal.
6. Escaping Into the Open: The Art of Writing True, Elizabeth Berg
I haven't read this one (yet!) but Elizabeth Berg has written enough books to know what she's talking about.
7. The Writing Life, by Annie Dillard
8. Unless It Moves the Human Heart: The Craft and Art of Writing, by Roger Rosenblatt
A different kind of book on writing since it's written more-or-less as an unfolding story about writing.
9. How to Write: Advice and Reflections, by Richard Rhodes
I think this is the only book on Writing I've ever read that was written by a Pulitzer Prize winner. Richard Rhodes has an impressive catalog of books to back up his musings.
10. How Not to Write a Novel: 200 Classic Mistakes and How to Avoid Them--A Misstep-by-Misstep Guide, by Howard Mittelmark, Sandra Newman
Well, that's it! I don't know exactly how long these books will be on sale for, on HarperCollins' site it just says "for a limited time" but since they're billed as NaNoWriMo books I'm guessing they'll be on sale through November.
It's not on sale, but the book that has pride of place on the self where I keep my reference books is Stephen King's On Writing. I can't recommend it highly enough.
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NaNoWriMo Update: Arrrrrrrrgh! Sometimes writing is easy and sometimes it's hard, for the last three days it's felt like I had to chisel words from stone! Bah! Still, I got my 2k done. My manuscript is now 43,018 words long. I hope to have 45k done by tomorrow. The end is in sight! :-)
Other articles you might like:- Robert J. Sawyer: Showing Not Telling
- Creating Memorable Supporting Characters
- Using Permanently Free Books To Increase Sales: Part 2
Photo credit: "NaNoWriMo Calendar 2012 Fresh Ribbon A" by Monda@NoTelling under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0.