naysayer within? How can we avoid the roadblocks of any creative
endeavor—be it starting up a dream business venture, writing a novel, or
painting a masterpiece?
The War of Art identifies the enemy that every one of us must face,
outlines a battle plan to conquer this internal foe, then pinpoints just
how to achieve the greatest success.
The War of Art emphasizes the resolve needed to recognize and
overcome the obstacles of ambition and then effectively shows how to
reach the highest level of creative discipline.
Think of it as tough love . . . for yourself.
The fourth edition has been thoroughly but respectfully revised by Joseph Bizup and William T. FitzGerald. It retains the original five-part structure, as well as the sound advice of earlier editions, but reflects the way research and writing are taught and practiced today. Its chapters on finding and engaging sources now incorporate recent developments in library and Internet research, emphasizing new techniques made possible by online databases and search engines. Bizup and FitzGerald provide fresh examples and standardized terminology to clarify concepts like argument, warrant, and problem.
Following the same guiding principle as earlier editions—that the skills of doing and reporting research are not just for elite students but for everyone—this new edition retains the accessible voice and direct approach that have made The Craft of Research a leader in the field of research reference. With updated examples and information on evaluation and using contemporary sources, this beloved classic is ready for the next generation of researchers.
follow-up to his bestseller The War of Art, Turning Pro navigates the
passage from the amateur life to a professional practice.
"You don't need to take a course or buy a product. All you have to do is change your mind."
TURNING PRO IS FREE, BUT IT'S NOT EASY.
we turn pro, we give up a life that we may have become extremely
comfortable with. We give up a self that we have come to identify with
and to call our own.
TURNING PRO IS FREE, BUT IT DEMANDS SACRIFICE.
passage from amateur to professional is often achieved via an interior
odyssey whose trials are survived only at great cost, emotionally,
psychologically and spiritually. We pass through a membrane when we turn
pro. It's messy and it's scary. We tread in blood when we turn pro.
WHAT WE GET WHEN WE TURN PRO.
we get when we turn pro is we find our power. We find our will and our
voice and we find our self-respect. We become who we always were but
had, until then, been afraid to embrace and live out.
Advice on writing and on life from an acclaimed bestselling author:
"Thirty years ago my older brother, who was ten years old at the time, was trying to get a report on birds written that he'd had three months to write. It was due the next day. We were out at our family cabin in Bolinas, and he was at the kitchen table close to tears, surrounded by binder paper and pencils and unopened books on birds, immobilized by the hugeness of the task ahead. Then my father sat down beside him, put his arm around my brother's shoulder, and said, 'Bird by bird, buddy. Just take it bird by bird.'"
Ten years ago, Roy Peter Clark, America's most influential writing teacher, whittled down almost thirty years of experience in journalism, writing, and teaching into a series of fifty short essays on different aspects of writing. In the past decade, Writing Tools has become a classic guidebook for novices and experts alike and remains one of the best loved books on writing available.
Organized into four sections, "Nuts and Bolts," "Special Effects," "Blueprints for Stories," and "Useful Habits," Writing Tools is infused with more than 200 examples from journalism and literature. This new edition includes five brand new, never-before-shared tools.
Accessible, entertaining, inspiring, and above all, useful for every type of writer, from high school student to novelist, Writing Tools is essential reading.
"Darn," the editor hectored, in turn. "I can not publish your novel! It is full of what we in the business call 'really awful writing.'"
"But how shall I absolve this dilemma? I have already read every tome available on how to write well and get published!" The writer tossed his head about, wildly.
"It might help," opined the blonde editor, helpfully, "to ponder how NOT to write a novel, so you might avoid the very thing!"
Many writing books offer sound advice on how to write well. This is not one of those books. On the contrary, this is a collection of terrible, awkward, and laughably unreadable excerpts that will teach you what to avoid—at all costs—if you ever want your novel published.
In How Not to Write a Novel, authors Howard Mittelmark and Sandra Newman distill their 30 years combined experience in teaching, editing, writing, and reviewing fiction to bring you real advice from the other side of the query letter. Rather than telling you how or what to write, they identify the 200 most common mistakes unconsciously made by writers and teach you to recognize, avoid, and amend them. With hilarious "mis-examples" to demonstrate each manuscript-mangling error, they'll help you troubleshoot your beginnings and endings, bad guys, love interests, style, jokes, perspective, voice, and more. As funny as it is useful, this essential how-NOT-to guide will help you get your manuscript out of the slush pile and into the bookstore.
Why is so much writing so bad, and how can we make it better? Is the English language being corrupted by texting and social media? Do the kids today even care about good writing—and why should we care? From the author of The Better Angels of Our Nature and Enlightenment Now.
In this entertaining and eminently practical book, the cognitive scientist, dictionary consultant, and New York Times–bestselling author Steven Pinker rethinks the usage guide for the twenty-first century. Using examples of great and gruesome modern prose while avoiding the scolding tone and Spartan tastes of the classic manuals, he shows how the art of writing can be a form of pleasurable mastery and a fascinating intellectual topic in its own right. The Sense of Style is for writers of all kinds, and for readers who are interested in letters and literature and are curious about the ways in which the sciences of mind can illuminate how language works at its best.
Originally published in 1918, this authoritative and engagingly written manual retains its immediacy and relevance. Strunk begins with the basic rules of usage, offering accessible explanations of correct punctuation and grammar. His advice on the principles of composition cites concrete examples of how to maintain clarity by eliminating redundancy and unnecessary embellishment. In addition, Strunk provides valuable pointers on avoiding common errors in the usage of words and expressions, and in spelling. The greatest book of its kind, this volume is a must for any student or writer.
Here are easily understood guidelines to make film-writing accessible to novices and to help practiced writers improve their scripts. Syd Field pinpoints the structural and stylistic elements essential to every good screenplay. He presents a step-by-step, comprehensive technique for writing the script that will succeed.
•Why are the first ten pages of your script crucially important?
•How do you collaborate successfully with someone else?
•How do you adapt a novel, a play, or an article into a screenplay?
•How do you market your script?
From the Trade Paperback edition.
The Student’s Guide is organized into three sections that lead students through the process of developing and revising a paper. Part 1, "Writing Your Paper," guides students through the research process with discussions of choosing and developing a topic, validating sources, planning arguments, writing drafts, avoiding plagiarism, and presenting evidence in tables and figures. Part 2, "Citing Sources," begins with a succinct introduction to why citation is important and includes sections on the three major styles students might encounter in their work—Chicago, MLA, and APA—all with full coverage of electronic source citation. Part 3, "Style," covers all matters of style important to writers of college papers, from punctuation to spelling to presenting titles, names, and numbers.
With the authority and clarity long associated with the name Turabian, the fourth edition of Student’s Guide to Writing College Papers is both a solid introduction to the research process and a convenient handbook to the best practices of writing college papers. Classroom tested and filled with relevant examples and tips, this is a reference that students, and their teachers, will turn to again and again.
This short, focused guide presents a dozen such principles based on what readers need in order to understand complex information, including concrete subjects, strong verbs, consistent terms, and organized paragraphs. The author, a biologist and an experienced teacher of scientific writing, illustrates each principle with real-life examples of both good and bad writing and shows how to revise bad writing to make it clearer and more concise. She ends each chapter with practice exercises so that readers can come away with new writing skills after just one sitting.
Writing Science in Plain English can help writers at all levels of their academic and professional careers—undergraduate students working on research reports, established scientists writing articles and grant proposals, or agency employees working to follow the Plain Writing Act. This essential resource is the perfect companion for all who seek to write science effectively.
How to Write It is the essential resource for eloquent personal and professional self-expression. Award-winning journalist Sandra E. Lamb transforms even reluctant scribblers into articulate wordsmiths by providing compelling examples of nearly every type and form of written communication.
Completely updated and expanded, the new third edition offers hundreds of handy word, phrase, and sentence lists, precisely crafted sample paragraphs, and professionally designed document layouts. How to Write It is a must-own for students, teachers, authors, journalists, bloggers, managers, and anyone who doesn’t have time to wade through a massive style guide but needs a friendly desk reference.
This is a book for everyone who writes or approves copy: copywriters, account executives, creative directors, freelance writers, advertising managers . . . even entrepreneurs and brand managers. It reveals dozens of copywriting techniques that can help you write ads, commercials, and direct mail that are clear, persuasive, and get more attention—and sell more products.
Among the tips revealed are
• eight headlines that work—and how to use them
• eleven ways to make your copy more readable
• fifteen ways to open a sales letter
• the nine characteristics of successful print ads
• how to build a successful freelance copywriting practice
• fifteen techniques to ensure your e-mail marketing message
This thoroughly revised third edition includes all new essential information for mastering copywriting in the Internet era, including advice on Web- and e-mail-based copywriting, multimedia presentations, and Internet research and source documentation, as well as updated resources. Now more indispensable than ever, The Copywriter's Handbook remains the ultimate guide for people who write or work with copy.
"I don't know a single copywriter whose work would not be improved by reading this book." —David Ogilvy
Here you'll find: - The fundamental elements of fiction craft-character, plot, point of view, etc.-explained clearly and completely - Key concepts illustrated with passages from great works of fiction - The complete text of "Cathedral" by Raymond Carver-a masterpiece of contemporary short fiction that is analyzed throughout the book - Exercises that let you immediately apply what you learn to your own writing
Written by Gotham Writers' Workshop expert instructors and edited by Dean of Faculty Alexander Steele, Writing Fiction offers the same methods and exercises that have earned the school international acclaim.
Once you've read-and written-your way through this book, you'll have a command of craft that will enable you to turn your ideas into effective short stories and novels.
You will be a writer.
The ?exceptional, wonderful, amazing?(Vivian Jenkins Nelson, founder, The International Institute for Interracial Interaction) book that has sold nearly one million copies!
How to Say It® provides clear and practical guidance for what to say?and what not to say?in any situation. Covering everything from business correspondence to personal letters, this is the perfect desk reference for anyone who often finds themselves struggling to find those perfect words for:
? Apologies and sympathy letters
? Letters to the editor
? Cover letters
? Fundraising requests
? Social correspondence, including invitations and Announcements
This new edition features expanded advice for personal and business emails, blogs, and international communication.
The Poet's Companion presents brief essays on the elements of poetry, technique, and suggested subjects for writing, each followed by distinctive writing exercises. The ups and downs of writing life—including self-doubt and writer's block—are here, along with tips about getting published and writing in the electronic age. On your own, this book can be your "teacher," while groups, in or out of the classroom, can profit from sharing weekly assignments.
Accessible and witty, Legal Writing in Plain English draws on real-life writing samples that Garner has gathered through decades of teaching experience. Trenchant advice covers all types of legal materials, from analytical and persuasive writing to legal drafting, and the book’s principles are reinforced by sets of basic, intermediate, and advanced exercises in each section.
In this new edition, Garner preserves the successful structure of the original while adjusting the content to make it even more classroom-friendly. He includes case examples from the past decade and addresses the widespread use of legal documents in electronic formats. His book remains the standard guide for producing the jargon-free language that clients demand and courts reward.
Imagine knowing what the brain craves from every tale it encounters, what fuels the success of any great story, and what keeps readers transfixed. Wired for Story reveals these cognitive secrets—and it’s a game-changer for anyone who has ever set pen to paper.
The vast majority of writing advice focuses on “writing well” as if it were the same as telling a great story. This is exactly where many aspiring writers fail—they strive for beautiful metaphors, authentic dialogue, and interesting characters, losing sight of the one thing that every engaging story must do: ignite the brain’s hardwired desire to learn what happens next. When writers tap into the evolutionary purpose of story and electrify our curiosity, it triggers a delicious dopamine rush that tells us to pay attention. Without it, even the most perfect prose won’t hold anyone’s interest.
Backed by recent breakthroughs in neuroscience as well as examples from novels, screenplays, and short stories, Wired for Story offers a revolutionary look at story as the brain experiences it. Each chapter zeroes in on an aspect of the brain, its corresponding revelation about story, and the way to apply it to your storytelling right now.
The 1,000 Creative Writing Prompts Box Set has over 150 five-star reviews across all books and platforms. This comprehensive collection contains over 800 pages of prompts to get your creative juices flowing for over 90 percent off the cover price!
The massive and innovative box set includes the following five full-length books: 1,000 Creative Writing PromptsFour Seasons of Creative Writing1,000 Character Writing Prompts1,000 Creative Writing Prompts for Holidays1,000 Creative Writing Prompts, Volume 2
There are few things more frustrating than sitting down to write and feeling completely blocked. Fortunately, this box set taps into the power of open-ended questions to get your brain working creatively. These clever, thought-provoking, imaginative prompts will help you blast through writer's block in an instant.
This box set contains thousands of powerful, intriguing, and evocative writing ideas that you can access at any time. Whether you're an aspiring writer or a subject-matter expert, a blogger or a songwriter, a freelancer or a novelist, you're bound to find an idea that works for you in over 800 pages of well-organized writing prompts.
The 1,000 Creative Writing Prompts Box Set is a must-have variety of ideas that will kick your creative roadblock to the curb. For a limited time, get the entire set of books for over 90 percent off the cover price.
Buy the box set today to beat writer's block for good and reclaim your creativity!
No one knows more about screenwriting than Syd Field—and now the ultimate Hollywood insider shares his secrets and expertise, completely updating his bestselling workbook for a new generation of screenwriters. Filled with new material—including fresh insights and anecdotes from the author and analyses of films from Pulp Fiction to Brokeback Mountain—The Screenwriter’s Workbook is your very own hands-on workshop, the book that allows you to participate in the processes that have made Syd Field’s workshops invaluable to beginners and working professionals alike. Follow this workbook through
to the finish, and you’ll end up with a complete and salable script!
Learn how to:
• Define the idea on which your script will be built
• Create the model—the paradigm—that professionals use
• Bring your characters to life
• Write dialogue like a pro
• Structure your screenplay for success from the crucial first pages to the final act
Here are systematic instructions, easy-to-follow exercises, a clear explanation of screenwriting basics, and expert advice at every turn—all the moment-to-moment, line-by-line help you need to transform your initial idea into a professional screenplay that’s earmarked for success.
The Perfect Companion Volume to Syd Field’s Revised and Updated Edition of Screenplay: The Foundations of Screenwriting
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Collins Easy Learning English Vocabulary is a topic-based vocabulary book, covering over 50 topics, from everyday themes such as family, friends, and hobbies, to topics for travel, work, business and study.
The words within each theme are listed alphabetically so that they are easy to find. Each word has a definition, written in simple language, and phonetics, to help the user learn how to say the word.
An 'Examples' section has corpus examples from real English showing important collocations, as well as useful phrases and idioms.
Collins Easy Learning English Vocabulary contains all the vocabulary a learner needs to communicate effectively in English, and is the perfect resource for users who want to build their vocabulary in a methodical way.
“What this book does better than any single book on media history, ethics, or practice is
weave . . . [together] why media audiences have fled and why new technology and megacorporate ownership are putting good journalism at risk.” —Rasmi Simhan, Boston Globe
“Kovach and Rosenstiel’s essays on each [element] are concise gems, filled with insights worthy of becoming axiomatic. . . . The book should become essential reading for journalism professionals and students and for the citizens they aim to serve.” —Carl Sessions Stepp, American Journalism Review
“If you think journalists have no idea what you want . . . here is a book that agrees with you. Better—it has solutions. The Elements of Journalism is written for journalists, but any citizen who wonders why the news seems trivial or uninspiring should read it.” —Marta Salij, Detroit Free Press
The elements of journalism are:
* Journalism’s first obligation is to the truth.
* Its first loyalty is to citizens.
* Its essence is a discipline of verification.
* Its practitioners must maintain an independence from those they cover.
* It must serve as an independent monitor of power.
* It must provide a forum for public criticism and compromise.
* It must strive to make the significant interesting and relevant.
* It must keep the news comprehensive and proportional.
* Its practitioners must be allowed to exercise their personal conscience.
Yes, old authorities are being dismantled, new ones created, and the very nature of knowledge has changed. But seeking the truth remains the purpose of journalism. How do we discern what is reliable? Blur provides a road map, or more specifically, reveals the craft that has been used in newsrooms by the very best journalists for getting at the truth.
In an age when the line between citizen and journalist is becoming increasingly unclear, Blur is a crucial guide for those who want to know what's true.
It’s every novelist’s greatest fear: pouring their blood, sweat, and tears into writing hundreds of pages only to realize that their story has no sense of urgency, no internal logic, and so is a page one rewrite.
The prevailing wisdom in the writing community is that there are just two ways around this problem: pantsing (winging it) and plotting (focusing on the external plot). Story coach Lisa Cron has spent her career discovering why these methods don’t work and coming up with a powerful alternative, based on the science behind what our brains are wired to crave in every story we read (and it’s not what you think).
In Story Genius Cron takes you, step-by-step, through the creation of a novel from the first glimmer of an idea, to a complete multilayered blueprint—including fully realized scenes—that evolves into a first draft with the authority, richness, and command of a riveting sixth or seventh draft.
Are you stumped by split infinitives? Terrified of using "who" when a "whom" is called for? Do you avoid the words "affect" and "effect" altogether?
Grammar Girl is here to help!
Mignon Fogarty, a.k.a. Grammar Girl, is determined to wipe out bad grammar—but she's also determined to make the process as painless as possible. A couple of years ago, she created a weekly podcast to tackle some of the most common mistakes people make while communicating. The podcasts have now been downloaded more than twenty million times, and Mignon has dispensed grammar tips on Oprah and appeared on the pages of The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and USA Today.
Written with the wit, warmth, and accessibility that the podcasts are known for, Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing covers the grammar rules and word-choice guidelines that can confound even the best writers. From "between vs. among" and "although vs. while" to comma splices and misplaced modifiers, Mignon offers memory tricks and clear explanations that will help readers recall and apply those troublesome grammar rules. Chock-full of tips on style, business writing, and effective e-mailing, Grammar Girl's print debut deserves a spot on every communicator's desk.
Collins Easy Learning How to Use English not only explains what English words mean, but also provides information on how the words actually work. The entries are organized alphabetically so that they are easy to find, and each has a clear explanation of when and how to use the word. Each entry also includes examples from the Collins Corpus, which show how the words are really used in everyday English.
The title covers a range of different areas of the English language, to help learners use the language naturally and effectively. It provides clear information on easily confused words, words with similar meanings, and help with words that are often tricky for learners to understand.
With additional information on American English, and warning notes highlighting particular problems, the Collins Easy Learning How to Use English is an indispensible tool for learning English today.
Today’s writers need more spunk than Strunk: whether it's the Great American e-mail, Madison Avenue advertising, or Grammy Award-winning rap lyrics, memorable writing must jump off the page. Copy veteran Constance Hale is on a mission to make creative communication, both the lyrical and the unlawful, an option for everyone.
With its crisp, witty tone, Sin and Syntax covers grammar’s ground rules while revealing countless unconventional syntax secrets (such as how to use—Gasp!—interjections or when to pepper your prose with slang) that make for sinfully good writing. Discover how to:
*Distinguish between words that are “pearls” and words that are “potatoes”
* Avoid “couch potato thinking” and “commitment phobia” when choosing verbs
* Use literary devices such as onomatopoeia, alliteration, and metaphor (and understand what you're doing)
Everyone needs to know how to write stylish prose—students, professionals, and seasoned writers alike. Whether you’re writing to sell, shock, or just sing, Sin and Syntax is the guide you need to improve your command of the English language.
John Gardner was almost as famous as a teacher of creative writing as he was for his own works. In this practical, instructive handbook, based on the courses and seminars that he gave, he explains, simply and cogently, the principles and techniques of good writing. Gardner’s lessons, exemplified with detailed excerpts from classic works of literature, sweep across a complete range of topics—from the nature of aesthetics to the shape of a refined sentence. Written with passion, precision, and a deep respect for the art of writing, Gardner’s book serves by turns as a critic, mentor, and friend. Anyone who has ever thought of taking the step from reader to writer should begin here.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Information Now is an innovative approach to information literacy that will reinvent the way college students think about research. Instead of the typical textbook format, it uses illustrations, humor, and reflective exercises to teach students how to become savvy researchers. Students will learn how to evaluate information, to incorporate it into their existing knowledge base, to wield it effectively, and to understand the ethical issues surrounding its use. Written by two library professionals, it incorporates concepts and skills drawn from the Association of College and Research Libraries’ Information Literacy Competency Standards for Higher Education and their Framework for Information Literacy for Higher Education. Thoroughly researched and highly engaging, Information Now offers the tools that students need to become powerful consumers and creators of information.
Whether used by a high school student tackling a big paper, an undergrad facing the newness of a university library, or a writer wanting to go beyond Google, Information Now is a powerful tool for any researcher’s arsenal.
Just as important, you’ll learn how to prepare your work for today’s market. Drawing on his years of experience as one of the most acclaimed professionals in publishing, Wizards of the Coast editor Athans explains how to set your novel apart--and break into this lucrative field. From devising clever plots and building complex characters to inventing original technologies and crafting alien civilizations, Athans gives you the techniques you need to write strong, saleable narratives.
Plus! Athans applies all of these critical lessons together in an unprecedented deconstruction of a never-before-published tale by the one and only R. A. Salvatore!
There are books on writing science fiction and fantasy, and then there’s this book--the only one you need to create strange, wonderful worlds for your own universe of readers!
Punctuate with Confidence—No Matter the Style
Confused about punctuation? There’s a reason. Everywhere you turn, publications seem to follow different rules on everything from possessive apostrophes to hyphens to serial commas. Then there are all the gray areas of punctuation—situations the rule books gloss over or never mention at all. At last, help has arrived.
This complete reference guide from grammar columnist June Casagrande covers the basic rules of punctuation plus the finer points not addressed anywhere else, offering clear answers to perplexing questions about semicolons, quotation marks, periods, apostrophes, and more. Better yet, this is the only guide that uses handy icons to show how punctuation rules differ for book, news, academic, and science styles—so you can boldly switch between essays, online newsletters, reports, fiction, and magazine and news articles.
This handbook also features rulings from an expert “Punctuation Panel” so you can see how working pros approach sticky situations. And the second half of the book features an alphabetical master list of commonly punctuated terms worth its weight in gold, combining rulings from the major style guides and showing exactly where they differ. With The Best Punctuation Book, Period, you’ll be able to handle any punctuation predicament in a flash—and with aplomb.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
The country’s most prominent journalists and nonfiction authors gather each year at Harvard’s Nieman Conference on Narrative Journalism. Telling True Stories presents their best advice—covering everything from finding a good topic, to structuring narrative stories, to writing and selling your first book. More than fifty well-known writers offer their most powerful tips, including:
• Tom Wolfe on the emotional core of the story
• Gay Talese on writing about private lives
• Malcolm Gladwell on the limits of profiles
• Nora Ephron on narrative writing and screenwriters
• Alma Guillermoprieto on telling the story and telling the truth
• Dozens of Pulitzer Prize–winning journalists from the Atlantic Monthly, New Yorker, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post and more . . .
The essays contain important counsel for new and career journalists, as well as for freelance writers, radio producers, and memoirists. Packed with refreshingly candid and insightful recommendations, Telling True Stories will show anyone fascinated by the art of writing nonfiction how to bring people, scenes, and ideas to life on the page.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Stephen Fry believes that if one can speak and read English, one can write poetry. In The Ode Less Travelled, he invites readers to discover the delights of writing poetry for pleasure and provides the tools and confidence to get started. Through enjoyable exercises, witty insights, and simple step-by-step advice, Fry introduces the concepts of Metre, Rhyme, Form, Diction, and Poetics.
Most of us have never been taught to read or write poetry, and so it can seem mysterious and intimidating. But Fry, a wonderfully competent, engaging teacher and a writer of poetry himself, sets out to correct this problem by explaining the various elements of poetry in simple terms, without condescension. Fry?s method works, and his enthusiasm is contagious as he explores different forms of poetry: the haiku, the ballad, the villanelle, and the sonnet, among many others. Along the way, he introduces us to poets we?ve heard of but never read. The Ode Less Travelled is not just the survey course you never took in college, it?s a lively celebration of poetry that makes even the most reluctant reader want to pick up a pencil and give it a try.
In this new edition of Woe Is I, Patricia T. O’Conner unties the knottiest grammar tangles and displays the same lively humor that has charmed and enlightened grateful readers for years. With new chapters on spelling and punctuation, and fresh insights into the rights, wrongs, and maybes of English grammar and usage, Woe Is I offers down-to-earth explanations and plain-English solutions to the language mysteries that bedevil all of us.
Great writing isn’t born, it’s built—sentence by sentence. But too many writers—and writing guides—overlook this most important unit. The result? Manuscripts that will never be published and writing careers that will never begin.
With chapters on “Conjunctions That Kill” and “Words Gone Wild,” this lighthearted guide is perfect for anyone who’s dead serious about writing, from aspiring novelists to nonfiction writers, conscientious students to cheeky literati. So roll up your sleeves and prepare to craft one bold, effective sentence after another. Your readers will thank you.
No one knows grammar like Michael Strumpf. For over a quarter of a century, as creator and proprietor of the National Grammar Hot Line, he helped thousands of callers from every corner of the globe tackle the thorniest issues of English grammar. Now, in The Grammar Bible, he has created an eminently useful guide to better speaking and writing.
Unlike other grammar manuals, The Grammar Bible is driven by the actual questions Professor Strumpf encountered during his years of teaching and fielding phone calls from anxious writers, conscientious students, and perplexed editors, including such perennial quandaries as
o Where do I put this comma?
o What case should this pronoun be in?
o How do I form the possessive of Dickens?
Professor Strumpf explains these and other language issues with wit and wisdom, showing how to speak more clearly and write more impressively by avoiding common errors and following the principles of good grammar. Whether you need a comprehensive review of the subjunctive mood or simply want to know which form of a verb to use, The Grammar Bible is a practical guide that will enlighten, educate, and entertain.
Long considered the bible for storytellers, Aristotle's Poetics is a fixture of college courses on everything from fiction writing to dramatic theory. Now Michael Tierno shows how this great work can be an invaluable resource to screenwriters or anyone interested in studying plot structure. In carefully organized chapters, Tierno breaks down the fundamentals of screenwriting, highlighting particular aspects of Aristotle's work. Then, using examples from some of the best movies ever made, he demonstrates how to apply these ancient insights to modern-day screenwriting. This user-friendly guide covers a multitude of topics, from plotting and subplotting to dialogue and dramatic unity. Writing in a highly readable, informal tone, Tierno makes Aristotle's monumental work accessible to beginners and pros alike in areas such as screenwriting, film theory, fiction, and playwriting.
Dissertation writers need strong, practical advice, as well as someone to assure them that their struggles aren't unique. Joan Bolker, midwife to more than one hundred dissertations and co-founder of the Harvard Writing Center, offers invaluable suggestions for the graduate-student writer. Using positive reinforcement, she begins by reminding thesis writers that being able to devote themselves to a project that truly interests them can be a pleasurable adventure. She encourages them to pay close attention to their writing method in order to discover their individual work strategies that promote productivity; to stop feeling fearful that they may disappoint their advisors or family members; and to tailor their theses to their own writing style and personality needs. Using field-tested strategies she assists the student through the entire thesis-writing process, offering advice on choosing a topic and an advisor, on disciplining one's self to work at least fifteen minutes each day; setting short-term deadlines, on revising and defing the thesis, and on life and publication after the dissertation. Bolker makes writing the dissertation an enjoyable challenge.
Clean, Well-Lighted Sentences is a small, engaging book that sits at your desk and gives golden advice. It knows precisely what your questions are, answers them clearly, makes sure you understand, and stops. What an unusual find: a grammar and punctuation guide that speaks only about issues that trouble—nothing more. Perfectly suited to anyone who has to write, from high-school and college students to senior-level executives.
You will find one of the great unspoken secrets of craftsmanship in Chapter 5, called "Markers: The Key to Swift Characterization." In Chapter 7, Stein reveals for he first time in print the wonderful system for creating instant conflict developed in the Playwrights Group of the Actors Studio, of which he was a founder. In "Secrets of Good Dialogue," the premier teacher of dialogue gives you the instantly useable techniques that not only make verbal exchanges exciting but that move the story forward immediately. You won't need to struggle with flashbacks or background material after you've read Chapter 14, which shows you how to bring background into the foreground.
Writers of both fiction and nonfiction will relish the amphetamines for speeding up pace, and the many ways to liposuction flab, as well as how to tap originality and recognize what successful titles have in common. You'll discover literary values that enhance writing, providing depth and resonance. You'll bless the day you read Chapters 32 and 33 and discover why revising by starting at page one can be a serious mistake, and how to revise without growing cold on your manuscript.
In the pages of this book, nonfiction writers will find a passport to the new revolution in journalism and a guide to using the techniques of fiction to enhance nonfiction. Fresh, useful, informative, and fun to read and reread, Stein on Writing is a book you will mark up, dog-ear, and cherish.
From the best-selling author of Devotion and Slow Motion comes a witty, heartfelt, and practical look at the exhilarating and challenging process of storytelling. At once a memoir, meditation on the artistic process, and advice on craft, Still Writing is an intimate and eloquent companion to living a creative life.
Through a blend of deeply personal stories about what formed her as a writer, tales from other authors, and a searching look at her own creative process, Shapiro offers her gift to writers everywhere: an elegant guide of hard-won wisdom and advice for staying the course. “The writer’s life requires courage, patience, empathy, openness. It requires the ability to be alone with oneself. Gentle with oneself. To be disciplined, and at the same time, take risks.” Writers—and anyone with an artistic temperament—will find inspiration and comfort in these pages. Offering lessons learned over twenty years of teaching and writing, Shapiro brings her own revealing insights to weave an indispensable almanac for modern writers.
Like Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird, Virginia Woolf’s A Writer’s Diary, and Stephen King’s On Writing, Dani Shapiro’s Still Writing is a lodestar for aspiring scribes and an eloquent memoir of the writing life.
No one can teach talent, but the practical skills of the professional writer's craft can certainly be taught. The correct and imaginative use of these kills can shorten any beginner's apprenticeship by years.
This is the book for writers who want to turn rejection slips into cashable checks.
This invaluable guide is suitable for learners of English wishing to improve their accuracy and avoid the most basic mistakes.
The book offers help with Spelling and Punctuation, and covers the major parts of speech in depth. It offers clear guidance on word choice and confusable words. A comprehensive exercise section also reinforces the key points for each thematic section.
What’s more, its clear, thematic layout makes information easy to find and understand.
Suitable for learners of English with a pre-intermediate to intermediate level of English (A2-B2), but who want to improve their accuracy by overcoming the most common mistakes made by non-native speakers of English.
The only comprehensive Creative Writing title on the market that goes beyond introducing the basic genres to offering a complete journey along the writing path, including material on editing, redrafting and polishing a piece of work. Featuring the unique Workshop exercises to encourage readers to hone their work rather than just progressing through a number of exercises.
Takes the reader from complete beginner or committed amateur to the point you've completed, edited and redrafted your work and are ready for publication.
ABOUT THE SERIES
The Teach Yourself Creative Writing series helps aspiring authors tell their story. Covering a range of genres from science fiction and romantic novels, to illustrated children's books and comedy, this series is packed with advice, exercises and tips for unlocking creativity and improving your writing. And because we know how daunting the blank page can be, we set up the Just Write online community at tyjustwrite, for budding authors and successful writers to connect and share.
Natalie Goldberg, author of the bestselling Writing Down the Bones, shares her invaluable insight into writing as a source of creative power, and the daily ins and outs of the writer’s task. Topics include balancing mundane responsibilities with a commitment to writing; knowing when to take risks as a writer and a human being; coming to terms with success, failure, and loss; and learning self-acceptance—both in life and art. Thought-provoking and practical, Wild Mind provides an abundance of suggestions for keeping the writing life vital and active, and includes more than thirty provocative “try this” exercises as jump-starters to get your pen moving. This ebook features an illustrated biography of Natalie Goldberg, including rare photos and never-before-seen documents from the author’s personal collection.
Draft No. 4 is a master class on the writer’s craft. In a series of playful, expertly wrought essays, John McPhee shares insights he has gathered over his career and has refined while teaching at Princeton University, where he has nurtured some of the most esteemed writers of recent decades. McPhee offers definitive guidance in the decisions regarding arrangement, diction, and tone that shape nonfiction pieces, and he presents extracts from his work, subjecting them to wry scrutiny. In one essay, he considers the delicate art of getting sources to tell you what they might not otherwise reveal. In another, he discusses how to use flashback to place a bear encounter in a travel narrative while observing that “readers are not supposed to notice the structure. It is meant to be about as visible as someone’s bones.” The result is a vivid depiction of the writing process, from reporting to drafting to revising—and revising, and revising.
Draft No. 4 is enriched by multiple diagrams and by personal anecdotes and charming reflections on the life of a writer. McPhee describes his enduring relationships with The New Yorker and Farrar, Straus and Giroux, and recalls his early years at Time magazine. Throughout, Draft No. 4 is enlivened by his keen sense of writing as a way of being in the world.
The book provides a comprehensive look at screenwriting, covering all the fundamentals (plot, character, scenes, dialogue, etc.) and such crucial-but seldom discussed-topics as description, voice, tone, and theme. These concepts are illustrated through analysis of five brilliant screenplays-Die Hard, Thelma & Louise, Tootsie, Sideways, and The Shawshank Redemption. Also included are writing assignments and step-by-step tasks that take writers from rough idea to polished screenplay. Written by Gotham Writers' Workshop expert instructors, Writing Movies offers the same winning style and clarity of presentation that have made a success of Gotham's previous book Writing Fiction, which is now in its 7th printing.
Named the "best class for screenwriters" in New York City by MovieMaker Magazine, Gotham Writers' Workshop is America's leading private creative writing school, offering classes in Manhattan and on the Web at www.WritingClasses.com. The school's interactive online classes, selected as "Best of the Web" by Forbes, have attracted thousands of aspiring writers from across the United States and more than sixty countries.
Great sentences pivot on great verbs. In Vex, Hex, Smash, Smooch, Constance Hale, best-selling author of Sin and Syntax, zeroes in on verbs that make bad writing sour and good writing sing. Each chapter in Vex, Hex, Smash, Smooch features four sections: “Vex” tackles tough syntax, “Hex” debunks myths about verbs, “Smash” warns of bad writing habits, and “Smooch” showcases exemplary writing. A veteran journalist and writing teacher, Hale peppers her advice with pop-culture references and adapts her expertise for writers of every level. With examples ranging from the tangled clauses of Henry James and the piercing insight of Joan Didion to the punchy gerunds of the Coen brothers and the passive verbs of CEOs on trial, Vex, Hex, Smash, Smooch offers a reenergized take on the “little despot of the sentence.”
In this book, grammar savant Susan Thurman guides you through the complexities of spelling, usage, and style in the English language. Her comprehensive drills show you how to:Find the right wordsIdentify the parts of speechRecognize elements of a good sentenceAvoid common grammatical and punctuation mistakesWrite clearly and directly
With more than 150 exercises and in-depth lessons, this workbook will quickly become your go-to resource for all your writing needs.
- Shape your text for online reading
- Construct clear and compelling copy
- Write eye-catching and effective headings
- Develop your site's unique voice
- Streamline text for mobile users
- Optimize webpages to boost your chances of appearing in search results
- Create better blogs and newsletters
- Learn easy fixes for your writing mistakes
- Write clear user-interface text
This essential sourcebook—based on internal editorial practices that have helped Yahoo! writers and editors for the last fifteen years—is now at your fingertips.
Frey urges writers to aim high-not to try to write a good-enough-to-get-published mystery, but a damn good mystery. A damn good mystery is first a dramatic novel, Frey insists-a dramatic novel with living, breathing characters-and he shows his readers how to create a living, breathing, believable character who will be clever and resourceful, willful and resolute, and will be what Frey calls "the author of the plot behind the plot."
Frey then shows, in his well-known, entertaining, and accessible (and often humorous) style , how the characters-the entire ensemble, including the murderer, the detective, the authorities, the victims, the suspects, the witnesses and the bystanders-create a complete and coherent world.
Exploring both the on-stage action and the behind-the-scenes intrigue, Frey shows prospective writers how to build a fleshed-out, believable, and logical world. He shows them exactly which parts of that world show up in the pages of a damn good mystery-and which parts are held back just long enough to keep the reader guessing.
This is an indispensable step-by-step guide for anyone who's ever dreamed of writing a damn good mystery.