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Icarus 06-16-2006 03:33 PM

Writing Resources (Grammar, Punctuation, etc.)
[This thread has been created in order to ease the searching process for proper, helpful resources. If you have a writing resourse that you think is highly benefitable, then please share it here. Resources include everything from books to web pages.]

My personal favorite guide is the invaluable A Writer's Reference by Diana Hacker. You all should own one; if you don't, buy one immediately.

By far the easiest book I've come across, this handbook is great for writers at all levels as well as students. The sections on proper citations have been particularly useful to me.

If you choose to trust the Brits :p, another book that has received rave reviews is Eats, Shoots & Leaves by Lynne Truss.

To get you in the mood:

A panda walks into a cafe. He orders a sandwich, eats it, then draws a gun and fires two shots in the air.

'Why?' asks the confused waiter, as the panda makes towards the exit. The panda produces a badly punctuated wildlife manual and tosses it over his shoulder.

'I'm a panda,' he says, at the door. 'Look it up.'

The waiter turns to the relevant entry and, sure enough, finds an explanation.

'Panda. Large black-and-white bear-like mammal, native to China. Eats, shoots and leaves.'

kal 06-16-2006 03:36 PM

I love Eats Shoots and Leaves! amazing book, funny and informative.

riverwriter 06-18-2006 04:50 AM

As I have mentioned elsewhere, Babette Deutsch's Poetry Handbook — A Dictionary of Terms is an excellent poetry reference. Just browsing it offers would-be poets a leg up, not just on terms, but on what goes into a poem, and what poets do. I have used mine since I got it in the early 1960s, when it cost $4.95 CDN. It is still in print from Funk & Wagnalls or Harper Collins, and I am sure from a multitude of second hand bookstores. Here is the new cover; my old cover is Black print on double green:


Icarus 06-22-2006 12:22 PM

Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg
I'm currently reading, or I should say using, this book. It has very short chapters (often a page or two) focusing on small tips. I used to loathe books like these but this one has many useful suggestions and it has really gotten me thinking about the way I approach my writing.

For more information, click here.

Cordatus 10-22-2006 05:32 AM

Here are a few resources I found very helpful:

Icarus 02-13-2007 12:25 PM


Originally Posted by Cordatus (Post 64187)

If you can, purchase the illustrated version. I received it over the holidays and found it rather amusing. A nice change from dry writing books.

Cordatus 02-13-2007 01:29 PM

I'll say.

I have the "dry" one, and it's as boring as the pdf version.

HoiLei 07-27-2008 11:10 AM

World Wide Words
Michael Quinion, a field researcher for the Oxford English Dictionary, has a great site for those interested in etymology (word histories), English around the world, and fun new vocab. It's called World Wide Words. You can sign up for his newsletter here.

It's not a go-to resource like a guide is, but it is interesting. I've learned a lot about English through it. I also appreciate his prompt replies to questions and comments.


Crystalwizard 09-01-2008 06:02 PM

I rather like this page of grammar rules


Rackham 09-01-2008 09:25 PM

I agree. The Elements of Style is among the best.

We used English Grammar for the Utterly Confused in my Grammar class last semester and I found it to be very informative and easy to comprehend.

C.F. Jackson 09-23-2008 12:14 PM

Getting and Staying Organized
I found this resource priceless
and it's free.

We as authors often time lose
our way and find it difficult to
reach those desired goals and

So check out www.Simpleology.com
and begin focusing and directing
your time and energy on getting
that book project complete.

More importantly. getting your
entire life in order.

'm going through the steps again
for a 2nd time and it's even better.

I hope someone find value in it! :)

Continue to make it happen!

Won't Be Denied,
C.F. Jackson

Soni 02-26-2009 02:55 AM

I am from India and I have been a member of Chillifreeze, an Indian writers website. They provide writers with a whole variety of options, from taking courses and authoring them, expert review and editing services, writing related articles and writer interviews. I find this website a very useful resource as It provides a platform for new and experienced writers to come together.

kimba 05-30-2009 08:46 PM

Character dossier
1 Attachment(s)
Here's a character dossier I put together using Microsoft Excel and saved as a pdf file. I hope it helps with your character planning. :)

Don Harold 11-26-2009 11:10 PM

Thanks for providing all those writing resources. Let me also share this very helpful blog site. It practically contains easy writing tips and strategies. If you have time, visit writersdepot.com. Hope you find my link helpful.

Acanro Seer 03-24-2010 03:28 AM

I use "The Elements of Style" as my reference. However, I consider them more as guideline than roles, for you can start a sentence with a conjunction, split an infinitive, and end a sentence with a preposition. But, one has to know the rules before they can break them.

rosiewriter 08-18-2010 07:48 PM

I've posted this in another thread as well, but the book Everything I Know About Writing by Australian author John Marsden is a really great, easy book to help get the writing process started.

butterbescotch 03-18-2011 04:58 AM

I think I will have a go on eat shoots and leaves.
Thanks for the recommendation!

Emmaline 03-29-2012 06:09 PM

My personal favorite writing book is The Gotham Writers' Workshop's Writing Fiction. It helped me develop my creative writing style a lot. There are chapters on characters, plot, point of view, description, dialogue, setting, pacing, voice, theme, revision, and publishing. A very helpful book that I use and re-read frequently.

flyingtart 04-25-2012 03:54 AM

Just a heads up that The Writers Idea Book 10th Anniversary Edition: How to Develop Great Ideas for Fiction, Non-Fiction, Poetry and Screenplays (Kindle Edition) by Jack Heffron is currently available free:

Link to Amazon UK.

2Men&aLoveStory 09-14-2012 10:33 PM

Just a newbie but I'm loving this thread because I spend a lot of time looking for helpful reference books.

The most useful I've found so far is the Write Great Fiction series. I've read Plot by Ansen Dibell, Beginnings, Middles, and Ends by Nancy Kress, and Character, Emotion, and Viewpoint also by Nancy Kress. I would highly recommend all of the above. I read Description and Setting by Ron Rozelle, but while I ran copies of a few useful entries, I wouldn't put this at the top of the list.

Has anyone here read The Art of War For Writers or How Not To Write a Novel? I'm considering both but if anyone can offer a second opinion, it would be greatly appreciated.

KellerMedia 10-10-2012 09:29 AM

For short story writers, Ron Carlson Writes a Story is a fantastic resource. It's informative and a fun, quick read!

Amanda786 12-05-2012 06:50 AM


Originally Posted by KellerMedia (Post 537036)
For short story writers, Ron Carlson Writes a Story is a fantastic resource. It's informative and a fun, quick read!

I agree that's good resource for short story writers.

Jakeg 11-17-2013 01:47 PM

I am happy I found this site, so much useful information and people sharing them! Thank you!

Publishing Push 09-23-2015 01:48 AM

Lessons From 200+ Book Marketing Campaigns
Our most popular post where we summarised some of the key takeaways from running over 200+ book marketing campaigns.

You can find it by heading to our website. We aren't able to post links yet but just search Publishing Push 200+ Book Marketing Campaigns

Hope it helps :)

John Anthony 07-18-2016 11:19 PM

You can find huge amount of online resources related to writing all over the web. Also I suggest everyone to practice regularly to improve writing skills.

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