What We Ache For by Oriah Mountain Dreamer
I love the beautiful language in this book that explores the “necessity and urgency” of creativity in our lives.
Writing Alone and With Others – Pat Schneider
This book is the basis for the Amherst Writers and Artists writing workshop model (which is what I use in my workshops). In it Pat Schneider addresses the challenges the writer faces when beginning (sometimes over and over) and suggests ways to keep going. The book is full of prompts and exercises to keep us writers engaged and motivated.
The Art of War for Writers by James Scott Bell
Following Sun Tzu’s example, this book covers the mental game of writing (reconnaissance), craft (tactics) and advice on the publishing world (strategy). Lots of good stuff.
Do the Work – Steven Pressfield
Resistance can (and probably will)show up at some point in any creative endeavor. Pressfield normalizes and helps you get around, over, thorough it. Easy, quick and entertaining reading
Writing on Both Sides of The Brain by Henriette Anne Klauser
Ultimately, writing involves both the left and right hemisphere of our brain and Klauser helps the writer travel easily between the two. I love her style.
Poem Crazy by Susan Goldsmith Wooldridge
To me, writing is about filling up on words and images and impressions, seeing with different eyes. Wooldridge talks about gathering words and playing with language and brings that way of thinking into everyday life. There’s a poet inside everyone!
Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott
This is on everyone’s list for a reason. It’s a classic and required reading for anyone who wants to live life in creative space.
Stein on Writing by Sol Stein
Tons of great advice on craft for both fiction and non-fiction writers.
And a bonus favorite:
The American Heritage College English Dictionary (or any good dictionary and thesaurus)
Yes, I’m a word nerd. I love a big heavy dictionary with its thin pages and can get lost in it. Whether it’s online or in hand a good dictionary and thesaurus belongs in a writer’s toolbox.
What are your favorite books for getting your creativity going?
Kathy Kane blogs about the creative process in the everyday, in writing and in the magical transition to the second half of life.
Follow The Blog