Tag Archives: writing a book

3 Books to Read Before Writing Your Own

Three, three, three reviews in one! Not just for writing a memoir but creative non-fiction and/or a book “that makes a difference.”

Writing a Book That Makes a Difference by Philip Gerard

No instruction manual can really tell you how your book should be written. In fact, many can dull your senses and arouse doubts in your mind about structure, organization and other aspects of how you want to tell your story. Nonetheless, desiring to do exactly what the title of this book describes, “writing a book that makes a difference,” I found it very useful in stimulating my thinking. It helped rather than hindered my choices, although, as I suggested, it really couldn’t tell me what I needed to do. Only after reading many such books did the winnowing process of my own brain absorb a little from this and a little from that. So if you too want to write such a book, go ahead and buy or at least read this early on in the process.

Writing Creative NonfictionThis book may not be 100% comprehensive (a tad redundant, perhaps), but if there is any other one out there that has more to offer on addressing the varieties of style, structure, form and the creative nonfiction process, I haven’t seen it. Being new to the business in 2003 when I began working on Waiting for Westmoreland in earnest, I found the instuctions and insights illuminating, inspiring and confusing all at once. How to choose?! I felt like Alice on her journey after the rabbit. Still, it gave me plenty of techniques to consider–that would not have been as readily discernible had I simply tried to read every book of actual creative nonfiction I could get my hands on.

Writing the Memoir by Judith BarringtonLast but not least, a book directly about writing a memoir.

An excellent book answering FAQs that you didn’t know you had or if you did, you didn’t know how to ask them. As I was crafting my own memoir, this book helped guide me on the path.

Do You Have a Book in You?

X-ray shows book inside man in doctor's office
Cartoon from Nicholas Rossis, https://plus.google.com/+NicholasRossis

          Aside from the humor, this seems like something many people might believe–even aspire to. Of course, it’s not quite as simple as the novice or non-writer could wish. Still, for many who are accustomed to writing reports, correspondence, analyses and other words it is not far-fetched. Watch for a new series on this beginning in the February Eagle Peak Quarterly. Why mention it now? I loved the cartoon so much that my friend Nicholas posted on Google + that I just had to jump on it now. In the meantime, I offer this: For those with expertise in one subject area or another, writing and marketing a non-fiction book can be easier than a first time novel. Tailor it to the audience that your work already attracts and you have a head start. I will try to introduce a little more from time to time until Groundhog Day comes along.

You Can Write and Publish a Book, 2

A couple weeks ago I said that “Yes, you can write and publish a book.” To follow up on that topic, beyond will and determination I mentioned that some research will be required. Like anything else, you get out of writing what you put into it. Little effort produces little result. Ask yourself what and why before you get too far along in that effort. Continue reading You Can Write and Publish a Book, 2