Yesterday I gave you a list of books to inspire and motivate writers. Today's list contains books (and one website) to help you become a better writer. You might also want to check out the comments from yesterday's post. There are additional recommendations from several blogger friends.
Some of these books are aimed at mystery writers but not all. I particularly recommend the books by Sol Stein and Chris Roerden.
Don’t Murder Your Mystery (2006) – or Don’t Sabotage Your Submission (2008) by Chris Roerden. Bella Rosa Books (Agatha Award for Best Nonfiction Book).
The Elements of Mystery Fiction by William G. Tapply. (2006), Poisoned Pen Press.
The Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr. and E. B. White. There are newer editions, including an illustrated version, but the one I have is the second edition (1972) Macmillan.
Grammar Girl’s Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing by Mignon Fogarty (2008) Holt.
Guide to Grammar and Writing. Website sponsored by the Capital Community College Foundation.
How to Write a Damn Good Mystery: A Practical Step-by-Step Guide from Inspiration to Finished Manuscript by James N. Frey (2004), St. Martin’s Press. Also How to Write a Damn Good Novel.
How Not to Write a Novel by Howard Mittelmark and Sandra Newman (2008) HarperCollins.
Lessons From a Lifetime of Writing: A Novelist Looks At His Craft by David Morrell (2002) Writers Digest Books.
Murder and Mayhem: A Doctor Answers Medical and Forensic Questions for Mystery Writers by D. P. Lyle, M.D. (2003) Thomas Dunne Books.
Police Procedure & Investigation: A Guide for Writers by Lee Lofland (2007) Writers Digest Books.
Stein On Writing: A Master Editor of Some of the Most Successful Writers of Our Century Shares His Craft Techniques and Strategies by Sol Stein (2005), St. Martin's Press.
I would also like to add two books by agent Donald Maass: Writing the Breakout Novel (2002) and The Fire in Fiction (2009), both from F&W Media.
Do you have other favorites you'd like to recommend?