Wednesday, July 8, 2009

An Author's Life: Books about Writing (XII)

Last night's fun -- and I mean that with all seriousness -- included joining Dawn Goldberg of for "Writing Hour," her monthly tele-chat. (First Tuesday of the month; follow Dawn on Twitter.)

It doesn't matter whether I'm chatting with writers who have been publishing forever or folks just starting out, we seem to share the same concerns: how to make the time, how to hunker down, how to manage the naysayers. Relative to the that last point, I found myself referencing Julia Cameron's classic, The Artist's Way (1992) which, in Chapter Two, zooms in on the problem of "poisonous playmates" and "crazymakers."

While I was at it, I mentioned several other books about writing by writers. Kimberly (also on Twitter) asked if I'd posted that list on my website., but here it is now, on my blog! With the possible exception of Brenda Ueland's classic, most of these books will probably be familiar to writers at all levels of experience. All, for different reasons, had a significant impact on my authorial life. They're listed in the order I read them, a project starting in 1990. Although I'd been published by magazines since the late 1970s, the first of my seven books wasn't published until 1998.

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