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What are some must-read books for aspiring writers?

I'm looking more for actual stories rather than books on writing specifically. As of now, most of my inspiration comes from other mediums (games, comics, tv) and I don't feel like I read enough.

Writing | 👁 818 | Posted 2018-03-07 | Share on Facebook | Twitter | Google+

| Modified: 2018-03-07 | Author:

16 Comments

the_trout 2 years ago

The Things They Carried -- Tim O'Brien.

FleshOfMortals 2 years ago

Anne Lammots Bird by Bird will definitely help you refine your process. Roy Peter Clarks How to Write Short is fantastic for prose. And any editor will weep tears of joy if you read eats, shoots, and leaves and its necessary if you self-publish. Its also just a fun bit of writing.

AtlasOP 2 years ago

It all depends on what you yourself like to write. If you like horror, read a Stephen King novel or a story from H.P Lovecraft. Its all on your preferences, it takes time for writers to be good at multiple genres.

annatherien 2 years ago

Anne Lamott, Bird by Bird.

[deleted] 2 years ago

[deleted]

Jhall12 2 years ago

Wonderful series. I just started Golden Son and I'm hype!

theblartist 2 years ago

For a book on writing itself, Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott. One of the funniest and best books Ive ever read.

brian_naslund 2 years ago

On Writing by Stephen King. Full of great insight and generally just an entertaining read.

Oberon_Swanson 2 years ago

There are so many "must-read books for writers" no writer could actually read them all. That doesn't mean these books are undeserving of the title either. I would suggest: Look at some reputable list of the top 100 novels of all time. Read the 30 of them that interest you most. Look at the top 20 all-time classics in your genre, read 10 of them. If they are mega-long series, pick three mega-long series and find five stand-alone novels to read as well. That's right you have to read more books of your genre if your genre likes mega-long series. Look at the top 10 bestselling novels in your genre from the past 5 years, read 5 of them. Pick fifteen books on the craft of writing that interest you and read them. Pick five personal areas of interest and read 5 of the 10 most highly-rated books on that subject. Areas of interest might be history, philosophy, finance, psychology, whatever. Do this even if you plan on writing fiction. Just read until you're not a total dumbass. Then pick five more areas of interest and read three books on each subject. This is just a rough guide. Adjust the numbers as you see fit. Yes that is a lot of reading. If you want to make things people read for a living you have to be very very good at it as your competition is in the millions. I would also recommend not waiting until you are 'ready to write' to start writing. Start writing now and you can adapt the lessons you learn from other books as you go.

Water_Vole 2 years ago

Anything and everything. Read genres you like, and those you don't. Familiarise yourself with all styles and authors. Review books on Amazon to make yourself think about how and why they work or do not work. Immerse yourself in words. I cannot understand anyone who wants to write not reading all the time.

ablashak 2 years ago

Red Rising trilogy by Pierce Brown. I picked it up on a whim and it was one of my best decisions. I highly recommend.

rrauwl 2 years ago

In your genres, some of the key novels are Lord of the Rings, the Books of Amber, Dune, the Foundation series, Neuromancer, Harry Potter, and Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser. There are dozens upon dozens more of course, but I consider the above an excellent crash course in SF/F. They touch on most of the major sub-genres and themes that today's authors draw upon, and will help you find even MORE books that you can study once you see what you like. For the writing itself, again it will depend on you. But I'm an 'On Writing' guy. The few, the proud, the insane. :)

jarmzet 2 years ago

For sci-fi, basically anything on this list would be a good read: http://scifilists.sffjazz.com/lists_books_rank1.html You'll find a lot of different kinds of books on that list. For example, "The Day of the Triffids" is set on Earth and has large, dangerous plants that walk around. It might sound stupid, but the book is really good. "Snow Crash" is one of the fastest moving books I've ever read. I like reading acclaimed books and trying to figure out what people like about them. The reasons are usually different for each book.

Speedwizard106 2 years ago

Also superhero stuff. Not sure if that counts as sci-fi.

Speedwizard106 2 years ago

Fantasy and Sci-fi

Charleyblogs 2 years ago

Im not sure theres a straightforward answer to this. In my experience it rests heavily on what you want to write. Is there a specific genre youre attracted to?


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