author, creative writing, writing

3 ‘Must-Have’ Books for Writers

Morning wonderful writers!
I hope you are all well and enjoying December so far. I love December, but it’s been pretty hectic for me so far!

This week I’d like to offer a simple blog post, that contains three amazing books that I think all writers should know about. It’s not too late to get these on your Christmas list!!! (Failing that, you can snap them up in the January sales.) Let’s take a look…

1. On Writing – Stephen King

Let’s be honest, no list was ever going to exclude this masterpiece. Many writers find annoyance in books that tell you “how to write a novel” because the ideas and opinions are usually rather subjective, and everyone uses different rules and methods. In On Writing Stephen King does attempt to tell you how to write a novel, but does offer useful tips and straight talking facts to get you going.

I was really inspired by this book. I think any writer, fan of King or not, can appreciate how hard he works in his craft. He produces books on a huge scale, and this book is a brilliant memoir to his life as a writer. Most writers probably have this book already, but I couldn’t start this list with it. Besides, if you don’t have it, why not? Grab a copy ASAP!


2. The Crime Writer’s Guide to Police Practice and Procedure – Michael O’Byrne

This book has been my absolute life saver while writing my current novel. O’Byrne neatly presents all aspects of police procedure and lays it out in a way that is specifically for crime writers. With focus on all major crime types including murder, you can easily find all the relevant information to make sure your novel is factually correct.

As someone with limited knowledge of police procedure, minus dramatised versions you see on TV, this book has been incredible. I should note that this particular book is only based on British procedures. However, if you’re writing about crime based in another country you may find someone has put a similar book together.


3. The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide To Character Expression – Angela Ackerman and Becca Puglisi

This book is fantastic. They have a whole range in this series, including focus on positive character traits, negative character traits, different settings and spaces…the list is endless!

This one, I love. It has a page dedicated to every major emotion you can think of. It then breaks down lists of internal symptoms, external symptoms, physical side effects and long term effects of each emotion. It’s perfect for helping you show not tell, because you can present your characters state of mind by describing their movements, their speech or how they feel inside at the time. I really need to get myself more of these books, as they can give you that inspiration boost when your own imagination is struggling.


Will any of these make your list? I’d love to hear if you have any of these books already, or if there’s a book you’d recommend. Please comment below so that I can check out your suggestions!

Until then,
Keep writing,

10 thoughts on “3 ‘Must-Have’ Books for Writers”

    1. Thank you 🙂
      I really love the guide to character expression. If I’m having writer’s block, reading the long term effects of various emotions can inspire me to add a new dimension to my characters and keep mapping out their story. Worth a go for sure!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I have 1 & 3, so I’m not doing too bad. I just started re-reading On Writing recently, and was pleased to pick up on things I missed first time around, like his distaste for plotting ahead. I purchased the emotion thesaurus only recently, but have used it a lot already.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I read ‘On Writing’ while doing my degree and found it very useful. I have a recommendation for any budding poets out there – Stephen Fry’s ‘An Ode Less Travelled’ is a great introduction to writing poetry, very easy to read too. I’m just about to order ‘The Emotion Thesaurus’ from Amazon as I’ve had it on my wish list for a few years but didn’t know if it was any good or not. Thank you for the recommendation.

    Liked by 1 person

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