Some Of My Favorite Books About Writing

Style: Lessons in Clarity and Grace. Joseph M. Williams. Longman.
I love this book! If you can get only one book on writing clear, elegant sentences, this is it. The 11th edition came out in January 2016, so I’m not the only one who raves about this book. It has simple explanations and great examples.
Send: The Essential Guide to Email for Office and Home. David Shipley and Will Schwalbe, Knopf, 2007. This book is as fun to read as it is useful.
Perfect Phrases for Resumes. Michael Betrus. McGraw Hill. This small book can save you hours of agony trying to come up with the right way to position your job experience.
Resumes for Dummies. Make sure you know how to write and submit a resume using today’s technology. This book walks you through every step of the process and provides examples of winning resumes.
Present Like a Pro: The Field Guide to Mastering the Art of Business, Professional, and Public Speaking. Cyndi Maxey and Kevin E. O’Connor. St. Martin’s Griffin, 2006. Packed full of great tips on every aspect of public speaking.
Unstuck: A Supportive and Practical Guide to Working Through Writer’s Block.. Jane Anne Staw, Ph.D. St. Martin’s Press.

If you’re really feeling blue about writer’s block, I guarantee relief after reading this book. I use her strategies all the time.

Line by Line: How to Edit Your Own Writing.. Claire Kehrwald Cook. Houghton Mifflin Company.

Indispensable. A bit tedious to get through, but no other book I know explains so clearly how to fix the wily sentence errors that creep into everyone’s prose-even the professionals.

Elements of Style, William Strunk and E.B. White. Macmillan.

A classic. Brief and beautifully written. Any edition. The book is also online.

On Writing Well: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction. William Zinnser. HarperCollins.

One of the best. I can open this book to any page and get inspired. Down-to-earth, practical advice for just about any kind of writing, including science, business, memoir, and sports. Zinsser died at 92 in 2015, still writing.

On Writer’s Block: A New Approach to Creativity. Victoria Nelson. Houghton Mifflin.

A slew of great ideas to help break through your writer’s block. If none of them work, call The Writing Coach!

Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life. Anne Lamott. Knopf.

A humorous, honest account of the writing life. Lamott’s unpretentious, slice of life approach to her life teaches and entertains.

Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within. Natalie Goldberg. Shambhala.

A best seller, a fast read, and chock full of wonderful strategies whether you’re just thinking about writing or have been writing forever and need some inspiration.

Simon and Schuster Handbook for Writers, 10th ed. Lynn Quitman Troyka.

The grammar bible for many colleges and university writing programs. It’s really big and within lies everything you might ever need to know about grammar, punctuation, and research writing.

A Pocket Style Manual, 7th edition. Diana Hacker and Nancy Sommers. Bedford/St. Martin’s 2015.

An ultra light, handy grammar reference you can toss in your briefcase or backpack (if you’ve been trying to lug around the Handbook for Writers you’ll appreciate this even more).

The Business Writer’s Handbook, 11th edition. Charles T. Brusaw, Gerald J. Alred & Walter E. Oliu. St. Martin’s Press. 2015.

A compact, thorough handbook for every kind of business writing. It’s designed as a reference for professionals rather than as a textbook, so it’s wonderfully concise and practical.


Open for Success

Note to all you business owners: Being good at what you do and having great marketing materials aren’t enough for success! Working with a coach who truly understands what it takes can make all the difference. And Yota Schneider is the best.

Many universities have OWL’s (online writing labs). Purdue’s is one of the best.
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