My favourite books about writing

I had a conversation with a friend a few days ago and we spoke briefly about books for genre fiction writing. Both of us had a few favourites, and I found interesting to compare notes with him because I got a few interesting suggestions. So here’s my list, in no particular order; some of them are outright classics, other less known but not at all inferior in quality:

  • Steering the Craft, Ursula K. Le Guin [probably the one that influenced me the most. A compact paperback and a pure gem in Le Guin’s amazing writing style].
  • On Writing, Stephen King
  • The Elements of Style, William Strunk & E.B. White
  • The Writer’s Guide to Creating a Science Fiction Universe, George Ochoa and Jeffrey Osier
  • Solutions for Writers, Sol Stein
  • Self-Editing for Fiction Writers, Renni Browne & Dave King
  • Wonderbook, Jeff Vandermeer
  • Keys for Writers, Ann Raimes
  • How to Write Science Fiction and Fantasy, Orson Scott Card
  • Bird by Bird, by Anne Lamotte

If you need more inspiration, you can have a look at this other list, more extensive than mine and that cover other writing than genre fiction, too.

And what about you, fellow writers out there? Which text would you never leave behind? Do let me know!


  1. maddalena@spaceandsorcery

    I remember reading King’s “On Writing” several years ago and found it a very fascinating insight into the mind of the Master of Horror. 🙂

    1. Steph P. Bianchini (Post author)

      Yes, I agree. It’s rightly famous 🙂

  2. sjhigbee

    That’s a fascinating list, Steph:). I don’t know Wonderbook and knowing how Vandermeer writers, this one fascinates me… Thank you for sharing!

    1. Steph P. Bianchini (Post author)

      Thanks, Sarah – Wonderbook has been a relatively recent discover and I was amazed. It’s a fantastic reading!

      1. sjhigbee

        Thank you for sharing:)

  3. Mr and Mrs NW

    I love Bird by Bird. I’m re-reading it at the moment.

    1. Steph P. Bianchini (Post author)

      It’s a magnificent book, I agree. 🙂

  4. ccyager

    Many of these titles are on my list, too. I have yet to read King’s book, but I have it. Or Bird by Bird — I’ll put that one on my library list. I have a tendency to stay away from books on writing when I’m trying to focus on actually writing. One guide that’s been a constant in my writing life for years is the magazine “The Writer.” I read it cover to cover every month. I feel invigorated and inspired from it.

  5. Steph P. Bianchini (Post author)

    Interesting, I don’t have it. Many thanks for the suggestion, I’ll give it a try!


Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: