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Monday, January 14, 2013

The Book Shelves of a Romance Writer

by  JoAnne Kenrick, author of the bestselling, 'panty bunching' Irish Kisses series.

Not only am I an obsessed ebook purchaser and reader, I also have quite the collection of 'how to' books on writing. Most have been terrible purchases, read once then given away or thrown away. But along my journey as an author, I've managed to gather quite the collection of super helpful books I refer back to again and again. Hopefully, by sharing my list, I'll have saved a few bad purchases and a couple of trees, eh? Happy reading!

Here's my can't-live-without how-to books on writing.... 

Feel free to add links to your own favorites in the comments section!


  • Elements of Style, Strunk & White -- every author's must have. The little grammar book. Various formats available in both print and digital. Check your favorite book store for your preferred choice.

  • Oxford English Dictionary - goes without saying ;)
I also have desktop links that go directly to the Merriam-Webster dictionary and a thesaurus. 

  • Self-Editing for Fiction Writers
by Dave King & Renni Browne
Paperback (9.00) & Kindle (9.00) - http://www.amazon.com/Self-Editing-Fiction-Writers-Second-Edition/dp/0060545690
I'm patiently waiting for Angela James' (of Carina Press and the very popular #editreport monthly updates) Self-Editing workshop, Before You Hit Send, to be released in book format for the masses. Meanwhile, I've been recommended this book from several author friends as a means to see my own work with a more critical eye during edits.

  • Rivet Your Readers With Deep POV
by Jill Elizabeth Nelson
Paperback (5.99) & Kindle (2.99) - http://www.amazon.com/Rivet-Your-Readers-Deep-Point/dp/1470063859
The mini book of how to write stronger sentences while staying in deep character point of view. I can't tell you how helpful I found this little treasure. It spelled out deep POV in a super easy to understand manner, and explained how to achieve optimum reaction using a simple to grasp formula.

  • Writing Erotic Romance, The Complete Idiot's Guide
By Alison Kent
Paperback (12.71) & Kindle (13.99) http://www.amazon.com/Complete-Idiots-Writing-Erotic-Romance/dp/1592575463A quick flick through kind of book... tips and tricks galore in a super organized format for easy reference and searching.

  • How to Write Hot Sex
Edited by Shoshanna Evers.
Tips from multi-published erotic romance authors
Paperback (9.99) & Kindle (4.99) - http://www.amazon.com/How-Write-Hot-Sex-Multi-Published/dp/1466353961
Several essays in a very casual format, each one from a different writer all with solid backgrounds as authors. From how to control those commas, bringing on the sexy without doing the deed, right down to the nitty gritty of getting published. Very interesting read and a must for all romance and erotica authors. Well, basically anyone writing love scenes in their stories.

  • The Romance Writer's Phrase Book
by Jean Kent & Candace Shelton
Paperback (10.29) - http://www.amazon.com/Romance-Writers-Phrase-Book-Perigee/dp/0399510028
Use it like a dictionary of inspiration. A collection of phrases meant to jump start your imagination. This baby is always on my desk and is my best friend while going through periods of 'block'.

  • The Emotion Thesaurus
A Writer's Guide to
Character Expression
by Angela Ackerman & Becca Puglisi
Paperback (9.77) & Kindle (4.99) - http://www.amazon.com/The-Emotion-Thesaurus-Expression-ebook/dp/B00822WM2M
Again, another book that rarely leaves my office desk. Quick reference book meant to jump start ideas and the such like -- dialogue tags, descriptions, emotional reactions...this book has it all!

  • Be A Sex Writing Strumpet
By Stacia Kane
Paperback (4.99) & Kinde (2.99) - http://www.amazon.com/Be-A-Sex-Writing-Strumpet-ebook/dp/B003WJRJ00
A collection of blog posts penned by Stacia Kane; witty and fun, this author shares all she does to get down her sexy scenes... giving examples of what not to do and why not to do it along the way.  I often refer back to this when seeking inspiration before sitting down to write up some smexy times for my latest work in progress. She writes in such an inspiring way, and I always feel I can do it after a quick fix of a paragraph or two from this book.

 
(note: all prices are listed at time of writing this blog post, and are in USA dollar currency. Prices are subject to change)

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