Linda Funnell has had a long and illustrious career in publishing and Universal Heart Book Club co-host Walter Mason was keen to ask her what books she would recommend to inspire and help authors who'd like to get more serious about their craft. These are the books she suggests.
Strunk & White The Elements of Style - Concise and indispensable. Every writer needs this.
Noah Lukeman The First Five Pages: a writer’s guide to staying out of the rejection pile - Written by a literary agent, this is particularly good on highlighting common mistakes.
Writing memoirs that have a lot to say about craft:
Stephen King's On Writing - Irrespective of the genre you are writing in, this is an excellent account of the creative process.
Patricia Highsmith Plotting and Writing Suspense Fiction - Particularly good on genre, and on what happens when a book gets rejected.
There are also some terrific essays, such as Jacqui Dent’s on the vexed business of calling yourself ‘a writer' in The Emerging Writer: an insider’s guide to your writing journey which was published by the Emerging Writers’ Festival, held at the NSW Writers' Centre in 2012.
Linda Funnell is Chair of the NSW Writers' Centre and one of the editors of The Newtown Review of Books. She has over 30 years experience in the book publishing industry, including roles as a publisher, editor and literary agent.Reader & writer activists: we would love to hear which books have been most practically helpful - as well as inspiring - for you. We have some excellent articles on this blog, including Joyce Kornblatt's exceptionally thoughtful article Three great writers on writing. You can purchase any of the books mentioned - and any others - via our book store links (above right). And we want to hear from you! Use the comments box below (use "Anonymous" if you don't have a google email address).