I have always wanted to read more about the craft of writing as my ambition during my college days was to become a writer. Earlier, the idea was to tell everyone of my dream books and plans about writing a novel. The novel never materialised nor do I hope to live by writing alone but I have managed to write in my blogs whatever I have wanted to write. One serious consequence of this hobby is that since 2006, I have managed to accumulate a pile of books on the art of writing.
Many of these sit gathering dust on the bookshelves and I can’t find all of them but here are a list of books that have definitely had an impact on me. Rather than becoming a writer per se, I have become a bibliophile of books on writing. Here are a few of the books in my collection:
- Zen and the Art of Writing by Ray Bradbury: From the author of The Martian Chronicles comes this beautiful book on writing published in 1990, where he highlights the importance of writing with Zest and Gusto. He is of the opinion that the greatest reward that a writer can have is a positive remark from an admiring reader. He advises that a writer has to practise frequently and work hard to learn the rules of the language yet find new ways of using them.
- Delighting the Heart: A Notebook by Women Writers edited by Susan Sellers is a book on writing by women writers who share their experiences- starting from the process of inspiration to publication. Susan Sellers shares in the Preface how she was inspired by a visit to Jane Austen’s writing space, which was a table tucked behind the main door to the family room. It is strange to note that she deliberately left the hinges of the door unoiled so that she could stop writing whenever someone came in and she could resume her role as the mistress of the house.
- Chicken Soup for the Writer’s Soul: Stories to Open the Heart and Rekindle the Spirit of Writers is a book that I really love except that I do nothing but read my favourite stories again and again without even thinking of writing one single word. The book has inspirational stories about writers who have managed to get published despite of getting rejected countless times.
- Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke are a collection of letters that the poet Rilke sent to a young soldier named Franz Kappus who wanted to be a poet. This book is a beautiful read as it offers much for a beginning writer. Read More!