I've been making my list of resources for you. Many of these are in my book, Write to be Published. This list is by no means exhaustive, though it was exhausting to put together. Nor do I believe you should read all of these, or even a tenth – there’s a danger in reading too many how-to books and blogs instead of simply getting on with the writing. Don’t overload yourself and don’t feel you have to read a certain amount before you start writing. The time you’ll learn most is when you’re actually writing.
Take what works for you. Be magpie-like, selfish, experimental, self-challenging, but do not tie yourself in knots wondering why something doesn’t make sense. If it doesn’t make sense to you, it’s not for you.
There are both books and on-line materials. I haven’t read all the books, but if I haven’t read them I’ve heard about them from people I trust. I have looked at all the blogs and websites and chosen them for what I found there, but on-line resources do change so I make no promises! It will also depend on what you’re looking for.
I make no apologies for those I’ve left out. It simply would have been impossible to include all the good stuff out there. Go find.
* indicates that the resource is US based, but I would not include it here if I didn’t think it was just as useful to all writers.
YR indicates that the resource focuses on the markets for young readers.
PRINTED RESOURCES ABOUT THE PUBLISHING BUSINESS
From Pitch to Publication by Carole Blake
The New Writer - thenewwriter.com – subscription magazine
The Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook
The W&A Yearbook Guide to Getting Published by Harry Bingham
The Writer’s Essential Tackle Box by Lynn Price (US but with UK edition pubbed by Snowbooks) *
Writers’ Forum - www.writers-forum.com/ - subscription magazine
Writers’ Guide to Copyright and Law by Helen Shay
The Writer’s Handbook
Writers’ Market – UK & Ireland
BOOKS ON HOW TO WRITE – NON GENRE-SPECIFIC
(Many of these are by American writers. The writing craft doesn't change as you cross an ocean so everything applies equally. It's the publishing process and markets that may differ.)
The Aesthetic Validity of Marriage by Kierkegaard - highbrow!
The Art and Craft of Writing and Getting Published by Michael Seidman *
The Art of Fiction by John Gardner
The Art of Fiction by David Lodge – more basic than Gardner's one
Becoming a Writer by Dorothea Brande – though published in 1934, this is still relevant because it’s about writing habit and method *
Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life by Anne Lammot *
The Forest for the Trees: An Editor’s Advice to Writers by Betsy Lerner – wide-ranging and thought-provoking *
Booklife by Jeff Vandermeer - guides us through emotional and practical aspects of writing*
How Not To Write a Novel – Howard Mittelmark – basic *
No Plot? No Problem by Chris Baty – all about NaNoWriMo, the National Novel Writing Month but full of useful tips about writing processes *
On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King – much more than a memoir *
Plot and Structure by James Scott Bell – techniques and exercises in plotting *
Poetics by Aristotle - amazing what that guy knew about structure and meaning
Solutions for Writers: Practical Craft Techniques for Fiction & Non-Fiction by Sol Stein *
Your Writing Coach by Jurgen Woolf – very detailed *
Wannabe a Writer by Jane Wenham Jones – as the title suggests, light-hearted but with serious usefulness
Write Away by Elizabeth George *
Writing a Novel by Nigel Watts – starts at the beginning
ON-LINE – NON-GENRE-SPECIFIC
Creative Penn - thecreativepenn.com – Joanna Penn, Australian writer with good advice for writers
Duotrope - duotrope.com/ - source of resources on all genres, incl poetry
The Forest for the Trees - betsylerner.wordpress.com - writer and editor *
How Publishing Really Works - HowPublishingReallyWorks.com – Jane Smith, editor with wide knowledge of industry) [No longer in operation but still worth its weight in gold]
Kidlit - kidlit.com – Mary Kole, children’s authors’ agent, with sensible advice of interest to all * YR
Nathan Bransford - blog.nathanbransford.com – agent and author with much advice *
Pubrants - pubrants.blogspot.com – another agent has a rant, but gently
Reedsy - Useful overview of avoiding scams: https://blog.reedsy.com/scams-and-publishing-companies-to-avoid/
Query Shark - queryshark.blogspot.com – agent analyses and dissects queries *
Rachelle Gardner - cba-ramblings.blogspot.com – another agent with generous advice *
The State of Independents - stateofindependents.co.uk - a blog by independent booksellers
Victoria Mixon - victoriamixon.com/ - editor and writer with no-nonsense advice *
Vulpes Libris - vulpeslibris.wordpress.com – a collaboration of literary readers writing about books
Writer Beware - accrispin.blogspot.com – essential for avoiding scams *
Plotting and Writing Suspense Fiction by Patricia Highsmith
Writing Crime Fiction by HRF Keating
Writing Crime Fiction: Making Crime Pay by Janet Laurence
Writing Mysteries, ed. Sue Grafton.
Crimespot - crimespot.net – a collection of crime fiction blogs
CrimeSpace - crimespace.ning.com
Crimefest - crimefest.com
Mystery Writing is Murder - mysterywritingismurder.blogspot.com
Noir Originals – allanguthrie.co.uk - Allan Guthrie, crime writer and agent, has a useful links
SinC Guppies, Sisters in Crime - sinc-guppies.org
Theakston’s Crime Festival in Harrogate - harrogate-festival.org.uk/crime
Romantic Novelists’ Association - rna-uk.org - very welcoming; has a New Writers’ Scheme.
Loves Me, Loves Me Not – ed. Katie Fforde
A brief internet search will bring up a wealth of sites, groups and forums – take your pick! An especially recommended site is romancedivas.com/
Georgian London - georgianlondon.com/ - writer Lucy Inglis
The Historical Novel Society - historicalnovelsociety.org – has many links and ideas from those who know. Also see its magazine, the Historical Novels Review, which “aims to review every new work of adult historical fiction released in the USA or the UK” as well as a selection of titles for children and teenagers. It also publishes Solander, historicalnovelsociety.org/solander2.htm – with interviews, articles, short fiction and comment
The Virtual Victorian - virtualvictorian.blogspot.com/ - writer Essie Fox
Emma Darwin and Sally Zigmond’s blogs – see above
Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators, SCBWI - scbwi.org and the UK one britishscbwi.jimdo.com
The Scattered Authors Society - scatteredauthors.org - wonderful support network and includes many friendly writers at all stages of their career.
Children’s Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook, published by A&C Black
Writing for Children by Linda Strachan
Write to be Published by Nicola Morgan
How To Write Science Fiction And Fantasy by Orson Scott Card
Forums and blogs for and by fantasy and sci-fi writers abound on the internet. The writers are often supremely teckie and there’s a world of writing out there on a quick search.
Jeffrey A. Carver - writesf.com/ - includes comprehensive free online course for fantasy and sci-fi writers
Katherine Langrish’s Seven Miles of Steel Thistles - steelthistles.blogspot.com/ - for children’s fantasy writing
On-line writing workshop - sff.onlinewritingworkshop.com – for fantasy, sci-fi and horror
FOR SHORT STORY WRITERS
Short Circuit: A Guide to the Art of the Short Story ed. Vanessa Gebbie
How to Write and Sell Short Stories by Della Galton
Creating Short Fiction by Damon Knight - literary market
ON-LINE (see also the writers who blog section, and Duotrope, The New Writer and Writers’ Forum, already mentioned):
Biscuit Publishing - biscuitpublishing.com
The Short Review - theshortreview.blogspot.com
The Short Story, including the BBC National Short Story Award - theshortstory.org.uk
Tindal Street - tindalstreet.co.uk/writers – this publisher has story writing tips
Womagwriter - womagwriter.blogspot.com – invaluable, by a successful women’s magazine writer
FOR NON-FICTION WRITERS
Get Known Before the Book Deal by Christina Katz and christinakatz.com/