Are you a writer or editor? If so, do you read books on writing or editing? Do you find them helpful? Do they inspire you? Do they frustrate you?
I ask this as I am currently starting to read The Craft of Writing Science Fiction that Sells by Ben Bova. I don’t normally read “self help” or “how to be successful” books in other areas, but I find these writing and editing books interesting from a philosophical perspective. They help me understand the mindset of other writers and what inspired them. This book by Ben Bova is more directed toward the how more than the why like other books I have read, including The Artful Edit: On the Practice of Editing Yourself by Susan Bell and Word by Word: An Editor Guides Writers in the Self-Editing Process by Linda K Taylor. They do provide some wonderful pointers and insights to help me be a better writer or editor, but they do not have as lasting impact on me as a person.
Books by writers that delve into why they wrote, providing insights into their creative process and purpose for writing, I find very inspiring. They help me reflect and ponder my own thoughts and emotions as to why I enjoy writing and editing. The three that have really impacted me are Adorning the Dark: Thoughts on Community, Calling, and the Mystery of Making by Andrew Peterson, Asimov On Science Fiction by Isaac Asimov, and Walking on Water: Reflections on Faith and Art by Madeleine L’Engle. Reading these really encouraged me to delve into my writing even further and be more connected emotionally to what I am writing.
How about you? Has there been a book that really inspired you to be a better writer or editor?