Best Books For Writers

A list of books whose purpose is to encourage, inspire and help writers. Important Note: Please add only books that have to do with writing that are non-fiction.
1

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4.23 avg rating — 385 ratings
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2

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4.20 avg rating — 62,591 ratings
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3

by
4.32 avg rating — 177,516 ratings
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4

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4.23 avg rating — 64,280 ratings
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5

by
3.90 avg rating — 85,363 ratings
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6

by
3.91 avg rating — 75 ratings
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7

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3.99 avg rating — 4,658 ratings
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8

by
4.18 avg rating — 23,245 ratings
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9

by
4.10 avg rating — 1,293 ratings
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9

by
4.32 avg rating — 177,516 ratings
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11

by
4.31 avg rating — 1,213 ratings
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11

by
4.09 avg rating — 4,570 ratings
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13

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3.95 avg rating — 788 ratings
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14

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4.25 avg rating — 18,395 ratings
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15

by
4.08 avg rating — 1,641 ratings
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16

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4.14 avg rating — 2,843 ratings
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17

by
4.03 avg rating — 11,428 ratings
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18

by
4.23 avg rating — 3,122 ratings
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19

by
4.15 avg rating — 3,016 ratings
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20

by
3.99 avg rating — 18,425 ratings
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21

by
4.04 avg rating — 100,043 ratings
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22

by
4.78 avg rating — 9 ratings
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22

by
4.15 avg rating — 26 ratings
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22

by
4.78 avg rating — 9 ratings
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25

by
4.10 avg rating — 1,129 ratings
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26

by
4.13 avg rating — 2,407 ratings
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26

by
4.57 avg rating — 324 ratings
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28

by
4.07 avg rating — 3,302 ratings
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29

by
4.07 avg rating — 1,349 ratings
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30

by
4.02 avg rating — 51,070 ratings
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31

by
3.70 avg rating — 429 ratings
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31

by
4.11 avg rating — 2,547 ratings
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31

by
3.84 avg rating — 6,119 ratings
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34

by
3.91 avg rating — 2,146 ratings
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34

by
4.01 avg rating — 4,981 ratings
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36

by
4.02 avg rating — 5,327 ratings
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37

by
4.21 avg rating — 5,102 ratings
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38

by
4.12 avg rating — 77 ratings
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39

by
4.07 avg rating — 7,245 ratings
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40

by
4.06 avg rating — 1,382 ratings
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41

by
3.89 avg rating — 139,652 ratings
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42

by
3.82 avg rating — 266 ratings
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43

by
it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 4 ratings
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43

by
3.85 avg rating — 41 ratings
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43

by
4.09 avg rating — 46 ratings
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43

by
it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 5 ratings
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43

by
4.50 avg rating — 4 ratings
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43

by
4.26 avg rating — 141 ratings
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43

by
3.78 avg rating — 9 ratings
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43

by
3.53 avg rating — 62 ratings
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43

by
4.14 avg rating — 139 ratings
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43

by
4.57 avg rating — 7 ratings
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43

by
3.67 avg rating — 15 ratings
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43

by
3.60 avg rating — 5 ratings
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43

by
it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 5 ratings
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43

by
4.34 avg rating — 91 ratings
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43

by
4.83 avg rating — 12 ratings
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43

by
4.10 avg rating — 10 ratings
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43

by
4.75 avg rating — 4 ratings
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43

by
4.07 avg rating — 4,081 ratings
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43

by
really liked it 4.00 avg rating — 5 ratings
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43

by
3.92 avg rating — 38 ratings
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43

by
4.53 avg rating — 96 ratings
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43

by
4.57 avg rating — 82 ratings
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43

by
4.10 avg rating — 860 ratings
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43

by
4.72 avg rating — 18 ratings
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43

by
4.34 avg rating — 76 ratings
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43

by
it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 3 ratings
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43

by
it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 4 ratings
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70

by
it was amazing 5.00 avg rating — 8 ratings
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70

by
3.92 avg rating — 186 ratings
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70

by
4.28 avg rating — 274 ratings
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70

by
4.32 avg rating — 47 ratings
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70

by
4.05 avg rating — 3,965 ratings
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70

by
4.11 avg rating — 106 ratings
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70

by
4.04 avg rating — 27 ratings
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77

by
3.57 avg rating — 28 ratings
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77

by
4.10 avg rating — 3,241 ratings
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77

by
4.48 avg rating — 31 ratings
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77

by
4.10 avg rating — 12,316 ratings
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81

by
4.23 avg rating — 115 ratings
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81

by
3.90 avg rating — 73 ratings
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81

by
4.06 avg rating — 16 ratings
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84

by
3.75 avg rating — 1,652 ratings
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84

by
3.99 avg rating — 384 ratings
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84

by
3.88 avg rating — 1,631 ratings
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87

by
4.11 avg rating — 1,463 ratings
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87

by
3.86 avg rating — 99 ratings
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89

by
4.14 avg rating — 2,200 ratings
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89

by
4.20 avg rating — 260 ratings
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91

by
4.08 avg rating — 12 ratings
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92

by
4.18 avg rating — 136 ratings
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92

by
4.05 avg rating — 467 ratings
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94

by
3.98 avg rating — 4,919 ratings
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95

by
3.60 avg rating — 156 ratings
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95

by
4.03 avg rating — 594 ratings
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97

by
4.07 avg rating — 1,274 ratings
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98

by
3.75 avg rating — 295 ratings
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99

by
3.91 avg rating — 1,097 ratings
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100

by
4.33 avg rating — 6 ratings
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104 books · 91 voters · list created January 7th, 2011 by Eden (votes) .
Tags: best, writing
28 likes · 
Lists are re-scored approximately every 5 minutes.


Eden 1488 books
106 friends
Susanna - Censored by GoodReads 3060 books
785 friends
Kate 224 books
3184 friends
Mes 385 books
30 friends
Mike 91 books
473 friends
Kathleen 401 books
121 friends
Kathy 42 books
54 friends
Barbara 16 books
0 friends

More voters…


Comments Showing 1-14 of 14 (14 new)

dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Sharon (new)

Sharon I see a lot of novels on this list. That doesn't seem to be in keeping with the purpose of the list, which I assumed would be non-fiction books on the writing craft.


message 2: by Alessandra (last edited Jul 15, 2012 10:18AM) (new)

Alessandra The terms of this list are books that "encourage, help, and inspire writers." That doesn't rule out fictional inspiration.

I agree with you that that probably wasn't the original purpose of the list, but the custom here (not sure if it's official terms of service) is that unless the OP comes back and changes or clarifies the terms, generally the list is let alone, or at least treated carefully with much discussion before anything is done.

It's tempting to prune away at lists, which is why people have to be really, really careful when they do. GR doesn't have an "undo" set up for lists at the moment, which makes it even more important to be clear.

Probably the best thing to do is start your own list, being very clear that only nonfiction on the writing craft should be included.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads It's not clear enough to me that the maker of the list meant to exclude fiction for me to remove them. Are you still here, Eden?


message 4: by Sharon (last edited Jul 15, 2012 10:39AM) (new)

Sharon Understood! Maybe I will indeed start my own non-fiction list. I agree that novels can and do help, inspire and encourage writers -- but if I were to add all the novels that have done that for me, there would be no room for great writing books like my own favourite, Becoming a Writer -- a wonderful gem which is at the very bottom of the list!

But thanks for clarifying.


message 5: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Oh! The book is now in place 8! That's a quick leap up. It was at the bottom this morning.


message 6: by Alessandra (new)

Alessandra That may be the time lag for lists to refresh. It takes something like five minutes for new votes to get sorted out. Sometimes when I've added new books they first show up right at the bottom, saying "score:0 and 1 person voted." After five or ten minutes they're where they belong.

I note that book says "score:100 and 1 person voted," so I deduce it's first on your list.


message 7: by Sharon (new)

Sharon It's the ONLY one on my list! It helped me so much that all other writing books are really only "also rans"!


message 8: by Eden (new)

Eden Susanna wrote: "It's not clear enough to me that the maker of the list meant to exclude fiction for me to remove them. Are you still here, Eden?"

I'm still here. Sorry, I haven't checked the list in quite a while. The list was meant for only non-fiction books. I did change that in the description now and I see at least one book on the list right now that is fiction and isn't really meant to help writers.
You can remove the fiction books if you like. I'm not sure how to do it, as I haven't done it before.


message 9: by Eden (new)

Eden Susanna wrote: "It's not clear enough to me that the maker of the list meant to exclude fiction for me to remove them. Are you still here, Eden?"

I figured out how to remove books and removed some of the ones I definitely knew were fiction.


message 10: by Alessandra (new)

Alessandra Congratulations. Scary, isn't it, the way they give you that dire warning for every single book.

I see a lot of fiction still on here, but at least we know it's okay to pare it aeay. (I'm on my phone now, whose buttons are not trustworthy enough for such a serious job.)

What about collections of poems? There are a lot here.

I also see Elie Wiesel's Holocaust memoria, "Night," which I suspect is outside the definitions of this list.

It's a collection of marvelous books ... but not nonfiction about writing.


message 11: by Eden (new)

Eden Alessandra wrote: "Congratulations. Scary, isn't it, the way they give you that dire warning for every single book.

I see a lot of fiction still on here, but at least we know it's okay to pare it aeay. (I'm on my..."


I'm going to remove all the books that are fiction. If I miss any, feel free to remove them.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads Removed, for being fiction:

The Mouse and His Child, by Russell Hoban
A Doll's House, by Henrik Ibsen
One Hundred Years of Solitude, by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Tender is the Night, by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Sonnets from the Portuguese, by Elizabeth Barrett Browning
Little Birds, by Anais Nin
The Road Not Taken and Other Poems, by Robert Frost
Love is a Dog from Hell, by Charles Bukowsky
A Spy in the House of Love, by Anais Nin
The Poisonwood Bible, by Barbara Kingsolver
The Collected Stories, by Colette
Chesapeake, by James A. Michener
Johnny Got His Gun, by Dalton Trumbo
Lady Chatterley's Lover, by D.H. Lawrence
The Razor's Edge, by Somerset Maugham
The House of the Spirits, by Isabelle Allende
Flowers for Algernon, by Daniel Keyes


message 13: by Eden (new)

Eden Susanna wrote: "Removed, for being fiction:

The Mouse and His Child, by Russell Hoban
A Doll's House, by Henrik Ibsen
One Hundred Years of Solitude, by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Tender is the Night, by F. Scott Fitz..."


Thanks for helping remove the fiction books. I appreciate it.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads No problem.

There's some non-fiction on here I suspect isn't really on the subject: the M.F.K. Fisher, for example.


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