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  • Candace Coakley

Hone Your Craft, Spark Your Creativity

Yes, writing is difficult. And that's okay. Although the process of writing may be painful and uncomfortable, it's also cathartic. Keep trying. Push yourself. You may (or may not) love the outcome. Either way is fine. The practice is the reward. Enjoy it and release everything else.


Here are some of my favorite go-to writing books about craft and creativity:


Breaking Ground on Your Memoir: Craft, Inspiration and Motivation for Memoir Writers by Brooke Warner


The Memoir Project: A Thoroughly Non-Standardized Text for Writing and Life by Marion Roach Smith


Handling the Truth: On the Writing of Memoir by Beth Kephart


Writing Life Stories: How to Make Memories into Memoirs, Ideas into Essays, and Life into Literature by Bill Roorbach


The Situation and the Story by Vivian Gornick


Writing the Memoir: From Truth to Art by Judith Barrington


The Art of Time in Memoir by Sven Birkerts


Art of Memoir by Mary Karr


Crafting the Personal Essay: A Guide for Writing and Publishing Creative Nonfiction by Dinty W. Moore


On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King


On Writing Well by William Zinsser


Story: Substance, Structure, Style, and the Principles of Screenwriting by Robert McKee


Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within by Natalie Goldberg


The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles by Steven Pressfield


Writing Begins with the Breath: Embodying Your Authentic Voice by Laraine Herring


Your Book Starts Here: Create, Craft, and Sell Your First Novel, Memoir, or Nonfiction Book by Mary Carroll Moore


Blueprint for a Book by Jennie Nash


The Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp


The Artist’s Way: Creativity as a Spiritual Practice by Julia Cameron


Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life by Anne Lamott


The Elements of Style by Strunk and White


Dreyer’s English: An Utterly Correct Guide to Clarity and Style by Benjamin Dryer


Save the Cat Writes a Novel by Jessica Brody



I hope these give you the adrenalin shot you need! I'd love to hear your favorites, too!