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This is an ongoing list of books and articles about writing, reading, freelancing, and using social media. I write mostly nonfiction (travel, food, culture), so many of these links are related to that type of writing.

Books

  • Bird by Bird. This is the classic book on writing and life from Anne Lamott. Overwhelmed by a project? Jealous of others’ success? Wondering what to write about? This is a worthwhile read.
  • On Writing Well. An indispensable guide for nonfiction writers for more than 30 years, this book by William Zinsser includes chapters on writing about travel, science, memoir, and more.
  • Lonely Planet’s Guide to Travel Writing. Don George’s book is my bible. I keep in near my desk and always learn something new from it. There are fantastic interviews with some of the best travel writers in the business and solid examples of travel prose.
  • Will Write For Food: The Complete Guide to Writing Cookbooks, Blogs, Reviews, Memoir, and More. You’ll want this guide from Dianne Jacob if you’re serious about cooking, eating, and writing about it.

Articles and Websites About Writing

One great place to start reading about the craft of writing is in the New York Times’s Draft. If you’re feeling in a rut and in need of motivation, The Days of Yore blog provides interviews of artists before they had money or fame.

Freelancing

Social Media, Curation, and Building Websites and Communities

Finally, I have a few favorite articles that lie outside the categories above.

  • The Joy of Quiet. In this piece, Pico Iyer doesn’t give writing advice. Rather, he explains the importance of slowing down to listen to the voices in your head and the quiet around you. [NYT]
  • How to Really Listen by Peter Bregman is along the same lines as the Pico Iyer piece above. Worth a read. [HBR Blog]
  • Why We Travel. This is the ultimate Pico Iyer article on travel and travel writing. I love reading this piece for motivation every few months. [World Hum]

 

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