Writers can be modern artisans, creating something unique with our words. But we must have the right tools. On this page, I collect the best guides and inspirations for improving your written craft and taking it to the market. Click any cover below to get your copy of the book. They're worth it.

1. Establish the motives, disciplines, and vision of the trade.

The War of Art. I give a copy of this to every friend who is serious about writing. Pressfield's writing has brute force, which is just what we need to defeat Resistance.

On Writing. Whatever you think of King's fiction, this book is uniquely brilliant. No other work covers the theory and practice of writing so powerfully. It's a must read.

 

2. Master the craft, down to the details.

Thanks to the masters above, you now see the path. These books will guide you as you forge ahead. Elements of Style teaches the rules of the road. Self-Editing steers when your writing veers.

 

3. Find your own style, but make it good.

I bet you're here because you're a writer. Our tools are words, sentences, and books. But we should heed the expertise of more visual arts. To make your words stand out on a page, spend ten minutes on Butterick's Practical Typography. It's free, and it's beautiful. Also, see how to pair your fonts here.

For covers and layouts, a great place to start is 99designs. For my insights on how it works, read my blog post on The Best Book Cover Design for $300 and my interview with designer Kerry Ellis.

 

4. Take your work from the forge to the digital market.

These artisanal publishers will teach you how to:

Publish your book.

Find your readers.

Write and repeat.

 

5. Seek a little inspiration whenever you feel stuck.

Did you know that Madeleine L'Engle vowed to give up writing a couple years before she penned A Wrinkle in Time? Good thing she didn't. If you feel stuck, find encouragement here.

 

6. Connect with other artisans. The best journeys are shared.

Writing may be solitary, but the best work cannot be done in isolation. Just ask C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien, whose literary group the Inklings helped them chisel their tales. If you are looking for other artisans along this path, the blogs below are a good place to start. You'll learn a lot.