How Fiction Works

Before I start the fun task of getting down and actually writing in long hand, at my desk, with a good old pen and notebook, when I start a new project (usually a short story), I have a little ritual. But this always includes the task of going through my favourite book on writing How Fiction Works by James Wood. My copy is heavily annotated and I can quickly get my head in the writing frame of mind within a twenty minutes this way.

Yes, there are plenty of good books about writing out there but 90% of them are utter tosh (believe me I’ve read them all). If you’ve not read this one … I would say it’s the bible in terms of wrapping your head around the right way to write.

My other good recommendation is The Art of Fiction by John Gardener – it’s worth a read also.

Good luck with your writing, fellow writer.

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