Writing.com by Moira Anderson Allen

On your first glance at the title of this book, you may be thinking "Another book about how writing is growing on the Internet. Big Whoop!". That isn't giving this book a fair shake.

While the title may make you think this, it isn't quite true. Unlike many similar publications, this one isn't a beginner's book. Ms. Allen writes for people who already know the Internet. The book pre-supposes that you have net access; that you already know how to compose and send email; that you already know how to find webspace and create a site.

Instead, this book is meant to help you use the Internet more effectively. In Writing.com, Moira Allen shows writers how best to use the Internet to: find new writing markets; communicate with editors and publishers on the net properly; use a website to promote your books and yourself online; work with electronic publication - and much more.

One of the best parts of this book is the collection of online resources that Moira Allen shares. Thirty-four pages of links to sites that can help you with different literary genres, finding writing guidelines online, great places to find resources on almost everything related to writing.

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How To Write Horror, Fantasy & Science Fiction edited by J.N. Williamson

This is less a book of writing tips in general - it's a book of columns of tips on writing from some of the best known authors of the different genres.

The cover is a bit off-putting (unfortunately, a copy isn't available for here). A somewhat nebbish looking man at a computer handing a diskette to a Barbarian warrior-woman. The stereotypes shown in this illustration could fill my review completely.

Once you get past the cover though, you get to share some fascinating opinions of successful authors of the craft. Among them:

  • Ray Bradbury shares stories of how this now 80-year old came up with ideas;
  • Ardath Mahar offers advice on creating believable races in fantasy;
  • Dean R. Koontz shares advice on writing effective horror thrillers;
  • Marion Zimmer Bradley shares advice on believable world building.

... and many more. There's a wealth of advice, inspiration, and motivation to be found in this book.

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Last updated: Sunday, January 29, 2000