As a professional author, I’ve always believed that the journey of a writer is one of continual growth and exploration. Over the years, I’ve discovered several books, courses, and even an app that have become close companions in my writing endeavors. These resources have not only refined my skills but have also offered me new perspectives, guiding me through the complex and beautiful process of storytelling. Sharing these gems feels like passing on a part of my own writer’s journey, and I’m excited to dive into each one, hoping they might light the same spark in you that they did in me. Here are six tools that transformed my writing journey.
How to Write a Damn Good Novel by James N. Frey
James N. Frey’s How to Write a Damn Good Novel is a must-read for novelists at any stage of their career. This book stands out as both a guide to dramatic storytelling and a philosophical exploration of fiction writing. Frey’s accessible style and clear presentation of essential storytelling elements, such as creating strong premises, compelling plots, and vibrant characters, make this book invaluable. Its straightforward, no-nonsense approach to storytelling basics is perfect for both beginners and professionals looking for a refresher.
Neil Gaiman Teaches the Art of Storytelling (Masterclass)
Neil Gaiman’s Masterclass on the Art of Storytelling is a journey into the mind of one of the most celebrated contemporary authors. Over nineteen videos and numerous workbook exercises, Gaiman covers the essence of effective storytelling. This class is not about writing a book quickly but delving into the concepts behind great fiction. It’s an enriching experience for anyone interested in exploring the alchemy of storytelling and finding their own voice.
Save the Cat! Writes a Novel
Save the Cat! Writes a Novel by Jessica Brody is a comprehensive guide on novel-writing, transforming Blake Snyder’s method for screenwriters into a format suitable for novelists. This book delves deep into genres and storytelling beats, providing a detailed framework for crafting well-structured narratives. It’s a tool for novelists at any stage, offering solutions for common writing challenges and a checklist for ensuring a compelling hero’s journey.
Write a Great Novel by Russell Nohelty (Online Course)
Though no longer available to new students, as far as I can tell, Write a Great Novel by Russell Nohelty was a transformative course. It covered everything from idea culling to character development, setting, world building, and story structure. The course helped me streamline my writing process, enabling me to complete the first draft of “Bodacious Creed and the Jade Lake” in less than six months. For those interested in Nohelty’s approach, his books on Amazon, such as “How to Build Your Creative Career” and “Get Your Book Selling on Kickstarter,” are excellent resources.
Tome Writing App
The Tome app is an innovative tool that has revolutionized the way I approach novel writing. Available at https://www.tomewriting.com/, it’s a comprehensive program that caters to both seasoned authors and beginners. I discovered its utility when I received it as a Christmas gift, initially to assist in accelerating the writing process for my current project, “Anna, Daughter of Creed.” The app’s ability to guide writers through each step of crafting a novel is remarkable. It’s structured to provide support regardless of where you are in your writing journey, making it a versatile tool for any novelist. In my experience, Tome has been instrumental in refreshing the basics of novel writing, ensuring that foundational elements of storytelling are robust and well-developed. This has been particularly helpful in maintaining the quality and pace of my writing.
For me, these resources have been helpful in refining my writing skills. Each of these books, courses, and tools offers insights and practical advice. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned author, there’s always something new to learn and ways to enhance your storytelling.
“Intellectual growth should commence at birth and cease only at death.”