Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Books about writing

I've been trying to write more regularly of late, without being highly critical of myself. So far, it's been fun and liberating.

However, I'd quite like to learn more about writing, both poetry and prose. Does anyone out there (Ali perhaps?) know of any good books to read about either subject. I think poetry's probably my main concern at the moment - I have no idea about technique and structure etc. I just write. But even if I end up abandoning orthodoxy, I'd like to know what I'm abandoning.

** I should add I started reading "The Poet Who Forgot", and that was really inspiring, but apart from what I learnt by osmosis, it didn't really give me technical advice.
I've also just been trying to read more poetry in general, and that's been good, but once again I'm just learning by osmosis.


Ali said...

Hey Soph,
Sorry I can't comment on blogs at work (where I read them) so I have to revisit later, but you could start with Rules for the Dance by Mary Oliver. Great poetry book! And she talks about how once you know the rules, then you can break them, but you should know them first.
The Little Red Writing Book by Mark Tredinnick is good.
Hope that's a start.

onlinesoph said...

I have Negotiating with the Dead by Margaret Atwood. I haven't read it yet, even though I've had it for three years! MA is my all time favourite author. I will let you know how I find it, once I get around to reading it...

sophg said...

Thanks for the tips.

I'd been looking into Mary Oliver's other book - A Poetry Handbook. And I'd considered Tredinnick's book too.

I ended up getting "Writing Poetry" by Matthew Sweeney and John Hartley Williams - it's in its third edition and had some good write-ups.

Soph - Margaret Atwood is one of my favourite authors too! I stole a collection of her short stories from my school library in Year 11. Stole.