HOME.EBOOK SERVICES.EDITING SERVICES.TYPESETTING/DESIGN.Trailers.BANNERS.FAQs.

Jimandzetta.com is a registered business in Tarrant County, Texas. Website & content © 2009-2014. All rights reserved

Jimandzetta.com is a registered business in Tarrant County, Texas. Website & content © 2009-2014. All rights reserved
Apart from a good dictionary and thesaurus, I like to use and recommend the following references.

Ÿ
Gregg Reference Manual
This provides plenty of practical examples without the jargon. It also gives you the “rules” of grammar and punctuation...plus their many exceptions.
Ÿ
Chicago Manual of Style
A trusted favourite by many, it can be a bit technical, but still a good reference to have.
Ÿ
Oxford Style Manual
Useful for British manuscripts or manuscripts which use, in part or whole, the UK language.
Ÿ
A Handbook to Literature (Harmon & Holman)
This is basically part dictionary/part encyclopedia of literary terms and styles.
I also like to recommend the following resources:

The “Write Great Fiction” Series – Writer’s Digest Books
There’s a reason so many authors recommend and use these books, and that’s because they are excellent.

Guide to Fiction Writing – Phyllis A. Whitney
“...when a writer’s work is in competition with all those thousands of other manuscripts that pour over an editor’s desk, he cannot afford to be ‘as good as’; he (or she) must be ‘better than.’”
Considering Whitney’s illustrious and prolific writing career, she knew what it took to be “better than.”

Plotting and Writing Suspense Fiction – Patricia Highsmith
Highsmith is honest about the difficulties she faced when writing her stories and offers practical advice in this short book.

How to Write a Mystery – Larry Beinhart
Perhaps one of the most entertaining and detailed “how-to” about the genre I have read.

Getting Into Character:  Seven Secrets a Novelist Can Learn from Actors – Brandilyn Collins
People may pooh-pooh method acting, but there is a lot an author can learn from actors when it comes to characterization and motivation—something every character needs in order to interest the reader from start to finish.

The Story Engine: A Writer’s Guide (ebook) – Matt Shutt
If you are ever at a loss on how to make your characters more unique or you’ve written yourself into a corner, this is a fun way to fix it. You can pick and choose traits and situations from the many lists inside, or do it totally by random—with dice!