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The 3 A.M. Epiphany: Uncommon Writing Exercises that Transform Your Fiction. Brian Kiteley, noted author and director of the University of Denver's creative writing program, has crafted and refined over 200 intriguing writing exercises designed to help you think, write, and revise like never before. A wonderful resource for every writer.
In Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life, Anne Lamott tells the story of how the title came to be: "Thirty years ago my older brother, who was ten years old at the time, was trying to get a report on birds written that ... was due the next day. ... he was at the kitchen table close to tears ... immobilized by the hugeness of the task ahead. Then my father sat down beside him, put his arm around my brother's shoulder, and said, 'Bird by bird, buddy. Just take it bird by bird.'" That's how we approach our writing - and the life of an author as well. Tick them off the tasks one by one, bird by bird. I love it. An oldie now, but definitely worth including in your writer's resource shelf.
Eats, Shoots and Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation by Lynne Truss is an entertaining, no holds barred guide to good punctuation. The message of the book? Don't be afraid of being a Grammar Nazi. Punctuation is important and can even save lives. The terrifying-to-grandmothers-everywhere sentence: "Let's eat Grandma.", becomes: "Let's eat, Grandma!", and we all tuck into some ultra delicious food and Grandma is left alive.
Bella Hessell, 2011, illustrator