I pile up my books by the bed on the floor. Half of them I’ve finished and haven’t reshelved.
The Last Werewolf by Glen Duncan (Knopf, 2011): Not only did I read it, I finished the sequel. The first book is narrated by an extremely erudite, loquacious 400-year-old werewolf. The text is dense, but savory. Not your average horror novel.
I’ve read Bare Bones: Conversations On Terror With Stephen King (McGraw-Hill, 1988) a few times. Great early interviews with King. I love reading author interviews.
Grace Metalious’s Peyton Place (Julian Messner, 1956) was on the Times bestseller list for 59 weeks in the fifties. It was considered “trashy” at the time for its racy content, but it holds up surprisingly well as a literary novel. Exceptionally well written, in contrast to today’s “trashy” novels.
Save the Cat! Goes to the Movies is one of Blake Snyder’s three screenwriting books (Michael Wiese Productions, 2007). While I’m not a screenwriter, I’ve found the books indispensable for working out problems when writing novels. Every writer should read Blake Snyder.
And Mayflower by Nathaniel Philbrick (Penguin, 2007) . . . read it twice. Let me amend that: I’ve read the first half twice. The first half deals with the Mayflower and the initial Plymouth settlement and is strong and captivating. Then the book skips ahead a few generations in the second half and loses steam.
In all, there are probably two dozen books in various piles on the floor. The only books I haven’t read that are by my bed, in fact, are all on my Kindle. I also have a Nook somewhere . . . probably under one of those piles of books.
What’s books about writing do you keep handy?