The art of writing skilfully TL;DR – No, I wouldn’t claim to have mastered it, but these books were of great help.

In the past four years, and to the detriment of my spare time, I’ve written three epic fantasy books. The first is to be published in the foreseeable future, likely the first quarter of 2024. The second volume is finished, too, and self-edited, and has seen one or two beta readers. The third is largely written, but could use with some fine-tuning, and one or two additional chapters.

Of the three, the first has since seen the most external scrutiny – at least 15 beta readers, among others – but it wasn’t all that long ago when I hadn’t yet paid any particular attention to grammar, sentence construction, word use, and other things related. I winged it, depending on whatever I had picked up on in the years prior. I hadn’t yet heard of purple prose, or Chekhov’s gun, filler words, filter words, story structure, adverbs and adjectives.

In short; I declined to put any effort into actually learning how to write. There’s a reason for this, which I explained in a previous blogpost, but suffice it to say that when I was finished, my perfectionism proclaimed its self-inflicted banishment was at an end.

There are a great number of books to be found on the art of writing, and I settled on these. Was all of it useful? Most was, actually, if only to seek confirmation on choices made. Are there books in that pile I wish I hadn’t bought? Perhaps ‘the Emotional Wound Thesaurus’, for I’ve hardly used it, but if it’s anything like ‘the Emotion Thesaurus’, it might very well prove to be indispensable if I ever start writing about emotional trauma.

If you feel your writing is missing an ingredient, I would urge you to take a look at this small stack of books.

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