Guest post from Lily Byrne

Okay then, today I have a guest post from Lily Byrne, who is an editor at Taylor Street Books. She is expounding her wisdom on books to help the writer…so if, like me, you get a bit grumpy when writing…this might help. Take it away Lily…

Recommended books on the writing craft

I never used to read ‘how to’ books on writing, I just got on with it. but various friends have recommended some and I’ve found them so useful I want to pass their advice on.

The first book I bought was recommended by Sudam Panigrahi. Called ‘Make a Scene: Crafting a Powerful Story One Scene at a Time’ by Jordan Rosenfeld, it approaches writing a book by tackling one scene at a time. The author explains the architecture of a scene—beginnings, middles and ends; core elements of a scene; scene types—such as dialogue scenes, action scenes and point of view.

I’d never thought of a book as a collection of scenes before (duh!) and now I think this is a great way to write. The scenes build up to make a story as bricks build up to make a house, each one self contained yet adding to the plot.

Next, after feeling nervous of writing sex scenes, I bought ‘The Joy of Writing Sex’ by Elizabeth Benedict. I can’t remember who recommended this book, but its handily divided into chapters about different types of sex scene, such as ‘the first time’ and ‘forbidden love’. The latter being my favourite type, as that is what I always write about! There is also a chapter about writers’ parents and their view of their children writing sex scenes, which is illuminating! Elizabeth Benedict gives a checklist of important aspects of each type of sex scene, such as the first time being thrilling but also uncomfortable and awkward.

And as I now work an editor for Taylor Street Publishing, I wanted to find a reference book on editing, as reassurance and to help with my own books. After careful research, not wanting to spend a fortune, I decided to buy ‘Self-Editing for Fiction Writers, Second Edition: How to Edit Yourself Into Print’ by Renni Browne and Dave King, both experienced editors. They give a very clear explanation of point of view and show and tell in this book, among other things. They use lots of examples from best selling and new authors and also provide a checklist of what to and what not to do with each element of the writing craft.

Some links to Lily’s books are here – I encourage you to go and check em out!!

About George Fripley
I am a writer who enjoys writing humour, satire, poetry and sometimes a bit of philosophy. I live in Perth, Western Australia and occasionally get a poem or article published. It's all good fun! I have two books available for unwary readers, Grudges, Rumours and Drama Queens- The Civil Servant's Manual (This contains all that anybody could ever want to know about why government runs so slowly) and More Gravy Please! - the Politician's Handbook. (available through Amazon). Real name Peter Tapsell...just started off writing under a pseudonym and kept going.

2 Responses to Guest post from Lily Byrne

  1. Mike Church says:

    Short and sweet! Just like Lily.

    Thanks for the recommendations. “Make a Scene” sounds particularly interesting, and I have to agree that often the easiest way to tell a story is to work one scene at a time.

  2. Lily Byrne says:

    Thanks for posting my blog here 🙂

    Haha, Mike, you summed me up in three words!

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