So here are the books I recommend-- through the magic of Amazon you can click and have them whisked to your doorstep . . . .


Just getting started? One of these books is required reading! 

Bird By Bird is just like you, scared, flawed and feeling her way toward beginnings, story, characters, setting, etc.

Writing Down the Bones takes a more artistic new-agey approach to the same material.

It's kinda like the difference between watching Sex in the City or going to Yoga class.  They both are a relaxing good time. 

John Gardner isn't right about everything, (for instance he thought Grapes of Wrath would never be a "classic") but he'll surely get you thinking in a deeper more academic way about how stories are told.

Creating Fiction is an AWESOME book that is currently out of print, so snag up those used books!!  Published by AWP, each chapter is written by one of the best MFA profs (from JHU,, Iowa etc, ) in the country -- essay versions of their most famous lectures.  It's an MFA in a box. Uh, a binding.  You know what I mean.

There are a lot of books to help you write a book in 30 days.  (hint, hint, NaNoWriMo) -- these are two of my favorites.  First Draft in 30 Days has my favorite list of 25 things to do when you are stuck, lots of good graphs and charts.

Book in a Month is a binder like helper, broken down into 4 weeks with "write right in the book" type charts, daily affirmations, and other helpful tools. 

A movie script is only 1110-120 pages long, triple spaced -- and in that time you have to craft a plot structure that hits at very specific minutes.  It doesn't translate perfectly to writing a novel or memoir but it's important info to have if you feel like your grip on plot structures is tenuous at best.

Save the Cat is an industry standard for screenplay writers, easy to read -- it will take you less than an hour -- the first time.

How to Write a Movie is more of an industry joke (they even made fun of it on The Sopranos!) but if you feel like you need baby steps, definitely start here!