Sunday, 25 October 2015

Books Read While Rewriting Soci of Metro

On the right-hand side of this blog is a mostly up-to-date list of the books I'm currently reading. With the last major draft of my novel "Soci of Metro" out of the way (fingers crossed), I thought it'd nice to list all the books I've read since starting that second draft. It's an idea I've pinched from Stephen King's On Writing, where he lists around a hundred of what he considered the best books he'd read in the handful of years leading up to On Writing's publication in 2000.

My list isn't nearly as long. However, I thought it'd be interesting to make note of the ones I felt helped improve my writing style while going through Soci of Metro's rewrite. So, here we go:

Iain Banks - The Steep Approach To Garbadale
Mark Salisbury - Artists on Comics Art

Clive Barker - Books of Blood vol. 4-6 
Stephen King - Pet Sematary
Greg Sestero - The Disaster Artist
Stephen King - Goes to the Movies 
Isaac Asimov - The Naked Sun
Isaac Asimov - The Caves of Steel 
Scarlett Thomas - The End of Mr Y *
John Bonner - Why Size Matters: From Bacteria to Blue Whales
Clive Barker - Abarat
Neil Gaiman - American Gods *
Stephen King - The Dark Tower IV: Wizard and Glass *
Neil Gaiman - Smoke and Mirrors
Katsuhiro Otomo - Domu
Joyce Carol Oates - Solstice
Clive Barker - Books of Blood vol. 1-3 
Stephen King - The Dead Zone *
Neil Gaiman - The Ocean at the End of the Lane 
Stephen King - Cycle of the Werewolf
Clive Barker - Mister B. Gone
Joyce Carol Oates - A Fair Maiden *
Philip Reeve - Mortal Engines 
Joyce C. Oates - The Museum of Dr. Moses
Raymond Chandler - The Big Sleep 
Stephen King - Carrie
Stephen King - The Shining 
The Corn Maiden - Joyce Carol Oates
Stephen King - On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft 
Lance Parkin - Magic Words: The Extraordinary Life of Alan Moore
Stephen Fry - The Liar *
Iain Banks - Walking on Glass
Neil Gaiman - The Graveyard Book
Joyce Carol Oates – Daddy Love
Harry Harrison - The Stainless Steel Rat Goes to Hell
Stephen King - Misery

Books in blue are ones I haven't finished, those with asterisks are ones I found unhelpful to read while rewriting "Soci of Metro", and those in bold are books I found most helpful.

Note that none of these distinctions related to how entertaining I found any of these books. For example, The Liar by Stephen Fry was a wonderful read, but the style seeped into my own work, which didn't work for my novel at all. On the flip side, I didn't get much out of The Shining's story, but Stephen King's writing style in that book is solid.

Anyway, keep on reading, see what you can see, and learn what you can learn.
Yes, I used a stock image as a header. I got it from Pexels. And while I don't need to provide attribution under the CC0 licence, Pexels is a pretty nifty site. Check it out.


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