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Welcome to the AQ Connect Community Library -- reference articles about the publishing industry for and by its AQ Connect members.
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Best Writing and Editing Books at Your Public Library (It's Free!) 808.3


A quick guide to some of the best writing and editing resources at your public library:

Words that Work - Frank Luntz
p.14 Don't use fancy substitutes, like "magnificent beast" for a horse.
p.88 The last words of a sentence are the most important.
Syntax is word order: "A famous list of authors."

Self Editing for Fiction Writers - Renni Browne
p. 16 - Use descriptions of characters, but never of their personality.
p. 47 - Everyone reads dialogue, but not always descriptions.
p. 52 - Use "said" almost exclusively. Don't write "said Dave." No adverbs for "said."

Revision and Self Editing - James Scott
p. 97 - All dialogue has to have tension, no chit-chat.
p. 112 - Elipses is trailing off, em-dash is interruption.
p. 119 - Always use "said."
Read it all the way through, 4 sittings max, make notes, no revision yet.

Ten Rules of Writing - Elmore Leonard
1. Never open with weather.
5. No exclamation points, 2 or 3 per 100,000 words max.
6. No "suddenly," or "All hell broke loose."

How NOT to Write a Novel: 200 classic mistakes -Howard Mittlemark
p. 33 - No dreams. One dream per novel, and then get rid of it in edit.
p. 110 - Too many unnecessary em-dashes and exclamation points.
p. 177 - "The pencil flew through the air" (correct) vs "She saw the pencil fly through the air."
p. 43 - "Deus Ex Machina" translates to, "Are you fucking kidding me?"
p. 251 - On spelling: We all want to be loved for being ourselves, but that doesn't mean you don't have to take a shower.


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