Reviews of Writing Books

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The Writer's Guide to Everday Life in Regency and Victorian England From 1811-1901 by Kristine Hughes

Writer's Digest Books, Feb., 1998.
Hardcover, 248 pages.
ISBN: 0898798124
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The Writer's Guide to Everday Life in Regency and Victorian England
by Kristine Hughes This historical guide is targeted at fiction writers whose stories take place in 19th Century England. Focusing on the living conditions, etiquette and people of 19th Century England, the book acts as a valuable reference for this time period and place. The book provides details on subjects including: lighting, heating, plumbing, cooking, servants, homes, home furnishings, fashion, medicine, law, military, banking, work, arts, shopping, travel and life and death. Each section describes the subject matter at hand and includes pictures, facts, anecdotes and a detailed bibliography that is useful for writers needing more in-depth information on the topic. An excellent historical aide that will surely help a romance or historical writer to quickly find the correct information or reference he or she needs.

Writing the Short Story by Jack M. Bickham

Writer's Digest Books, July 1998.
Trade Paperback, 213 pages.
ISBN: 0898798809
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Writing the Short Story
by Jack M. Bickham This book acts as a writer's workshop by teaching story writing skills in a step by step fashion. Using easy to obtain materials, index cards, colored pencils and a couple notebooks, the writer learns how to use the index cards to set out the beginnings of his or her story and use them to enhance characters, dialogue and setting. Jack Bingham, author of the popular "The Short Story Blueprint" series in Writer's Digest Magazine, expands on his series in this book. By the time the writer has completed the course he or she will know how to select the story they are going to write, choose their characters, select a setting, map out their story, write and revise the story and market their work. Through instruction and examples, the writer will learn skills to improve his or her writing and common pitfalls to avoid.

Writers looking to for a book that will guide them through the entire story writing process will be well served by this book. An excellent tool for helping the writer create a well-crafted short story from beginning to end.

You Can Get Published by Peggy Teeters

Writer's Digest Books, March 1998.
Trade Paperback, 122 pages.
ISBN: 0898798280
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You Can Get Published
by Peggy Teeters You Can Get Published provides practical and inspirational advice to the writer trying to get published. This beginners' aide provides instruction starting with smaller manuscripts such as fillers and personal experience anecdotes, and then moves to longer manuscripts such as nonfiction columns, articles and short stories. The book also provides instruction on writing for the juvenile market as well as a chapter for senior scribes. Peggy Teeters, an author and writing teacher at the University of Virginia, also provides numerous examples from successful articles and stories as well as from her own published work and a reference section for writers entitled "Tools of the Trade."

Peggy Teeters' advice to beginners is excellent. A concise guide to getting published for beginners looking for a starting point.

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