Reading List

These are books I have read and recommend. I haven’t been paid to recommend these books. I also won’t suggest something that I didn’t like. This isn’t a haphazard list but one that has developed out of my love for books (especially those on writing). Most of the books under “books to expand your world” are social justice related and were referred to me by my teachers (primarily Dr. Becky Thompson). I’d also like to say that you shouldn’t let a lack of money prevent you from reading widely. Get a library card. Most times, libraries can request materials from other branches within the same network.

Basic Books on Writing

A Writer’s Book of Days – Judy Reeves

Bird by Bird – Anne Lamott

How to Become a Famous Writer Before You’re Dead – Ariel Gore

Making a Literary Life – Carolyn See

On Writing – Stephen King

Wild Mind: Living the Writer’s Life – Natalie Goldberg

Writing as a Way of Healing – Louise DeSalvo

Writing Down the Bones – Natalie Goldberg

The Writing Life: Writers on How They Think and Work – Marie Arana

Books to Expand Your World

American Protest Literature – Zoe Trodd

Bastard out of Carolina – Dorothy Allison

Black Elk Speaks – John G. Neihardt

The Bluest Eye – Toni Morrison

Breath, Eyes, Memory – Edwidge Danticat

Conquest: Sexual Violence and American Indian Genocide – Andrea Smith

Drops of This Story – Suheir Hammad

How We Sleep on the Nights We Don’t Make Love – E. Ethelbert Miller

Jubilee – Margaret Walker

The Life of Poetry – Muriel Rukeyser

The Miracle of Mindfulness – Thich Nhat Hanh

When the Emperor Was Divine – Julie Otsuka

Wounds of Passion – bell hooks

Zapata’s Disciple: Essays – Martin Espada

Writing Creative Nonfiction

Tell It Slant – Brenda Miller

The Truth of the Matter – Dinty Moore

Writing Erotica

How to Write a Dirty Story – Susie Bright

Writing Erotica – Edo Van Belkom

Writing Fiction

Writing Fiction – Gotham Writers’ Workshop

Writing Poetry

The Ode Less Travelled – Stephen Fry


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