Monday, July 3, 2017

Reads for Writers--2017 Summer Reading List

From Kate’s Writing Crate…

          I have lots of books waiting to be read, but I’ve chosen the next twelve I want to complete this summer.

          I started reading Wonder and Other Survival Skills: A Selection of Essays from Orion Magazine on July 1st. I love to wonder, as most writers do, and I think it is a survival skill so the title really appealed to me. Among the contributors, I have read Diane Ackerman and Rick Bass before—in fact, I own most of each of their books—but I have never heard of Michael P. Branch whose essay “A Ladder to The Pleiades” I chose randomly to read first. It was a delight. I will never look at a night sky without thinking of his three-year-old daughter and the life lessons she taught him.

          I am not sure in which order I will read the rest of these books.

Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil deGrasse Tyson ties into the essay I mentioned above, but I chose it long before that because of the author and subject. I did the same with Bang! The Complete History of the Universe by Brian May (guitarist in Queen) Patrick Moore, and Chris Lintott.

As I mentioned above, I read Diane Ackerman so her book The Human Age: The World Shaped By Us is on the list.

Since I am a writer, I like to read books about writers as well as books that help me improve my writing including: Arthur & Sherlock: Conan Doyle and the Creation of Holmes by Michael Sims; Dialogue: The Art of Verbal Action for the Page, Stage, and Screen by Robert McKee; and the memoir The Dead Ladies Project: Exiles, Expats, and Ex-Countries by Jessa Crispin.

Also on the list is Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body by Roxane Gay. I saw her speak and read some of her work on Book TV on C-SPAN. She is an extraordinary writer.

In the fiction category, I have chosen Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore by Matthew Sullivan; Grief Cottage by Gail Godwin; and A House Among the Trees by Julia Glass. All of them tie into books and/or authors. 
My final choice is Ten Windows: How Great Poems Transform the World by Jane Hirshfield. I also started reading this book. It is so profound and beautifully written that I recommend it to all writers. This book will be a future Masterclass blog post.

I hope you enjoy your summer reading list as much as I’m going to enjoy mine.

My word count for the week of June 25-July 1 was 15,798.

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