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Now Write! contributors are extremely prolific. Here is a small sample of books that came out in the last two years.
God: A Human History by Rezla Aslan (Now Write! Nonfiction contributor)
Random House (November, 2017 – hardcover)
The bestselling author of Zealot and host of Believer explores humanity’s quest to make sense of the divine in this concise and fascinating history of our understanding of God. In Zealot, Reza Aslan replaced the staid, well-worn portrayal of Jesus of Nazareth with a startling new image of the man in all his contradictions. In his new book, Aslan takes on a subject even more immense: God, writ large.
Music Is Power by Brad Schreiber (Now Write! Screenwriting and Now Write! Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror contributor)
Rutgers University Press (November, 2019 – hardcover)
A guided tour through the past 100 years of politically-conscious music, from Pete Seeger and Woody Guthrie to Green Day and NWA. Covering a wide variety of genres, musicians take a variety of approaches to fight for a fairer world. Shines a spotlight on seminal, politicized artists, and offers a new appreciation for classic acts such as Lesley Gore, James Brown, and Black Sabbath, who overcame limitations in their industry to create politically potent music.
Strangers and Cousins by Leah Hager Cohen (Now Write! Nonfiction contributor)
Riverhead Books (May, 2019)
A novel about what happens when an already sprawling family hosts an even larger and more chaotic wedding: an entertaining story about family, culture, memory, and community.
One of The Washington Post’s ten best books of the year.
A look at one family led by a charismatic, defense attorney father – a lovable, impossible man of gargantuan appetites and sloppy ethics, a criminal defense attorney who loved his drug-dealing clients a little too much and went to prison as a result.
Blood Prism by E.E. King (Now Write! Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror contributor)
Flying Feline Productions (January, 2018)
Penny Dreadful meets American Gods. Like Neil Gaiman’s American Gods, Blood Prism is a blend of history, fantasy, and Americana. A cast of real and mythological traverse the Catskill Mountains, the River Styx and into an alternate San Francisco during the start of the AIDs crisis, where love might just be stronger than destiny…or maybe not.
William Morrow (hardcover and Kindle, August, 2019; paperback August, 2020)
Called “a modern-day Nancy Drew for grownups” by actress Jamie Lee Curtis.
Emily Harlow is a professional organizer who helps people de-clutter their lives and she’s married to man who can’t drive past a yard sale without stopping. She distracts herself from marital problems with new clients who have a mess that might be too big for her to clean up. “Careful what you wish for,” as the old adage says . . . Emily might lose her freedom, her marriage, and possibly her life.
**Find Hallie Ephron’s book Writing & Selling Your Mystery Novel in the Now Write! Contributors updated writing books post.**
Rabid Heart by Jeremy Wagner (Now Write! Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror contributor)
Riverdale Avenue Books (August, 2018)
Can true love survive the Necro Rabies pandemic that has turned the world into hordes of rabid undead zombies known as “Cujos”?
Now Write! anthologies belong on every writers’ bookshelf – the perfect gift for the writer in your life. Now Write! contributors have a number of their own writing books that can make the ideal companion gift to encourage your favorite writer.
(Note: Now Write! editor Laurie Lamson was the host of International Screenwriters’ Association’s free teleconferences for four years. Many Now Write! contributors were guest speakers – podcast links provided below when available.)
Film Genre for the Screenwriter by Jule Selbo PhD (Now Write! Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror contributor)
Routledge (Aug, 2014)
A practical study of how classic film genre components can be used in the construction of a screenplay. Based on Jule Selbo’s popular course, this accessible guide includes an examination of the historical origins of specific film genres, how and why these genres are received and appreciated by film-going audiences, and how the student and professional screenwriter alike can use the knowledge of film genre components in the ideation and execution of a screenplay.
Explaining the defining elements, characteristics and tropes of genres from romantic comedy to slasher horror, and using examples from classic films, Selbo offers a compelling and readable analysis of film genre in its written form. The book also offers case studies, talking points and exercises to make its content approachable and applicable to readers and writers across the creative field.
My First Novel edited by Alan Watt (Now Write! Screenwriting contributor)
contributors incl: Cheryl Strayed, Rick Moody, Aimee Bender (Now Write! Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror contributor), Janet Fitch, Jerry Stahl, David Ulin, Merrill Markoe, Dan Fante, Sheri Holman and many more
Writer’s Tribe Quest (Aug. 2013)
Have you ever wondered how your favorite authors got their start? How did they make the leap from closet scribe to published author? In My First Novel: Tales of Woe and Glory, twenty-five authors recount the variety of hurdles, both internal and external that they had to overcome on their journey.
Designed for both beginning and established writers, this is a complete writing workshop in just one book. From first draft jitters to completing a polished manuscript for publication, the material is presented in a fun and informative progression filled with ideas for brainstorming plus checklists and writing exercises. Chapters include full coverage of characterization, plot, setting, dialogue, and marketing and query letter techniques. Besides end-of-chapter writing assignments, the book concludes with a strong question and answer section.
You Can’t Make This Stuff Up: The Complete Guide to Writing Creative Nonfiction—from Memoir to Literary Journalism and Everything in Between by Lee Gutkind (Now Write! Nonfiction contributor)
Da Capo Lifelong Books (August, 2012)
Offering new ways of understanding the genre, this how-to guide from the “Godfather behind creative nonfiction” (Vanity Fair) helps writers of all skill levels thoroughly expand and stylize their work.
What is creative nonfiction? It’s simple: true stories, well told. And yet—it’s not so simple. Telling true stories can be hard work, but worthwhile. It’s the hottest genre in the publishing industry.
Frank, to-the-point, and always entertaining, Gutkind describes and illustrates each and every aspect of the genre with depth and clarity. Invaluable tools and exercises illuminate key steps from defining a concept and establishing a writing process to the final product.
The Mindful Writer: Noble Truths of the Writing Life by Dinty Moore (Now Write! Nonfiction contributor)
Wisdom Publications (April, 2012 – hardcover)
Explores how a lifelong pursuit of writing and creativity helped open me to the path of Buddhism. The book explores these ideas through sixty writing quotes, from Buddhist writers such as Pema Chodron and from others, including Flannery O’Connor and August Wilson. Each of the quotes is discussed in a short page or so, revealing the similarities between artistic awareness and mindful thought.
Riding the Alligator: Strategies for a Career in Screenplay Writing (and not getting eaten) by Pen Densham (Now Write! Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror contributor)
Michael Wiese Productions (2011)
An artist-friendly screenwriting guide to success, with a non-dogmatic approach to finding your own personal creative process.
Pen draws from his own extremely simple breakthrough techniques, shares his inspiring philosophy of finding a personal well of creativity from your inner voice, to overcoming the many challenges in a unique business, managing stress, the real secrets to selling your work, finding the right agent and being true to one’s nature to create a lasting and passion-filled career.
Dating Your Character: A Sexy Guide to TV and Screenwriting by Marilyn R. Atlas (Now Write! Screenwriting contributor), Deborah Cutler-Rubenstein(Now Write! Screenwriting and Now Write! Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror contributor), Elizabeth Lopez
Stairway press (August, 2016)
Most books approach character development using a winnowing process involving general categorization and list-making. Dating Your Character focuses instead on the importance of the individuality of characters: their eccentricity, drive, and relative “basis in fact” inspired in part by people you know or you yourself.
The 90-Day Novel: Unlock the Story Within, 2nd edition by Alan Watt (Now Write! Screenwriting contributor)
The 90-Day Novel Press, 2010
Get the first draft down quickly! The 90-Day Novel is a day-by-day guide through the process of getting the first draft of your novel onto the page. The 90-Day Novel was workshopped at LA Writers’ Lab over three years and has helped hundreds of writers complete their work. Some of Watt’s students have gone on to become bestselling authors and win major literary awards.
Writing & Selling Your Mystery Novel by Hallie Ephron (Now Write! Mysteries contributor)
Writer’s Digest Books, 2nd edition (January, 2017)
New York Times best-selling author shares the secrets to crafting an unforgettable mystery. The essentials of craft and the plan to execute them. This completely revised and updated edition features solid strategies for drafting, revising, and selling an intriguing novel that grips your readers and refuses to let them go.
Expanded 2nd Edition (Aug. 2014)
Breaks down the art of pitching in Hollywood step by step. From choosing the right idea, to selling it in the room, this book tells you how it’s done, in clear language, suitable for the beginner or the seasoned Hollywood professional.
With decades of combined experience working in Hollywood as buyer, seller and teacher, the authors, Douglas Eboch and Ken Aguado, have created the definitive book that will demystify the pitching process, supported by a reasoned, logical point of view and supported by numerous specific examples.
If you want to work in the Hollywood creative community, you must know how to pitch. This book will show you how to succeed.
The Hidden Tools of Comedy by Steve Kaplan (Now Write! Screenwriting contributor)
Michael Wiese Productions (July, 2013)
Unlock the unique secrets and techniques of writing comedy. Kaplan deconstructs sequences in popular films and TV that work and don’t work, and explains what tools were used (or should have been used). While other books give you tips on how to “write funny,” this book offers a paradigm shift in understanding the mechanics and art of comedy, and the proven, practical tools that help writers translate that understanding into successful, commercial scripts.
The Screenwriter’s Bible: A Complete Guide to Writing, Formatting, and Selling Your Script, 5th Edition, Expanded & Updated by David Trottier
(Now Write! Screenwriting contributor)
Silman-James Press, 2010
One of the most popular, authoritative, and useful books on screenwriting, this is a friendly guide through the Hollywood morass. The new edition offers expanded coverage of dialogue writing and character development, the latest in proper screenplay format, a new section on jumpstarting your career, new advice on creating and delivering pitches and much more.
Rewrite 2nd Edition: A Step-by-Step Guide to Strengthen Structure, Characters, and Drama in your Screenplay by Paul Chitlik
(Now Write! Screenwriting contributor)
Michael Wiese Productions, 2008
A step-by-step process to take your script from first draft to submission draft. Chitlik reveals the hidden structure of screenplays, sequences, and scenes, as he guides you through the process of examining your draft, restructuring it, and populating it with believable, complex, and compelling characters. Along the way he outlines how to make your action leap off the page and your dialogue crackle.
Learn the secrets to writing a great screenplay from a major movie studio Story Analyst. Master the structure and principles used by 95% of commercial movies by studying detailed breakdowns or “Story Maps” of several recent and classic hits in all different genres.
A lifetime member of the Writer’s Guild of America who has had three feature films produced from his screenplays, Akers offers beginning writers the tools they need to get their screenplay noticed.
Story Design analyzes the dramatic structures found in some of the most commercially successful and popular movies ever produced. This second edition includes detailed analysis of WIZARD OF OZ and AVATAR.
* An essential and inspirational hands-on guide for creating and crafting compelling characters
* An invaluable resource analyzing and referencing over 220 Hollywood, independent and foreign films, offering 34 screenwriting exercises, and providing six templates from fictional scripts
* Accessible, fun, and thought-provoking screenwriting exercises geared to develop characters in each vital element that comprises a successful screenplay.
Learn how to create believable, compelling and gripping characters with distinct characterizations, motivations, and behaviors, and how these people can best drive your plot forward in a meaningful and plausible journey.
If you’re a Now Write! contributor with a writing book not listed here, please post the details as a comment here. Thank you!
Communication through writing is one of the most valuable skills for entrepreneurs.
Posts, tweets, emails, blogs, business plans and booklets are some of the tools we use to educate and engage investors, partners, clients, and customers about the value of our products and services.
These do not have to be dry, boring, or overly complex – on the contrary. Your writing may benefit from some professional polish, but the essence of your own words and style will best convey your company’s reason for being.
This workshop is designed to help free and empower the creative writer in you to brainstorm ideas and more effectively write (and speak) about your business, while deepening your relationship with your own “brand.”
This will be a supportive, non-judgmental approach to creative writing practice, so come prepared to take a step out of your comfort zone and have some fun!
San Antonio Public Library
600 Soledad Street
Free 3-hr parking next door – validate ticket inside the library
Lead by Now Write! editor: Laurie Lamson
Laurie is an award-winning writer with over 80 produced scripts for clients that include banks, universities, health organizations, Levi Strauss and the U.S. Army.
As a lifelong student of creative and dramatic writing, Laurie enjoys sharing support and encouragement with fellow and sister writers and has created many writing workshops.
Get Published is a 5-star podcast about the business of writing and getting published – a valuable resource for authors. Explore all the episodes here.
The host and creator of Get Published is Paul G. Brodie, a 13-times bestselling author.
For the podcast, Paul interviewed me about the Now Write! books and especially putting on panels at writing conferences. Link directly to my interview.
I was honored to also be included in his new compilation book: Get Published Business Book: 75 Stories About Why Getting Published Will Change Your LIfe Both Personally and Professionally.
The Kindle version is available for free through this Friday, August 2 so grab it this week.
My chapter is called “Following My Heart Took Me Out Of My Comfort Zone” in which I talk about working on the Now Write! books and where they lead me. I hope you will enjoy it. – Laurie Lamson