08 May 2008

Booking Through Thursday: Manual Labour

Writing guides, grammar books, punctuation how-tos ... do you read them? Not read them? How many writing books, grammar books, dictionaries–if any–do you have in your library?
One dictionary; one English-French dictionary for those annoying untranslated bits in older novels; one thesaurus that I found at the Bookfest and thought was too good a bargain to pass up. I don’t look at them much - only when I need to, and then only when I remember. The dictionary got more of a work-out in years past, though - it was once my preferred choice of bedtime reading! (And, yes, I believe my mother does have photographic evidence somewhere!)

I have read writing guides, but I don’t actually own any, and I haven’t borrowed one in a while. My work-in-progress has moved on to the plotting-and-researching stage, and I’m becoming more hopeful about the possibility of taking part in NaNoWriMo this year (Yay!!). As for grammar and punctuation guides - I don’t even read those and persist in thinking I know enough already.


Chrisbookarama said...

I use Google languages for those pesky untranslated bits.

Anonymous said...

Some writing guides are insightful but whenever I get my hands on a punctuation guide, I give it to somebody else (namely the newspaper staff I work with).

(a copy editor)

Anonymous said...

Strange as it might seem I would have thought that a dictionary was too compulsive for bed time reading. Once I look up one word I always seem to find half a dozen others that I need to check as well and those lead to another dozen or so. I'd never get to sleep.

Jessica said...

I just came across your blog today and I am really enjoying it. I like your BTT posts and have seen them on another book blog too. Are you the originator of the questions? If not where do you find them?

Tia Nevitt said...

I have Eats, Shoots and Leaves and Strunk & White. Eats, Shoots and Leaves is a humor book, but it will incidentally teach you a lot about punctuation. At least the British variety. I loved it and highly recommend it.

heather (errantdreams) said...

I tend to enjoy books about writing (not dry style/grammar guides, but the fascinating ones) just because it's neat to get ideas and see how various authors think it should be done.

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Header image shows detail of A Young Girl Reading by Jean-Honoré Fragonard, c. 1776