Creative Writing

This IPL pathfinder is designed for individuals interested in creative writing, either for personal fulfillment or as a career pursuit. This pathfinder focuses primarily on prose fiction (novel and short-story writing), although many of the sources are also useful for individuals interested in poetry or screenwriting. Both print and web-based sources are included.

Resources for the Writing Process | Periodicals about Writing | Associations for Writers | Market Guides | Finding Additional Information

Resources For The Writing Process

Both stylistic and mechanical elements of writing play a part in the quality of a finished piece of work. Creative writers can benefit from consulting writing-oriented resources in order to deal with uncertainties in the writing process or simply to improve their own writing skills.

Grammar Handbook
University of Urbana-Champaign, Writers’ Workshop.

This section of the Writers’ Workshop site includes information about English grammar. Highlights include sentence elements, parts of speech, and common usage problems.

The Portable Creative Writing Workshop
By Pat Boran. Salmon Publishing, Ltd., 1999.

This book is a development manual for writers of fiction and poetry. It contains information about the principles of writing as well as exercises for developing writing skills.

Writer’s Mind: Crafting Fiction
By Richard Cohen. NTC Publishing Group, 1995.

This book focuses on crafting fiction, including elements of writing and the writing process. It also includes career advice and educational commentary for creative writers. Throughout the book, at the end of each section, a list of resources related to the previously discussed topic is included.

Periodicals About Writing

Periodicals devoted to writing are excellent resources for creative writers. These publications contain numerous useful articles on aspects of the writing process and developments in the writing industry. They occasionally contain interviews with established writers which can provide inspiration or information for up-and-coming creative writers who are looking to enter the commercial writing market.

Poets &Writers
Poets &Writers, Inc.

This web site for the bi-monthly print magazine includes selected articles from the current issue, as well as back issues. It also offers a section titled “Literary Horizons” which provides free access to their online directory of American Poets and Fiction Writers, resource guides for writers, and advice on publishing.

Writer’s Digest
F &W Publications, Inc.

This magazine, available in both print and online formats, is dedicated to all types of writing, including fiction and poetry. It also includes information on the publishing industry and features spotlights on individual markets.

The Internet Writing Journal
Writers Write, Inc.

This online magazine features articles about all genres of writing, writing skills, and the publishing industry. Articles on specific types of writing, such as screenwriting, playwriting, and songwriting are also occasionally included.

Associations For Writers

Associations focused on writers provide opportunities for creative writers to network and seek resources. Additional benefits and requirements for membership vary depending on the specific association.

The Authors Guild
330 West 42nd Street
29th Floor
New York, NY 10036
(212) 563-5904

This association is concerned with issues of free speech, copyright protection, and fair compensation. It supplies news and contract advice. The organization claims to have the largest membership of published authors in the United States.

There are numerous associations that are genre-specific. For example:
Horror Writers Association (HWA)
P.O. Box 50577
Palo Alto, CA 94303

This worldwide organization focuses on promoting the interests of writers in the horror and dark fantasy genres.

Market Guides

Market guides are useful tools for finding submission information for various publishers.

Writer’s Guide To Book Editors, Publishers, and Literary Agents
Prima Publishers.

Each annual edition of this book profiles numerous U.S. and Canadian publishers. Additionally, it contains interviews with various literary agents.

Writer’s Market
Writers Digest Books.

This book, published annually, is a massive directory listing numerous publishers and editors. It includes contact information, submission guidelines, and other useful material.

Poet’s Market
Writers Digest Books.

This book is the poetry equivalent of Writer’s Market.

Finding Additional Information

Additional resources can be found at public and university libraries under call numbers in the 800’s of the Dewey Decimal Classification System and in the PN section of the Library of Congress Classification System. Useful resources may also be found under the following Library of Congress Subject Headings:
Creative Writing
Motion Picture Authorship
Motion Picture Plays—Technique

This pathfinder created by Jack Visnaw