The 5 best writing books no one ever told you about

From ‘The Procrastination Equation’ to ‘Spunk & Bite,’ here is a batch to help get you writing and keep your prose clean and clear.

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Whenever I read lists of recommended writing books, I’m usually disappointed to find a roundup of the usual suspects: Stephen King, Ann Lamott, William Zinsser, and William Strunk. Not that there’s anything wrong with any of these writers or their books. They’re all fine. Inspiring, even. Useful.

But I read them all years ago. I’d like some fresh inspiration, thank you very much.

So here’s my list. Five authors you probably haven’t heard of. Five books that are always filed, ready for action, on my writing bookshelves, if not already in my hands:

1. “Sin and Syntax: How to Craft Wickedly Effective Prose,” by Constance Hale.

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