Thursday, September 10, 2015

Dollars & Sense for Writers— Guidelines on Where & When to Spend Your Money—Part Two

by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

Last week, I began this series on Dollars & Sense for Writers Part One. I gave you a run-down on where to start by suggesting you look for a local writers group and an online group or two. Today I’d like to continue by looking at books and magazines for writers.

As a writer, I love books. Beyond that, I love books about writing. I have an extensive library of books on the craft of stringing words together—truthfully more than I need. But early on in my career I just couldn’t pass up a recommended book. Looking back I should have spent more time at the library than on buying books.

Which Books Should I Own and Which Should I Get at the Library—and What About Magazines, are They Still Relevant?
So how do you judge what to buy and what to borrow? Here are the questions I ask that help me determine which I truly need in my personal library.

Is this a book that I will refer back to again and again? Things that fall under this category are: Anything by James Scott Bell, The Emotion Thesaurus, from Angela Ackerman & Becca Puglisi, The Book Buddy, from Susan May Warren, etc.

Is this a book that I’m tempted to highlight and make notes in? Even though it’s an ebook, Imagination @ Work, by Alton Gansky is one of those for me.

Has more than one person recommended this book?

When I’m in doubt, I check the book out of the library (or borrow it from a friend) to see if it meets any of these criteria.

Magazine Subscriptions
I approach magazines with a slightly different mindset. For me, my subscription to Writer’s Digest is worth its weight in gold. Our own Lynn H Blackburn shared a post about What Makes Writer's Digest so Valuable. There’s just so much there. But I’ve migrated from the print subscription to the digital one because I’m overwhelmed with paper. I also have trouble throwing away old magazines.

There are other writing magazines I love, but I usually visit the book store and thumb through them before I buy a specific issue.

Once again, it’s time for you all to chime in. What books do think need to be in a writer’s library and what magazine subscriptions do you find valuable?

Don’t forget to join the conversation!

This series, Dollars & Sense for Writers will be continued on Wednesdays for the following posts.

Edie Melson is the author of numerous books, as well as a freelance writer and editor. Her blog, The Write Conversation, reaches thousands each month. She’s the co-director of the Blue Ridge Mountains ChristianWriters Conference and the Social Media Mentor at My Book Therapy. She’s also the Military Family Blogger at Guideposts. Com, Social Media Director for SouthernWriters Magazine and the Senior Editor for Connect with her on Twitter and Facebook. Don't miss her new book from Worthy Inspired, WHILE MY SOLDIER SERVES.

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