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    Some of my favorite books on writing:

    • HBR Guide to Better Business Writing by Bryan Garner. Don’t let the title put you off. It’s definitely not just for business writing. In addition to advice about style and usage, Garner gives concrete tips to avoid writer’s block.
    • Writing Science in Plain English by Anne Greene. Again, not just for science writing—maybe especially useful for people who write technical documentation. (This book models much of its advice on the Joseph Williams book below. I think that’s great, but you may not want both.)
    • The New Oxford Guide to Writing by Thomas Kane. I remember especially like this book’s sections on structure and paragraphing.
    • Style: Toward Clarity and Grace by Joseph Williams (warning: the link goes to a PDF of an early edition). Williams offers more argument and analysis than most books on writing. That is, he doesn’t just give rules. he explains and argues for the advice he offers. Beware: even after Williams passed away, the publisher keeps making new editions of this book, and the prices for current editions are wildly high. You can find used copies of the older editions cheaply at the Strand, AbeBooks, or other places. (I also think that the earlier editions are better.)
    • Clear and Simple as the Truth by Francis-Noël Thomas and Mark Turner. The authors dissect and describe one very effective writing style, which they call “classic style.” (Think Orwell, Naipaul, and Didion.) This one is the most theoretical of all the books here, but it’s fascinating and has tons of examples of classic style.
    • Clean, Well-Lighted Sentences by Janis Bell. A solid, clear, and short book on common writing gotchas. Ben Yagoda’s How to Not Write Bad is similar. These two are more elementary with lots of lists of what you should do or not do.
    • The Associated Press Guide to Punctuation by Rene Cappon. Short and to the point. Another good book on punctuation is The best punctuation book, period. by June Casagrande.)
    • Line by Line: How to Improve Your Own Writing by Claire Kehrwald Cook. Tons of advice about detailed, small-scale (almost persnickety) editing.
    • The Chicago Guide to Grammar, Punctuation, and Usage by Bryan Garner. A reference book rather than something you can read straight through, but Garner is always good.
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      Thanks for the list! I’ll probably end up putting some of those in the other resources chapter.

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      Another good resource: developers.google.com – technical writing courses. Though the page has “courses” in the title, it links to pre-class materials for those courses (one, two) that are freely available and useful on their own.

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        It’s been a few years since I initially posted this. And while it’s not yet complete, it does have quite a bit more content than it did at the time. :)

        The biggest recent change is that it has a new website which makes things much nicer to read online than browsing markdown files on GitHub.