Reference Book for a WriterA reference book for a writer
Outstanding reference works for authors and writers
In spite of the high level of accessibility of spell checking, terminology management tools, on-line glossaries and stylesheets, any serious author still needs a few good reference works. Yes, these are all "reference works", as we called them as children. Besides the usual vocabulary, vocabularies, examples and citations, The American Heritage Dictionary provides guidance on the use and stylistic certainty of its "renowned" (and still controversial) panel of use.
Merriam-Webster's Collegiate is the shortest and most affordable ABAPictionary, 11. Alternate text for UK writers: 2 nd Oxford and Stevenson Oxford dictionaries of English (2010). Garner's Modern English Usage has become the reference work for US authors and editorial staff since its first issue in 1998.
According to the writer David Foster Wallace, its peculiarity is that "its writer is prepared to accept that a working vocabulary is not a scripture or even a text book, but only a recording of a clever person's efforts to find the answer to certain very tricky questions". Garner clearly and humorously abandons his prescription approaches, as he says, "through a thorough investigation of the real use in contemporary processed prose".
The AP Stylebook (revised annually) contains over 5,000 articles on language, orthography, punctuation and use. If you have a question that other textbooks don't answer, go to the AP Stylebook: The odds are good that the answer is here. If you have opted for an edited version of the Guide (such as the AP Stylebook or the Chicago Guide of Style), you should supplement it with Amy Einsohn's intelligent and handy guide with the subtitle "A Guide for Book Publishing and Corporate Communications".
The Copyeditor's Handbook is aimed at "new and up-and-coming editors who will work on non-fiction titles, magazine essays, newsletters and company publications" and is both a clear text book and a simple reference work. When writing for a blogs or website, you may want to put this book at the top of your mailing lists.