An Uncurated List Of Books Which Helped Me On My Journey

I remember when I first started writing. I didn’t know what I was doing, but I knew that if I wrote, then it would all come together eventually. In those early days, there were no guides or mentors to help me along the way. 

Luckily for you (and me), we live in a time where amazing resources exist online to provide us with advice on how best to navigate our careers as writers and artists. This post is an attempt at curating some of those resources so that you can save yourself some time and energy by following them instead!

7 Books that Helped Me Grow my YouTube Business
Key Takeaways
– The blog discusses a personal journey and the books that played a significant role in it.
– The list includes a diverse range of books that have had a positive impact on the author’s journey.
– The author shares how these books provided inspiration, guidance, and new perspectives.
– The list serves as a valuable resource for anyone seeking book recommendations for personal growth and reflection.
– Reading about the author’s journey and the books that influenced them can be both insightful and motivational.

1. Seizing The White Space By Mark W. Johnson

The first book I want to talk about is Seizing the White Space by Mark W. Johnson. This book is all about using white space in your life, business and writing.

The concept of white space refers to how much empty space there is between paragraphs, chapters, sections, and pages. Most books have plenty of white space because it makes the text easier to read on a page that’s filled with words and not just solid block after solid block of black text (which can get kind of monotonous).

However, many people are afraid of leaving spaces in their work because they feel like it looks sloppy or unfinished when there are blank spaces where there should be words or pictures. In reality, however, leaving these white spaces allows readers time to take breaks from reading so that they can process everything they’ve learned before moving on to new information.

Building a strong foundation for your book writing journey is essential. If you’re a beginner, our guide on quickly starting your book will provide you with practical tips and insights to kickstart your writing process.

2. There Is No Business Plan For Writing A Book By Dan Blank

If you’re writing a book, there is no business plan.

Dan Blank’s book There Is No Business Plan For Writing a Book is exactly what it sounds like: a guide to the business of writing, publishing, and marketing your book.

This book will help you launch your first ebook or print title with confidence and determination. It helps you prepare yourself for the hard work that lies ahead in the process of writing and publishing your first book.

3. The War Of Art By Steven Pressfield

If you are the type of person who procrastinates, then The War of Art is for you. If you’re someone who wants to start writing but doesn’t know where to begin, then The War of Art is for you.

If you want to succeed in life or at anything really, this book will show you how helping with your mindset and how can lead to success. It teaches us how not only do we have the resistance that prevents us from reaching our goals (that is why it is called “Resistance”) but also how those around us may be resistant as well!

This book was written by a Hollywood screenwriter so he knows what he’s talking about when it comes to getting stuff done and persevering through tough times even though he has been successful many times over,  he still describes himself as a “loser-in-process” because there are always more projects on his plate than time in the day.

But that doesn’t stop him from continuing his work anyway!

Crafting a bestseller requires a strategic approach and dedication. Explore the top 15 strategies that can help you write a compelling book that resonates with readers and potentially becomes a hit.

4. Audience, Agency & Influence By Dan Blank

  • The Importance of Audience, Agency & Influence
  • You need to understand your audience. Your audience is the reason you are writing the book in the first place.
  • Knowing your audience will help you determine what content would be most useful for them and how you can deliver it in a way that will make it easy for them to consume.

You also need to understand your agency (the power or right). What do you have control over when marketing and selling books online? Is it simply creating great content and expecting people to find it organically? 

Or do they have more options than just finding something on Google? For example, when someone searches for “how-to-write an ebook” “how-to create an audiobook” or even just “how-to publish an ebook” – there are so many results that come up! 

How does one stand out from all those other authors who want their product/service too? Or maybe even better yet: how does one stand out from all those self-publishing companies who want their product/service too? This is where an understanding agency comes in handy because now we know there’s an opportunity here if done correctly!

Understanding influence means knowing how everyone else thinks about things like what sells well; why something sells well; where customers are going next; etc…

5. Bird By Bird By Anne Lamott

If you’re still trying to figure out how to start writing a book, Bird by Bird is a great place to start. It’s a straightforward guide on the basics of the craft that doesn’t take itself too seriously or get bogged down in technical details. 

The book was written with inspiration from Lamott’s father, who would tell her: “bird by bird.” This meant you should focus on one task at a time and progress slowly with a message that applies equally well when writing fiction or nonfiction.

6. Art & Fear By David Bayles And Ted Orland

The book is about the creative process, but also about overcoming fear. The authors detail how the creative impulse can be broken down into steps and covered in parts so that a project becomes less intimidating to work on. 

They highlight how the heart of any piece of art is found in its process rather than its product, which can help you look at your work with fresh eyes.

This book speaks directly to anyone who has ever wanted to make something but was scared off by their lack of talent or ability. It will give you hope and show you how far your imagination can take you when it’s not held back by self-doubt or fear of failure.

When venturing into the world of non-fiction writing, having a comprehensive guide can be immensely helpful. Dive into the details with our ultimate guide to non-fiction book writing to ensure your work is well-structured and impactful.

7. Anne Lamott’s Bird By Bird (Now On Youtube)

As a former teacher, Anne Lamott’s book Bird by Bird is one of my favorite books on writing and creativity. In the video above, she talks about how to write a book in small chunks. She says that instead of thinking about writing your whole book, you should think about writing a chapter at a time. 

Each chapter should be between 10-15 pages, which makes it manageable and less overwhelming if you’re just starting!

The video also features advice from other writers who share their tips on how they got started writing their novels or memoirs:

Susan Orlean (author) suggests that you “just write every day” because this will help build up your writing muscles over time.

Jeffrey Eugenides (author) talks about how he struggled with writer’s block when he was younger but eventually learned how to deal with it by taking walks outside for fresh air and looking for inspiration inside himself rather than externally.”

8. Show Your Work! By Austin Kleon

It’s tempting to believe that your work is done when you finish writing a book. But putting words on paper is only half the battle. The other half is getting people to read those words, and this requires more than just submitting it to publishing houses. 

You need to get your hands dirty and take advantage of every opportunity available even if it isn’t super-cool or fun for you at first (and sometimes even after).

In Show Your Work!, Austin Kleon writes about how showing our work in all its forms can be an essential part of our creative process: “Showing your work means revealing the steps you took along the way: not just the final product but also drafts, sketches, and mistakes.” 

He also discusses alternative ways to show your work including blogging, social media channels like Instagram, vlogging on YouTube as well as live events such as talks/meetups/conferences etcetera!

9. On Writing Well – William Zinsser

This book is a classic. It’s written in an irreverent, conversational style that makes it easy to read and absorb. It contains lots of useful tips and tricks for becoming a better writer but also includes some really interesting insights into the craft itself.

On Writing Well has helped me understand how different types of writing require different methods: fiction requires something different from business writing, which requires something different from technical documentation.

The book also teaches you about reading and listening (two skills that are often overlooked by writers), so you can learn to absorb information more effectively when reading outside sources or listening to podcasts or audiobooks.

Before embarking on your book writing journey, it’s crucial to be aware of potential challenges and considerations. Learn from the 13 essential things you should know before you start writing, helping you navigate the process more effectively.

10. Stop Stealing Sheep And Find Out How Type Works – Erik Spiekermann, Et Al

This book is about typography. It teaches you how to use typography to improve the readability of your work. It is a must-read for anyone who wants to learn about typography, and it’s also a great reference book for designers who want to know more about the fundamentals of their craft.

This book is meant for beginners, but I think experienced designers will find it useful as well because sometimes we need a reminder that there are still things that we can learn every day.

11. They Don’t Teach Corporate In College – Alexandra Levit

About the book: They Don’t Teach Corporate in College

Summary: This book is written by Alexandra Levit, a career expert, and former corporate recruiter. It’s short and very easy to read. The main idea of this book is that most people are not taught how to succeed at work in college, so they need to learn these things on their own later on.

The important takeaways from this book are: Networking is important (and can be fun!)

Taking risks will help you grow as an individual and a professional

Learning from your mistakes will make you better at what you do (and give you a sense of accomplishment)

Being able to adapt to change is essential for any kind of job – even if it’s just one where you’re working alone like an entrepreneur instead of being part of an organization like Google or Microsoft doing more technical stuff) Learning from people who have different backgrounds than yours can also help expand your perspective as well

12. 23 Ways To Market Your Book Without Being Annoying – Jeff Goins

You need to be aware of your strengths and weaknesses. And the audience you’re trying to reach.

You also need to be aware of the competition the books that are currently out there, who published them, and what they did to market them.

Finally, you should have some idea of what your goals are for marketing this book: how many copies do you want to sell? How quickly? What kind of return on investment are you looking for here? By doing some research here, you can make sure all your marketing activities align with these goals.

13. The Elements Of Style – Strunk, And White (4th Edition)

This is a classic. It’s a must-read for anyone who writes and it should be on every writer’s bookshelf. A good book to have in your library as well.

14. A Writers Mentor – Jenna Avery

A writer’s mentor is someone who understands the craft of writing and can help you navigate the ups and downs of your journey. They might be a published author, or they could just be someone who has been down this road before and wants to help others find their way.

A mentor can give you guidance on how to write a book (and finish it), as well as how to get published. They’re also good people to know when looking for an agent since they’ve likely got some contacts in that area.

15. I’m A Writer, Dammit! – Kyle Marvin

Kyle’s book is a great resource for writers. He has some useful tips on how to overcome writer’s block, and also includes a section on how to avoid burnout as you write your novel.

I took Kyle’s advice seriously and decided that I needed to set aside 2 hours each day to write my novel. This allowed me to make progress every day without feeling overwhelmed by the task at hand or getting discouraged by any unforeseen interruptions in my schedule.

The advice in this book helped me get over the initial hump of starting something new, which was extremely important because it gave me confidence that I could finish my novel!

16. On Writing – Stephen King

Stephen King, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft

I love this book. It’s one of my favorites on this list and helped me immensely during my first year as a self-published author. It was also a huge influence on me when it came to writing in general, even though I don’t read King’s books anymore. 

If you’re looking for some writing tips, or if you just want to get inspired by someone who has achieved so much with their craft and has made millions doing it (not just by being Stephen King), then this is the book for you!

17. Your First 1000 Copies – Tim Grahl

I’ve read a lot of books on writing, publishing, and marketing. Some were great; some were so-so. This one was the best. It has helped me in multiple ways:

  • To write my first book: How To Write A Book In 30 Days Or Less
  • To get it published: Get Your Book Published – The Definitive Guide For Authors Who Want To Make A Living From Their Writing!
  • And to market it successfully on Amazon – How I Sold 10 Books In 2 Weeks On Amazon Using Simple Strategies That Worked Like Magic! (Get Your Book Published Today!)
  • Also sold a few copies through libraries too – How To Get Your Book Into Libraries (And Sell More Books Too!)

Unconventional approaches often lead to unique and remarkable outcomes. Discover an innovative perspective on writing your book with our guide to unconventional book writing, offering fresh insights to inspire your creative process.

18. Steal Like An Artist – Austin Kleon

The only originality that matters is your own. You can’t worry about being original, or trying to be different to stand out. None of that matters if you don’t have the work to back it up!

Don’t worry about perfection, either. There’s no such thing as perfection in writing you constantly have to revise and rewrite until something feels right and complete. And even then, you’ll probably keep going back and tweaking things until they feel right again and again, and again… It never ends! But that’s okay because this is all part of the process!

And lastly: Don’t worry about rules! Yes, there are some basics for good writing (like spelling properly), but otherwise, go wild with whatever works for YOU!


If you’re like me, you want to write a book. But maybe you don’t know how to do it. Or maybe you know how but don’t have the time or energy. 

Either way, I’m here today to help! I’ve put together this list of books that I think can help anyone who wants to write their book, from those just starting with no idea where to start up to experienced authors who are looking for new ways of doing things differently so they can get more done in less time (and enjoy their lives while doing so).

Further Reading

Here are some additional resources to further explore related topics:

Max Porter’s All-Time Favorite Books: Discover the books that have left a lasting impact on acclaimed author Max Porter’s literary journey.

Books for Finding Your Purpose: If you’re on a quest to discover your life’s purpose, this list offers insightful book recommendations to guide you on your journey.

By the Book: John Hodgman: Delve into the reading habits and literary preferences of John Hodgman in this captivating interview-style feature.


What are Max Porter’s favorite books of all time?

Max Porter shares his all-time favorite books that have influenced and resonated with him throughout his literary career.

How can books help in finding one’s purpose?

Books can provide valuable insights, perspectives, and guidance that contribute to self-discovery and the journey of finding one’s purpose in life.

What is “By the Book” with John Hodgman?

“By the Book” is an interview series that delves into the reading habits and book preferences of individuals, offering a unique glimpse into their literary world.

How do I explore a variety of genres based on Max Porter’s recommendations?

Max Porter’s favorite books cover a range of genres. Exploring his recommendations can expose you to diverse literary experiences.

Can reading books contribute to personal growth?

Yes, reading books that align with your interests, goals, and aspirations can expand your knowledge, broaden your perspective, and contribute to your personal growth journey.