Win, Win, Win! Stuff Your Stocking With Writerly Goodies

Becca and I love the holiday season–everything is colorful and cheery, the house is filled with cinnamon and ginger as we flex up our baking muscles, and we get to take time to tell you just what you mean to us. Seriously, you guys are the very best readers out there! We are so lucky to have you in our world.

Another terrific thing about this season is that we can celebrate the things we love, and around here, that’s all things writerly. This year with the launch of One Stop For Writers, our mantra is “Elevate your Storytelling.” So Becca, Lee & I sat down and listed out the top three books we feel have elevated our own craft beyond measure.

Why? So we can give them away to you!

Of course, this exercise caused some issues. Choosing ONLY 3 books? So hard! Plus, several of our “top 3” book choices were the same. And I don’t want to point fingers, but certain individuals *coughBeccacoughLeecough* STOLE some of my choices.

But no worries, there are so many amazing books out there that have helped us become stronger writers that we were able to sort it out.

With that, I bring you the 9 Wonders of the Writing Reference World:

2016 Writers Helping Writers Giveaway1. On Writing  2. First Five Pages  3. Self-Editing For Fiction Writers  4. Writing Screenplays That Sell  5. Description  6. Save the Cat  7. 21st Century Fiction  8. Stein on Writing  9. Structuring Your Novel

Want to elevate your storytelling and win a kindle copy of one of these “best of the best” craft books? Of course you do!

To Enter:

One Stop For Writers Gift Tag_1

Grow your craft with One Stop’s powerful library. Certificates never expire.

1) Post in the comment section with your TOP 4 book choices. (This will be by random draw, and first come first serve.)

2) Tell us what book has elevated your storytelling. We would love to hear what has given your writing a boost!

3) Pay-it-forward by naming a writer friend (first name is fine if you prefer) who has helped you. If you win, we will send them a 1 month Gift Certificate for One Stop For Writers for their own stocking.

Must be 18, no purchase necessary, open to all unless prohibited by law. For the full legal rules and disclaimers, go here.


As always, social sharing is appreciated, but never a condition of our giveaways. Winners will be drawn and announced on Saturday, December 12th!


PSSST! It is Becca’s Birthday today (December 9th), so if you see her online, please send her best wishes! 

Becca’s Twitter

Becca’s Facebook

happy B day

Image: PublicDomainPictures @ Pixabay


Angela is a writing coach, international speaker, and bestselling author who loves to travel, teach, empower writers, and pay-it-forward. She also is a founder of One Stop For Writers, a portal to powerful, innovative tools to help writers elevate their storytelling.
This entry was posted in About Us, Buying Books, One Stop For Writers, Reading, Stocking Stuffers, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.
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Shutta Crum
Shutta Crum
4 years ago

So hard to pick my top 4 writing books. (Some are not on your list. For. Ex. FEELING LIKE A CHILD by Jerry Griswold and TAKE JOY by Yolen.)

But of these 9, I’d choose:
1.Stephen King, ON WRITING

I always keep Griswold’s book in mind as I write. (See above.) It keeps me grounded in the child-like world.

So many writer friends have helped me get to where I am. But I really have to thank my friend Hope from my crit group. She has a good eye and knows how to critique.


Tamar Sloan
4 years ago

1. On Writing
2. The First Five Pages
3. Self-Editing for Fiction Writers
4. Stein on Writing
I love writing craft books, Save the Cat has been fabulous, but I also love the Emotion Thesaurus. Thank you for publishing it.
My critique partner, Kat Colmer, has been a wonderful support and valuable friend in polishing and tightening my works.

Have a wonderful and happy holiday.

4 years ago

Thanks for this opportunity, very much appreciated.

1. Stein on Writing
2. Writing 21st Century Fiction
3. On Writing
4.Structuring Your Novel

As s writer working to become a Self-published Author, your site has been an invaluable lifesaver for me. 🙂 I wish I had someone tto SD hare this with, but at this time, I do not.

4 years ago

First Five Pages, Description, Writing Screenplays that sell, and Structuring your novel. Gosh that’s hard… You and Becca have helped me so much. I’ve adored you two’s awesome thesauruses since Muse, plus the workshop in Muse online. Another writer would be Katie Saladis, one of my CCers at critique circle.

4 years ago

1/ Writing 21st century fiction
2/ Stein on writing
3/ First five pages
4/ Self editing for fiction writers

The only book I’ve read so far is structuring your novel.

Don’t have any writing friends so have no names to offer. Am working on my first book and learning as I go. This website has provided wonderful insights. Thank you.

Jeanne Dykstra
Jeanne Dykstra
4 years ago

Thank you for such a wonderful contest. I appreciate all of your writing insights. And a belated but very Happy Birthday to Becca!

My choices are:
1. Save the Cat!
2. Writing 21st Century Fiction
3. Self-Editing for Fiction Writers
4. The First Five Pages

The Emotional Thesaurus is the book that elevated my writing. You can loose your reader if you don’t include language that touches a reader’s senses, putting the reader into the character’s scene and making such connection that the reader doesn’t want to put the book down.

My Pay-It-Forward writing friend, who is does the fiercest of critiques, is Frank.
Merry Christmas,

Trevann Rogers
4 years ago

Save the cat
Structuring your novel
21century fiction

The book that helped me most was Weekend Novelist because it gave me a structure when I first considered writing a novel but had no idea where or how to start.

Pay it forward to Robyn B.

Devlyn Dunne
4 years ago

1. First Five Pages
2. Save the Cat
3. Self-editing for Fiction Writers
4. Writing screenplays that Sell
The books that have been most helpful are:
The Emotion Thesaurus (Thank you this is so good) and Getting into Character by Brandilyn Collins.
I would like to pay it forward to my writing buddy, Briana. We met at a writers conference, have done NaNoWriMo together and support and encourage each other.
Happy Birthday, Becca!
Thank you for all you do.
Blessed Yuletide!

Christina Ochs
4 years ago

Save the Cat
Self-Editing for Fiction Writers
Writing 21st Century Fiction

A writing book I go back to again and again is Elizabeth George’s “Write Away.” As a fellow “left-brained” writer, I feel like she gets me and some of my writing issues.

So many people have helped me with my writing, but if I have to choose one for a prize, it’ll be Trish Bailey, one of my oldest and most steadfast writing buddies.

Happy Holidays to all of you!

4 years ago

Making the list was easy since I already own four of the eight. :0)
1. Save the Cat
2. Writing Screen Plays
3. Writing 21st Century Fiction
4. Stein on Writing

The other four have all contributed to the development of my craft but Description was definitely my “aha” book.

One of many authors who have helped me (and continues to do so) is Mel. (So, tough to name only one!)

Thank you so much!

Janet Kerr
Janet Kerr
4 years ago

My first 4, Save the cat, Writing screenplays that sell, description, Stein on writing.
The most helpful has been the self-editing book.

Juliana Schmidt
Juliana Schmidt
4 years ago

Oh my! This is one amazing giveaway!

My top four book choices:
1. First Five Pages
2. Save The Cat
3. Stein on Writing
4. Description

Both On Writing and Self-Editing for Fiction Writers have been very helpful to me on my writing journey. Of course, the Emotion Thesaurus has been brilliant as well! I also adore Bird By Bird and Zen In The Art of Writing. Oh, and If You Want To Write is magnificent!

The friend I’d love to pay it forward to is Jaclyn. She’s a wonderful writer and an amazing friend.

Thanks for hosting this giveaway. You two are fantastic!

Jerry Doty
Jerry Doty
4 years ago

This will sound like ai am sucking up to win, but homestly I came to your site today to thank you for three amazing books that are helping me. I have written musicals for over 40 years and now converting them to novels for children. I would be absolutely lost without these three:
1) The Emotonal Thesaurus,
2) The Positive Trait Thesaurus and
3)The Negative Trait Thesaurus.
They have helped me flesh out my characters like never before and keep each one unique. Even best friends and twins are distinguishable to the reader without the need to constanly use tsheir names. I cannot recommend them strong enough. Maybe someday I will write another comment telling exactly how I used them (hint: it was still a lot of time and work, but extremely well spent).
Oh, my 4the book is: The Plot Thickens by Noah Lukeman.

Jenni Wiltz
4 years ago

1. On Writing
2. Self-Editing for Fiction Writers
3. Save the Cat
4. First Five Pages

Which book elevated my storytelling? So many! But two in particular – Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott and How to Write Best-Selling Fiction by Dean Koontz. Anne’s book gives me courage and Koontz’s book gives me smarts – you need both in this business.

Cheers to my writer friend, Carmen, who is working on a non-fiction book about tennis – we went to grad school together, took a memoir writing class together, and I’m constantly inspired by the way she incorporates what she learns in life to writing and vice versa.

Thank you for hosting such a wonderful giveaway!

Paula Brierley
Paula Brierley
4 years ago

So many books. So little time. Cliché that is just so true. My 4? On Writing, Save the Cat, First Five Pages, and Writing 21st Century Fiction. My favorite book so far and the one that has moved me to write more and to write better is Story Trumps Structure. And I have to say it is hard to choose just one.

And an award to my long time friend and writing buddy, Roxy Scull. We encourage each other, understand our feet dragging excuses, and on top of that, she has some really terrific story line ideas. We write well together separately. Our genres are on opposite ends of the spectrum but that is actually a plus for us.

Mia Mckimmy
4 years ago
Reply to  Paula Brierley

1. Stephen King On Writing
2. Description
3. Save The Cat
4. Writing 21st Century Fiction

I also keep my Emotional Thesaurus close at hand, and. I loved Self-Editing for Fiction Writers.
I’d like to add my writing friend, Sherrie Morgan, to the list.

4 years ago

This is a really awesome giveaway – thank you! 😀

And belated birthday, Becca!!! ^_^

1) TOP 4 book choices:

1. Description
2. Save the Cat
3. Stein On Writing
4. Structuring Your Novel

2) A few things, but I’d say mostly beta readers, reading tips and tricks about ways to write, the Emotion Thesaurus actually helped big time. I think, basically, the more I write, the more my storytelling abilities elevate!

3) Definitely have to shout out to Wendy Vogel – @drwendyv – for my paranormal mystery manuscript since she helped me so much with it – not only beta reading, and editing, but also helping me go toward a HEA with more romance, and basically really adding to the storyline.

I also have to shout out to M. Susanne Wiggins – @M_Swiggins – who’s currently helping me with my Dark Fantasy Romance manuscript – she beta read it, and is now editing it, as well as adding her thoughts about the story as a whole, as well as inconsistencies, etc.

Carol Taylor
4 years ago

Save The Cat, Self editing for Fiction Writers, Story Trumps Structure,The Emotion Thesaurus which to me is a great help as a new writer that and my friend and mentor Annie( better known ) as Anne Louise O’Connell who without I would not be writing, she is my rock.

Barry Featheringill
Barry Featheringill
4 years ago

Outlining Your Novel
Structure Your Novel
Outline to Finish Line

Want to pay it forward to Harold Campbell my ‘Scribophile’ friend who gave me great advise as I begin to work to become a writer

Abigail Reynolds
4 years ago

1, 8, 7, and 9 please!

Anne LaMott’s Bird by Bird taught me the most about being a writer, though The Emotion Thesaurus is definitely the book I turn to most often! And I’d love to pay it forward to my friend Maria Grace.

Thanks for the giveaway!

Ruth Nestvold
4 years ago

Writing Screenplays that sell
Structuring Your Novel
Stein on Writing
Writing 21st Century Fiction

Save the Cat is a book that has really changed the way I think about fiction and helped me a lot in brainstorming new ideas.

Paying forward: Tamela, a great writer who has critiqued many of my works and helped me immensely!

Cathy Peper
4 years ago

2, 5, 6 and 7

There are so many wonderful books out there it is hard to narrow it down, but I’ll go with the Negative Trait Thesaurus and Take off Your Pants.
The writer friend who has helped me the most throughout the years is Teri.

Jane Flagello
4 years ago

What a generous contest. Thank you! The Emotional Thesaurus is a great aid to my writing – so Thank you also for that!

Choosing is hard. These all sound great. I’d love #2, #3, #5, #9.

Blessings of the season!

Wendy McLeod MacKnight

Love this! What a wonderfully generous gift to the many of us who count on your blog to help us be the best writers we can be!

1) the first five pages, save the cat, Stein on Writing, Writing Screenplays that sells
2) Books that have elevated my storytelling include: The Plot Whisperer, Writing Irresistible KidLit, Wired for Story, All of your Thesauruses and Bird by Bird
3) Faith!

Robin Storey
4 years ago

Description, Save the Cat, Structuring Your Novel and Self Editing for Fiction Writers. Story Engineering by Larry Brooks has been really useful for me in plotting my novels. I would like to nominate my writing critique partner Pam Mariko, always ready to read my novel at short notice and crack open the champagne!

Sherrey Meyer
4 years ago

9, 8, 7, 6.

Biggest impact on my writing came with reading Lee Gutkind’s You Can’t Make This Stuff Up. And then, of course, I must mention Stephen King’s On Writing and William Zinsser’s On Writing Well.

Which of my writing friends/associates has helped me and deserves a gift certificate? It’s really hard to narrow down. I’ve had so many mentors in the few years I’ve been writing. I’d have to say Mary Gottschalk. In writing guest posts for her blog, Mary did a beautiful job of critiquing and teaching me the correct way to present my topic and my writing. I’m grateful for every little drop of red ink that came via email.

Jean Wilund
4 years ago

3, 7, 8, & 9

The Emotion Thesaurus, Negative & Positive Trait Thesaurus, & Emotion Amplifiers have all been a tremendous help to me. They’re a gold mine of help. Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott is also a favorite of mine.

I’d love to pay it forward to my editor, Toastmasters mentor and encouraging friend and author Lori Hatcher.

Thanks for your generosity and the great articles and helps you provide us aspiring authors!

Merry Christmas!

4 years ago

1. Structuring your Novel, 2. The first Five Pages 3. Writing Screenplays that sell 4. Writing in the 21st Century

Save the Cat has elevated my writing. I’ve studied it and read all 3. I also think K.M. Weiland has helped. I have always wanted a paper copy of her book.

Judy who allowed me into the critique group and is a wonderful mentor.

Morgan Watts
4 years ago

2, 3, 6 and 9 pretty please! The Emotion Thesaurus is my pick of the most helpful tool for me too….love it…use it all the time. And I would have to pick Laura Boon Russell, my critique partner as the person I’d like to pay it forward to….her help to me has been invaluable.
Merry Christmas to you all at One Stop For Writers/Writers Helping Writers and thanks for a great year of helping all of us writers out there….much appreciated! And happy belated birthday Becca!
Morgan Watts

Sheryl McLean-Houle
Sheryl McLean-Houle
4 years ago

9, 7, 2 & 5.

Self-Editing for Fiction Writers has been a great tool. I’d look at my drafts and had no clue where to start making it better. That book has me revising and editing in a way I know is helping make my manuscript much tighter.

Paying it forward to my friend Lola.

Ellen Mulholland
4 years ago


I’ve boosted my writing by writing! NaNoWriMo showed that I can write every day. In addition, a writing community that supports and pushes helps me achieve my goals.

My critique partner Gwynne Jackson is invaluable!

(Happy Belated Birthday, Becca!)