5 books about freelance writing for your vacation

This week I'm in Rhode Island visiting my OH's parents  so I'll keep this brief as there're beaches to explore, seafood to be eaten and, of course, wine to be drunk. 

And because holidays are also about another great love of mine, books, I asked some freelancer friends what reading material they'd recommend for a career boost from the comfort of my deck chair.

Here's what they suggested, plus a couple of my own favourites:

On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft – Stephen King
This is one of the first books I ever bought on writing after finding it in a thrift store while I was still in college and it's still one of the best. I'm currently re-reading it for probably the fifth time.

Big Magic – Elizabeth Gilbert
What it lacks in advice on the actual craft of writing, Big Magic makes up for in its ideas about creativity. Most importantly, it smashes through the myth that all artists must be broke, tortured, or otherwise unhappy souls to be any good at their jobs. As one friend told me: "It feels like one big permission slip".

Writing Tools: 50 Essential Strategies for Every Writer – Roy Peter Clark
Clark teaches writing at the Poynter Institute, which is one of my go-to sources for journalism news and tips, so even though I haven't read this yet I'm betting it's going to be good. What's more, it's available as a free PDF download. I also downloaded Clark's How to Write Short: Word Craft for Fast Times as an audiobook.

Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life – Ann Lamott
Another book I haven't got round to reading yet but which was recommended to me by someone I very much respect. Her advice with any writing project which may feel overwhelming is to break it down piece by piece, or "bird by bird".

You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life – Jen Sincero
Not strictly a book about writing (I'm not usually one for self-help books), but a contact described this to me as "fire flames" and sometimes that's what you need. Sincero is also a writing coach, and a lot of this book aims to help readers overcome their imposter syndrome (sound familiar) and learn to make more money. I picked it up at the airport and only just started reading it, but so far, so good.

Abigail Edge