"Man acts as though he were the shaper and master of language, while in fact language remains the master of man." -- Heidegger
I've only got one for fiction: Making Shapely Fiction by Jerome Stern. Nothing better in my experience.Cheers, A
Here are a few that I've used (for poetry):In the Palm of Your Hand: The Poet's Portable Workshop--Steve KowittThe Making of a Poem (A Norton Anthology of Poetic Forms)--ed. Mark Strand and Eavan BolandThe Teachers and Writers Handbook of Poetic Forms--ed. Ron PadgettThe Triggering Town: Lectures and Essays on Poetry and Writing--Richard Hugo. The Hugo is great for students to buy; the others I've mainly used only sections of to discuss in class.
Bret's book--Naming the World--has some cool exercises. I really like Baxter's Burning Down the House. Two classics--Forster's Aspects of the Novel and Gardner's The Art of Fiction--hold up well.
Totally agree with Antoine about the Stern. Haven't read Bret's yet, but I second the Baxter, Gardner, and Forster, too. They're all solid--although the Baxter's not really for beginners, I don't think. I learned a lot from Janet Burroway, but I don't know if I'd make it a course backbone anymore. It's too expensive and it's structural in some make-believe ways. Points of View by Moffett and McElheny is a little gem. Cheap mass-market, broad selection of stories, and a valuable approach to POV that goes beyond the categories of 1st/2nd/3rd and close/omniscient, etc.
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