Here’s a list of wonderful craft of writing books that are MUST HAVES for a writer’s library – whether on a shelf or on an e-reader.
Dwight Swain, Techniques of the Selling Writer
Christopher Vogler, The Writer’s Journey: Mythic Structure For Writers
James Scott Bell, The Art of War for Writers, Plot & Structure, Revision & Self-Editing
Michael Hauge, Writing Screenplays that Sell
Michael A. Arnzen and Heidi Ruby Miller, Many Genres, One Craft
PLOTTER or PANTSER?
You have to decide for yourself which works best for you. I tend to write the first chapter up to the inciting incident, and then wrestle with an outline, character sketches, research, etc. But I have totally tried the “seat of the pants” method (The Key to Love for example) where I wrote whatever came to mind, with a vague idea in my head, and then filled in the gaps and rewrote from the beginning. Either ways works. It’s the writer’s choice.
When it comes to plotting, this “Story Arc” diagram is the best any writer can follow. Click here for resource