My Reference Library: Remember That You Asked for This

January 17, 2020



I get a questions about my reference library. (OK, so it's more along the lines of "where the heck did you come up with that?") So here's a list of almost every title on my bookshelf. 


By category and in no particular order, with links:



(Seriously, I use these nearly every time I start a new story.)


Screenwriting Tricks for Authors and Screenwriters by Alexandra Sokoloff


The Complete Writers Guide to Heroes and Heroines by Tami Cowden, Carolyn LeFever and Sue Viders


And as I write the Mystic Bayou series, the two following books have been absolutely invaluable:


Monsters You Should Know by Emma Sancartier


The Mythical Creatures Bible by Brenda Rosen






Before anyone thinks I’m all fancy and cerebral, a good number of these were textbooks for my master’s of fine arts program. 


The Writers Workshop by Alan Zeigler


Released into Language by Wendy Bishop


Writers Guide to Character Traits by Linda Edelstein


The Negative Trait Thesaurus by Angela Ackerman and Becca Peglisi


20 Master Plots and How to Build Them by Ronald Tobias


How to Write a Selling Screenplay by Christopher Keane


Lew Hunter’s Screenwriting 434 by Lew Hunter


Writing a Romance Novel for Dummies by Leslie Wainger

I KNOW, it sounds funny for a professional author with ten years experience to have a “For Dummies” book, but I bought this waaay back before I even wrote my first (never to see the light of day) romance novel. It WAS a valuable source of information and I consider it a sort of good luck charm. It’s moved with me four times now. And so it deserves a spot on the shelf.


Teach Yourself: Writing a Romantic Novel by Donna Baker


Writers Workshop of Horror by Michael Knost


Adventures in Screen Trade by William Goldman


The Elements of Grammar by Margaret Shertzer


Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Brown and Dave King







10,000 Ghost Stories by Lisa K. Webster and Jason Hook


Black Cats and Evil Eyes by Chloe Rhodes


A Field Guide to Demons, Fairies, Fallen Angels, and Other

Subversive Spirits by Carol K. Mack and Dinah Mack


Wicca: A Guide for The Solitary Practitioner by Scott Cunningham


To Ride a Silver Broomstick by Silver RavenWolf


The Complete Book of Spells, Curses and Magical Recipes by Leonard R.N. Ashley


Giants, Monsters and Legends by Carol Rose


The Penguin Book of Witches by Katherine Howe


Don’t Know Much About Mythology by Kenneth Davis


Wisconsin's Most Haunted by Craig Nehrin





How Chance and Stupidity Have Changed History by Eric Durschmied


History’s Greatest Decisions by Bill Price


History’s Greatest Blunders by Ian Whitelaw


History’s Greatest Deceptions by Eric Chaline


The Forgotten History of America by Cormac O’Brien







Young Witches and Warlocks by Isaac Asimov and Others

This was one of my favorite library books to check out when I was a kid. It took me years to track down a copy online. It's the perfect mix of fantasy and sci-fi. 


Edgar Cayce on ESP


Forbidden Knowledge: 101 Things NOT Everyone Should Know How to Do by Michael Powell


Forbidden Knowledge Sex: 101 Sensual Acts NOT Everyone Should Know How to Do by Claire Bailey

YES, I did think I was buying one and ended up with the other. I won't tell you which is which. 


101 Ways to Kill a Zombie by Rob Pearlman


How to Survive a Sharknado by Andrew Shaffer

If you knew my editor, you would know why this is funny. 


Gypsy Law: Romani Tradition and Culture by Walter Weyrauch


The Private Investigator’s Handbook: The Do-It-Yourself Guide to Protect Yourself, Get Justice or Get Even by Chuck Chambers


World Mythology in Bite Sized Chunks by Mark Daniels


Old Wives Lore by Polly Bloom


Irish Fairy and Folk Tales by WB Yeats


Greek Legends and Stories by MV Seton-Williams


The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell


Myths and Legends by Jake Jackson


Myth and Legends by Phillip Wilkinson


The Illustrated Encyclopedia of World Mythology by Arthur Cotterell


The Nightmare Dictionary: Discover What Causes Your Nightmare and What Your Bad Dreams Mean by Adams Media


Legendary Ladies by Ann Shen


Bad Girls Throughout History by Ann Shen


Sacred Crystals by Hazel Raven

I will admit. I bought it because the cover was pretty. But it’s been very useful, particularly since I started writing the Sorcery and Society series. 


Mackinac Island: Three Hundred Fifty Years of History by Robert Benjamin


Haunts of Mackinac by Todd Clement


The Illustrate History of Weaponry by Chuck Wills






Time Life Mysteries of the Unexplained 


Time Life Mysteries of the Past


Time-Life Bizarre Phenomena

The Time-Life books I couldn't find online. I inherited them from my grandparents. Grandma and Grandpa were THE MOST sensible people I've ever known. I asked Grandma once if she believed in ghosts and she said, "If I can't see it, it's not there." I have no idea why they had three Time-Life books on supernatural and bizarre phenomena. I can only imagine they bought a bunch of Civil War documentaries and the weird books were a free gift. Either way, as a kid, I would park in a corner at every family gathering and DEVOUR these books. They're probably the place my interest in the absolutely weird started. I don't necessarily use them often, but I'm so grateful to have them. 


Weird Michigan by Linda S. Godfrey


Weird Kentucky by Jeffrey Scott Holland




Books I think any author should have on hand. Also, I'm mildly obsessed with Jane Austen... And I don't know want to list the many editions of Pride and Prejudice I own... including a graphic novel version.   


The Complete Works of William Shakespeare


Grimm’s Complete Fairy tales


Edgar Allen Poe Complete Tales and Poems


Jane Eyre


Pride and Prejudice


Sense and Sensibility




Northanger Abbey


Mansfield Park




Dante’s Inferno




The Bible (NIV Version)

Because it’s not a bad idea to have a Bible around. Also, you don’t want to misquote the Bible. 


(I swear I tried to spell every title and author name correctly, but if I made mistakes, please forgive me.)


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