Scott Peck remains one of my favorite authors (and not just in the self-help category). “The Road Less Traveled” demonstrated the importance, not just of giving good advice, but giving well-written advice. Both he and Dale Carnegie showed great skill in their writing — and thinking — and I keep their books close at all times. I’d also recommend William Zinsser’s “On Writing Well,” a compilation of his lessons taught at Columbia University. While this book is directed at young journalists, it’s full of advice every one of us can use to guide our lives. Just his chapter “The Lead” teaches us how to start any conversation, understanding the importance of what a first sentence means. Check it out.

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I did a poor imitation of Don Draper for 40 years before writing my first novel. I'm currently in the final stages of a children's book. Lucky me.

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