The market on writing guides is flush with books intended to aid writers in how to write, publish and promote their work. Each one has a different focus and each will benefit a writer in different ways.
Linda A. Lavid is an award-winning author who teaches several classes on novel and short story fiction writing. She has now written Composition: A Fiction Writer's Guide for the 21st Century, a guide for writers who already have all the pieces but just need some help putting the puzzle together.
At a scant 83 pages, Composition is a bare-bones guide on the absolute essentials of publishing in a new century, including chapters on setting a story goal, developing plot, creating scenes, developing characters, and the all-important process of rewriting.
The second half of the book expounds on publishing a book, including choosing between self-publishing or working with agents and publishers. Lavid just lays out the options; it is up to the writer to make the decision that best fits their own situation and desires.
Lavid has a pleasant, humorous tone that probably draws naturally from her teaching experiences. Composition could simple be one or two of her course lectures written down for posterity. Her writing is conversational and straightforward, with easy prose that focuses on simple content and simple advice. A nice little book for any potential writers who just do not know how to get started.