Reference and literary books are important to writers because they provide knowledge across several areas of the discipline like formatting sentences and word choice. I have compiled the literary reference books that I use the most when I need to check something that I am writing. These books have been with me a while, since I was getting my undergraduate degree. I hope that you find these sources useful in your writing.
The Writers Harbrace Handbook was one of the first books that I had to get for my undergraduate English classes. This book has a lot of information in it for writers including writing styles such as MLA and APA. I love the section on grammar which goes over everything from pronouns to comma splices.
A Writers Reference by Diana Hacker is a book that I carry with me when I just need a quick reference. It provides all the things that you would need quick reference for such as document formatting and punctuation. The book even cross references with the book website for furthering your knowledge on a specific subject.
Literary terms are important for all writers to know. How are you going to write a novel or short story without knowing what a foil or a protagonist are? This dictionary of literary terms and literary theory book has all the literary definitions that you will ever need. If you are ever stuck on a particular term, just open this book.
I hope that this post has helped you know what books will be most valuable to you as a writer. They have helped me a lot through the years and I continue to gain knowledge from them.
Happy Reading and Writing,