The Columbia Journalism Review has a reading list for aspiring journalists, recommended by writers, journalists and acdemics. Of the 48 titles, I have read two – On Writing by Stephen King and the second volume of George Orwell’s collected essays. As one of the commentators suggests, this is rather “high falutin” list, with some pretty aspirational choices.
My own suggestions would be:
Scoop by Evelyn Waugh – A mix-up over names sees The Daily Beast’s nature notes contributor sent to cover a war in Africa, where he bumbles his way to a huge scoop. Laughs galore. but a frighteningly accurate portrayal of journalism
Essential English for Journalists, Editors and Writers by Harold Evans – Everything you need to know about writing for newspapers, by one of the masters
What is the What by Dave Eggers – one of the best books I ever read while I was in Africa. Gets under the skin of the place in a way that few journalists can. This is how to tell a story
I’ll be trying to go through the CJR selection. But I can’t help but think it is crammed with books that would go on my shelves but remain unread.
Any other suggestions?