I recently bought a few books on writing in the hopes that they would magically transform me into a fantastic novelist. The first one that showed up at my house was this, “How to Write Science Fiction & Fantasy,” by Orson Scott Card.
Even though it says “& Fantasy,” it really concentrates on the Sci-Fi portion of things. The only part where it deals with a fantasy specific topic is when Card talks about setting up a system for magic that makes sense.
One part that I really enjoyed was the discussion on tailoring your work to be a specific “story type.”
He stresses lots of reading and not being afraid to experiment upon common themes.
All in all, it’s worth a read, but I didn’t find this book to be as useful as his book on Characters and Viewpoint.