In Advice to Writers, Jon Winokur, author of the bestselling The Portable Curmudgeon, gathers the counsel of more than four hundred celebrated authors in a treasury on the world of writing. Here are literary lions on everything from the passive voice to promotion and publicity: James Baldwin on the practiced illusion of effortless prose, Isaac Asimov on the despotic tendencies of editors, John Cheever on the perils of drink, Ivan Turgenev on matrimony and the Muse. Here, too, are the secrets behind the sleight-of-hand practiced by artists from Aristotle to Rita Mae Brown. Sagacious, inspiring, and entertaining, Advice to Writers is an essential volume for the writer in every reader.
MY RATING: 3 STARS
I’m glad I finally got around to reading this (that seems to be a pattern this year, doesn’t it?). I picked it up well over a year ago hoping for a few new pointers, and forgot all about it. *sigh* What are you going to do with yourself, girl?
Being nothing but quotes, it read super easy and had the advantage of being funny and informative. I learned a few new tricks of the trade, you might say, and had a good laugh while I was at it. Just about every aspect of writing is covered, and presented where each opinion contradicted each other and thus proving that the art of writing itself is a mystery; what works for some just doesn’t do it for others. It was a lot of fun to ponder every bit of advice and occasionally run across something that literally made me start jabbing the page with my finger saying I KNEW IT!! Its greatest value, for me, was inspiring the necessary hunger and passion to write. The more I read other people talking about writing, the more I wanted to hurry off and do some writing of my own. Priceless!
An interesting read, for writers and book lovers in general. I think I’ll hang onto this one.