Writing How-to
Featured Items
Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life
Wild Mind
Living the Writer's Life
Paperback      ISBN: 0553347756
Natalie Goldberg, author of the bestselling Writing Down The Bones, teaches a method of writing that can take you beyond craft to the true source of creative power: The mind that is "raw, full of energy, alive and hungry."

Here is compassionate, practical, and often humorous advice about how to find time to write, how to discover your personal style, how to make sentences come alive, and how to overcome procrastination and writer's block--including more than thirty provocative "Try this" exercises to get your pen moving.

And here also is a larger vision of the writer's task: balancing daily responsibilities with a commitment to writing; knowing when to take risks as a writer and a human being; coming to terms with success and failure and loss; and learning self-acceptance--both in life and art.

Wild Mind
will change your way of writing. It may also change your life.
The Devil's Details: A History of Footnotes
The Devil's Details
A History of Footnotes
Paperback      ISBN: 0743241754

Footnotes have not had it easy. Their dominance of eighteenth- and nineteenth- century literature and scholarship was both hard-won -- following many years of struggle -- and doomed, as it led to belittlement in the twentieth century. In The Devil's Details, Chuck Zerby playfully explores footnotes' long and illustrious history and makes a clarion call to save them from the new world of the Internet and hypertext. In a story that boasts a marvelous plot and a rogues' gallery of players, Zerby examines traditional footnotes and their less-buttoned-down incarnations, as when used by pornographers. Yes, The Devil's Details is full of surprises: Zerby hunts down the first bona fide fully functioning footnote; unearths a multivolume history of Northumberland County, England, that uses one volume for a single footnote; and uncovers a murder plot. He even explains why footnotes are like blind dates. Carefully researched and highly opinionated, The Devil's Details affirms that delight in reading can come from unexpected places.

Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life
Bird by Bird
Some Instructions on Writing and Life
Paperback      ISBN: 0385480016
An essential volume for generations of writers young and old, Bird by Bird is a modern classic. This twenty-fifth anniversary edition will continue to spark creative minds for years to come.

For a quarter century, more than a million readers--scribes and scribblers of all ages and abilities--have been inspired by Anne Lamott's hilarious, big-hearted, homespun advice. Advice that begins with the simple words of wisdom passed down from Anne's father--also a writer--in the iconic passage that gives the book its title:

"Thirty years ago my older brother, who was ten years old at the time, was trying to get a report on birds written that he'd had three months to write. It was due the next day. We were out at our family cabin in Bolinas, and he was at the kitchen table close to tears, surrounded by binder paper and pencils and unopened books on birds, immobilized by the hugeness of the task ahead. Then my father sat down beside him, put his arm around my brother's shoulder, and said, 'Bird by bird, buddy. Just take it bird by bird.'"
The Situation and the Story: The Art of Personal Narrative
The Situation and the Story
The Art of Personal Narrative
Paperback      ISBN: 0374528586

A guide to the art of personal writing, by the author of Fierce Attachments and The End of the Novel of Love

All narrative writing must pull from the raw material of life a tale that will shape experience, transform event, deliver a bit of wisdom. In a story or a novel the I who tells this tale can be, and often is, an unreliable narrator but in nonfiction the reader must always be persuaded that the narrator is speaking truth.

How does one pull from one's own boring, agitated self the truth-speaker who will tell the story a personal narrative needs to tell? That is the question The Situation and the Story asks--and answers. Taking us on a reading tour of some of the best memoirs and essays of the past hundred years, Gornick traces the changing idea of self that has dominated the century, and demonstrates the enduring truth-speaker to be found in the work of writers as diverse as Edmund Gosse, Joan Didion, Oscar Wilde, James Baldwin, or Marguerite Duras.

This book, which grew out of fifteen years teaching in MFA programs, is itself a model of the lucid inteligence that has made Gornick one of our most admired writers of ninfiction. In it, she teaches us to write by teaching us how to read: how to recognize truth when we hear it in the writing of others and in our own.
The Art of Fiction: Notes on Craft for Young Writers
The Art of Fiction
Notes on Craft for Young Writers
Paperback      ISBN: 0679734031

This classic guide, from the renowned novelist and professor, has helped transform generations of aspiring writers into masterful writers--and will continue to do so for many years to come.

John Gardner was almost as famous as a teacher of creative writing as he was for his own works. In this practical, instructive handbook, based on the courses and seminars that he gave, he explains, simply and cogently, the principles and techniques of good writing. Gardner's lessons, exemplified with detailed excerpts from classic works of literature, sweep across a complete range of topics--from the nature of aesthetics to the shape of a refined sentence. Written with passion, precision, and a deep respect for the art of writing, Gardner's book serves by turns as a critic, mentor, and friend. Anyone who has ever thought of taking the step from reader to writer should begin here.
The Pocket Muse: Ideas & Inspirations for Writing
The Pocket Muse
Ideas & Inspirations for Writing
Paperback      ISBN: 1582973229

A Whole Lot of Inspiration (in a Little Bit of Space )

The Pocket Muse is your key to finding inspiration when and where you want it. With hundreds of thought-provoking prompts, exercises and illustrations, you'll immediately:

  • Get started writing
  • Overcome writer's block
  • Develop a writing habit
  • Think more creatively
  • Master style, revision and other elements of the craft

The rich variety of exercises will help you to create stories, focus on a single aspect of your writing, and encourage you to think about how and why you write in new and surprising ways.

A truly unique book, The Pocket Muse is fun and effective. It will teach you, cheer you and inspire you to write as never before.

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Writing Poetry
The Complete Idiot's Guide to Writing Poetry
Paperback      ISBN: 0028641418

Discover the poet within You've read poetry that has touched your heart, and you'd like to improve your own writing technique. But even though you have loads of inspiration, you're discovering that good instruction can be as elusive as a good metaphor. The Complete Idiot's Guide to Writing Poetry will help you compose powerful, emotion-packed poems that you can be proud of. You'll learn simple explanations of poetry building blocks such as metaphor, imagery, symbolism and stanzas; steps to the poetic process; easy-to-follow guidelines for writing sonnets, sestinas, narrative poems and more; fun exercises to help you master the basics of poetry writing; cliches and other poetry pitfalls to avoid; advice on writers' conferences and workshops; tips on getting your poetry published; good poems that will inspire your own work; strategies to beat writer's block.

Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within
Writing Down the Bones
Freeing the Writer Within
1st Edition    Paperback      ISBN: 0877733759

Natalie Goldberg's word-of-mouth hit has sold well over half a million copies. Goldberg, who has conducted writing workshops for both beginners and professionals all over the United States, sees writing as a practice that helps us comprehend the value of our lives. With insight, humor, and practicality, she inspires writers and would-be writers alike to take the leap into writing creatively and well.

Writing for a Good Cause: The Complete Guide to Crafting Proposals and Other Persuasive Pieces for Nonprof
Writing for a Good Cause
The Complete Guide to Crafting Proposals and Other Persuasive Pieces for Nonprof
Paperback      ISBN: 0684857405

Filled with tips and survival skills from writers and fund-raising officers at nonprofits of all sizes, Writing for a Good Cause is the first book to explain how to use words well to win your cause the money it needs. Whether you work for a storefront social action agency or a leading university, the authors' knowledgeable, practical advice will help you:

Write the perfect proposal--from the initial research and interviews to the final product

Draft, revise, and polish a "beguiling, exciting, can't-put-it-down and surely can't-turn-it-down" request for funds

Create case statements and other big money materials--also write, design, and print newsletters, and use the World Wide Web effectively

Survive last-minute proposals and other crises--with the Down-and-Dirty Proposal Kit

Writing for a Good Cause provides everything fund raisers, volunteers, staff writers, freelancers, and program directors need to know to win funds from individual, foundation, and corporate donors.
Live Writing: Breathing Life Into Your Words
Live Writing
Breathing Life Into Your Words
Paperback      ISBN: 0380797011

A practical guide for how to make your writing come alive, by the bestselling author of A Writer's Notebook and the ALA Notable Book Fig Pudding.

What is "live writing"? It's the kind of writing that has a current running through it--energy, electricity, juice. This book is a young writer's toolbox for bringing writing to life. But instead of awls and hammers, this toolbox contains words, imagination, a love of books, a sense of story, and ideas for how to make the writing live and breathe.

Perfect for classrooms, Live Writing is full of practical wisdom for young writers, from bestselling writer Ralph Fletcher. Aspiring writers will devour these tips for how to make their words jump off the page