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Still Writing: The Perils and Pleasures of a Creative Life Paperback – 12 August 2014
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About the Author
- Publisher : Grove Press (12 August 2014)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 240 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0802121411
- ISBN-13 : 978-0802121417
- Dimensions : 12.45 x 2.03 x 18.29 cm
- Best Sellers Rank: 197,603 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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There are some excellent writing tips and advice, along with an honest account of a writer's life. She doesn't sugarcoat what it takes to be a writer, and to finish a book, which, she says, takes discipline, commitment "to sit down every day and write", and being antisocial "to protect my writing life."
The book is in three sections: Beginnings, Middles, Ends and these provide the theme for the short chapters in the sections. Along with the writing tips and advice, she talks about how she writes, how she copes with life's distractions by having a writing routine, how letting creative inspiration lead her rather than the critic on her shoulder.
What resonated with me the most was how she doesn't use outlines but let's inspiration guide her and lets the characters surprise her and lead her in unexpected ways. "The imagination has its own coherence. Our first draft will lead us. There's always time for thinking and shaping and restructuring later, after we've allowed something previously hidden to emerge on the page."
I love reading books on writing by writers and this is one of my favourites along with Elizabeth Gilbert's Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear and Julia Cameron's The Artist's Way: A Course in Discovering and Recovering Your Creative Self All these books say that if you want to write then write. You don't need long stretches of time to write - "sometimes we're better off with just enough time. Or even not enough time." But if you want and feel the burning desire to write then just do it - not for glory or fortune but because you need to.