Hearing this unique combination of anecdotes and insider's advice told in King's charmingly nasal voice makes an already insightful narrative even more personal and powerful. If you want to write, this audiobook will quickly become a treasured resource, because it will improve your writing. But even if you have no interest whatsoever in writing, King's anecdotes and instructions into the art and process will probably make you a better, more informed reader.
On Writing begins with a mesmerizing account of King's childhood and his early focus on writing to tell a story. A series of vivid memories from adolescence, college, and the struggling years that led up to his first novel, Carrie, offer a fresh and often funny perspective on the formation of a writer. King then turns to the tools of his trade, examining crucial aspects of the writer's art and life, offering practical and inspiring advice on everything from plot and character development to work habits and rejection.
King was in the middle of writing this book when he was nearly killed in a widely reported accident. On Writing culminates with a profoundly moving account of how his need to write spurred him toward recovery, and brought him back to his life.
©2000 Stephen King, All Rights Reserved; (P)2000 Simon & Schuster, Inc.
"Spunky, vivid prose are the prime ingredients of what must be considered not at all the usual writer's guide." (Booklist)
"On Writing contains some of the most harrowing pages he has ever written." (Salon.com)
"These rare glimpses into King's personal life - as related in his earnest tone and real (thank God) Maine accent - are fascinating.... If you write - or want to - get this book." (AudioFile)
I have a very extensive audio library, and this book easily ranks in the top five.
I didn't know what to expect- I bought it based on the five-star reviews of other audible listeners. I found it inspiring and meaningful. The book helped me pinpoint differences between excellent writing and mediocre, wordy crap.
Mr. King was honest and direct, and he delivered his message(s) with unexpected personal humility, compassion and self-effacing humor.
I laughed out loud on occasion, and felt transported to another life. When I was finished listening, I picked up a physical book for the first time in 2 years, and devoted time to sit quietly and flip real pages. It made me feel that same wonder that I did when I was a little girl, reading to explore new worlds.
I've both read and listened to a few Steven King stories, and have never felt a strong connection until I listened to this book. He's a very inspiring, humble speaker, and I hope he writes more autobiographical material in the future, or narrates some of his other novels. I will definitely be reading more of his work in the future.
As King mentions in the book, there isn't a magical formula that will help your writing other than reading and writing every day. That doesn't stop this book from being enjoyable and full of insight. Sometimes it's difficult to tell where his life stories are going and how they relate to being a writer but it was an enjoyable listen.
I thought his nasally voice would get old quick but I got used to it and eventually it was almost soothing. Recommended for any writer.
The biographical content here is actually quite good. When it comes to advice on the method of writing, you're probably best served by letting it inform your thought process, rather than use it as a template. Hopefully King's biases show through and you can discern them from the real meat of the discussion he's putting forward.
I was literally, yep me, a crusty old Sergeant First Class, in tears as Steven King told me it was okay to write the way I wanted to write. He went so far as to call plotters dullards! I don't even know if I'm spelling that right, I've never used the word before but now I'm shouting it. Shouting it at my former teachers! You're Dullards!! And I'm free!!
Interesting stories about who Stephen King is. I wanted more technical writing tips. I never wanted to read a book he wrote. This was recommended reading from a speaking mentor.
All the stuff you need to know about writing are compressed in the final chapters, but it's not the type of manual that will enable you to retread the usual pablum that the industry craves. The takeaway seems to be to read a lot and write every day.
I have been reading biographies lately, mostly autobiographies. This one is half autobiography and half inspirational.
Upon thinking of Stephen King, you would expect this book on writing to be about how he creates such gruesome fiction. However it is not like that. You'd think he had somewhat of a demented childhood, one filled with satanistic activities. But it's not like that. Instead, he gives you his life story and his best words for why he continues to write. He has lived an average life, except for some childhood ear problems and adulthood addictions.
He explains that when he writes, he creates characters and it's these characters who take in life and create the story themselves. He just provided a situation. He loves this process. It is almost like a science experiment. It's what keeps him going.
I am not a writer, but the way he talks about it, I feel like I could be one. I feel like I want to create a 'What if...?' Situation and characters with personalities and a story that needs to be told through them.
The autobiographical part is always my favorite. It is the first part of the book; an introduction to the author, if you will. He talks about his life, childhood to the start of his career. He talks about writing, but he also talks about his love life, his kids, his struggles with finances and his struggles with his first book, Carrie.
I highly enjoyed this book.
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