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On Writing Audiobook

On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft

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Audible Editor Reviews

To begin with, you've got Stephen King, a writer so talented in the art of thrill-generation that he could insert excitement into the assembly instructions for a bookshelf. Or, say, a book about writing and grammar. And that's precisely what King does in On Writing, an improbably fascinating, relentlessly compelling trip through the mind, style, life, and work of one of our greatest popular writers.

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.

Publisher's Summary

"If you don't have the time to read, you don't have the time or the tools to write." Here is Stephen King's master class on his craft.

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.

What the Critics Say

"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)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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  •  
    Deahnara Regan 02-27-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Thank you, Mr. King!"
    Where does On Writing rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I have a very extensive audio library, and this book easily ranks in the top five.


    What did you like best about this story?

    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.


    What about Stephen King’s performance did you like?

    Mr. King was honest and direct, and he delivered his message(s) with unexpected personal humility, compassion and self-effacing humor.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    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.


    Any additional comments?

    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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Felipe D. Machado Los Angeles 02-27-16
    Felipe D. Machado Los Angeles 02-27-16 Member Since 2015
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    "There's no magic potion"

    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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Krista Allen 02-21-16
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    "More than I ever expected. Amazing."

    I have a new found respect and admiration for Stephen King. If I never became a writer, I would still never forget this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tim Valenta AZ, USA 02-18-16
    Tim Valenta AZ, USA 02-18-16 Member Since 2012

    Tim

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    "Hard to treat as gospel, but a good thinking tool"

    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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    DesmoProfundis 02-13-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Set me free"

    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!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Denise Reed 02-07-16
    Denise Reed 02-07-16 Member Since 2013
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    "Blah, blah...write!"

    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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jonathan Nordland Montréal 02-02-16
    Jonathan Nordland Montréal 02-02-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Not "Save the Cat""

    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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alex 01-31-16
    Alex 01-31-16 Member Since 2011
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    "Exceptional!"

    Humorous and inspiring, full of truth and wisdom as well as small tips and anecdotes. A real treat from start to finish, especially in King's own voice.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Sara 01-21-16
    Sara 01-21-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Entertaining and insightful"

    And entertaining glimpse into Stephen King's life the way he writes and how you can be better at this craft

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jess Washington State, USA 01-16-16
    Jess Washington State, USA 01-16-16 Member Since 2014
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    "Built to Inspire"

    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.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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