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Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within Audiobook

Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within

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Publisher's Summary

What is writing? Can anybody do it? What's the best way to get started? And keep going? Over a decade ago, when Writing Down the Bones first appeared, Natalie Goldberg started a revolution in the way we practice writing. Instead of looking at writing as something open only to a few, she made it available to everybody. Her simple, ingenious exercises set free a generation of writers waiting to experience the inner and outer pleasures only writing can provide. Now, for the first time, Goldberg reads her classic work, while offering new commentary about the creative, spiritual, and practical dimensions of writing. This collector's edition also includes an exclusive interview with the author.

©1999 Natalie Goldberg; (P) Sounds True

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.7 (209 )
5 star
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3.3 (75 )
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  •  
    prop0017 05-15-16
    prop0017 05-15-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Poor audio quality: static and muffled"

    The author's voice is incredibly muffled and the quality is static. It seemed like corners were cut for whatever reasons.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary LONG BEACH, CA, United States 07-09-12
    Mary LONG BEACH, CA, United States 07-09-12
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    "This is a must-read for any writer."
    Would you listen to Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within again? Why?

    Yes because she has a spiritual approach to writing and has learned to make her writing her meditation. I especially recommend it to anyone with writer's block.


    Would you recommend Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within to your friends? Why or why not?

    Yes, I have many meditator friends who would appreciate this integration of buddhist meditation and writing.


    Did Natalie Goldberg do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

    Yes because in this special audio edition she's reading it 20 years after writing it and as a bonus, offers her personal updated reflections looking back on her own work.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No. It's dense in it's content so it need reflection to "digest" it. And there are writing exercises.


    Any additional comments?

    Natalie has a funny "Jewish Mom" sort of character that makes it all the more enjoyable. The only drawback is the clarity of the recording, but it's not a hindrance.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pam F Forest, VA, United States 02-11-12
    Pam F Forest, VA, United States 02-11-12 Member Since 2014
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    ""Poor sound quality, snooze-inducing narration.""
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    I'm glad I've also got the print edition because I'm not sure if I can get through this book on audio. First, the recording sounds like the microphone was under a blanket. Muffled.

    Second, the author/narrator has no zest or pizzazz in her voice. Because of the subject, it is like listening to your grandmother read a cookbook or from the telephone book. Zzzzzzz. Except for a very VERY few high points.

    I've always enjoyed writing. Began journaling as a pre-teen, and have blogged, etc. on and off since then. I've wanted to put my own story to paper for a few years now. I remember listening to this book years ago (on cassette tape).

    Third, I'd forgotten how very anti-inspiring it is. Her method in a nutshell: You must spend years just writing, writing, writing. Filling notebooks with words, by hand, be it trash or treasure, before you can hope to be a


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Rochester, NY, United States 01-20-12
    Amazon Customer Rochester, NY, United States 01-20-12 Member Since 2014
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    "Essential for Seekers of All Kinds"

    Goldberg liberates us. I bought the paperback years ago as a writer's guide and found it important and inspirational. I downloaded the Audible edition when I heard some journalists on a podcast say that they listened to a little Natalie whenever they got stuck. Thus, I rediscovered Goldberg not only as a writing coach but also as a spiritual guide. Putting pen to paper can be a spiritual practice as much as a literary one. And the short chapters provide assignments to keep you at it.

    I was delighted with Natalie's narration. At the end of each chapter, she gives an informal comment, based on the 30 years of distance since she originally wrote the book. She is funny and wise.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pamela Reisterstown, MD, United States 12-06-11
    Pamela Reisterstown, MD, United States 12-06-11 Member Since 2014

    Love to ride (motorcycle), be outside, travel, cook for friends, read, drink coffee.

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    "Poor sound quality, snooze-inducing narration."

    I'm glad I've also got the print edition because I'm not sure if I can get through this book on audio. First, the recording sounds like the microphone was under a blanket. Muffled.

    Second, the author/narrator has no zest or pizzazz in her voice. Because of the subject, it is like listening to your grandmother read a cookbook or from the telephone book. Zzzzzzz. Except for a very VERY few high points.

    I've always enjoyed writing. Began journaling as a pre-teen, and have blogged, etc. on and off since then. I've wanted to put my own story to paper for a few years now. I remember listening to this book years ago (on cassette tape).

    Third, I'd forgotten how very anit-inspiring it is. Her method in a nutshell: You must spend years just writing, writing, writing. Filling notebooks with words, by hand, be it trash or treasure, before you can hope to be a "good" writer.

    I'm sure I'll glean something useful from the print copy I've got, but I'm not likely to listen to the whole recording.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pearly Girl New England 02-08-11
    Pearly Girl New England 02-08-11 Member Since 2009
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    "Love the Content, Hate the Narration"

    Great, practical advise if you're a writer, real nuts and bolts. The author narrates though, and her narration is monotonous and irritating. Sound quality is also poor. I'm less than 25% of the way through and heartily wish I had bought it in print. Listen to the sample before purchasing to help determine if the content more than makes up for the bad narration.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lynn Omaha, NE, United States 01-18-11
    Lynn Omaha, NE, United States 01-18-11
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    "Writing Down the Bones"

    Writing Down the Bones is not just another book on how to write. Goldberg dives deep and inspires the reader to find their authentic self in a writing practice. She moves the reader in an inspirational dance that will leave you with tools and insight that will help develop the writer within and produce results. Goldberg brings the book to life and you feel like you are present in her writing workshops. I refer to it often and find I enjoy her stories as much as her teaching of the practice. It is nothing less than a 5 star book!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carol Apple Suffolk, Virginia United States 10-22-10
    Carol Apple Suffolk, Virginia United States 10-22-10 Member Since 2005
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    "This book is like an old friend"

    I read this book around 20 years ago and some of the writing principles I learned from it have stuck with me through the years. Since I am currently doing a sort of personal survey of many books on writing, I thought I would reacquaint myself with the first book on creative writing I ever read. I was not disappointed with this audio edition.

    Generally, I prefer the author not be the reader of his or her own audio book - the professional readers pleasanter listening. Therefore, I was a little dismayed at first to find out Natalie would be reading her own book. In this case, I was pleasantly surprised. It did not take me long to get used to her voice and it turned out to be fitting, pleasant, and warmly sincere. As a neat bonus, Natalie includes an updated commentary on each chapter as an older woman looking back at her younger self. She confirms the techniques that are still valuable, and talks about how her ideas have played out over the years in her own writing.

    As a student and practitioner of Buddhism, Natalie's central idea is writing as a meditative practice. She gently explains how to use writing practice tap into our personal resources to find out what we really want to say. The focus of the book is really how to get the writing process going in your life and how to keep it going, but she also talks about how to keep our writing from moldering in a pile of notebooks and getting out there to be read. Refreshingly, she keeps the art and practice of writing separate from technology: her tools are her mind, her experiences, and her pens and notebooks. I found this book inspiring the first time I read it and it continues to be a source of encouragement and inspiration for my own writing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Franklin Easley, SC, USA 04-08-10
    Franklin Easley, SC, USA 04-08-10
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    "Some good advice, but not much"

    She displays a lack of regard for the time and attention of the reader by including too many mundane thoughts.
    The stories she uses as examples are boring and conveyed in a monotone voice.
    I found some of the information helpful, but consider her advice best suited for people who write for a hobby and not for a living.
    She spends a good bit of time on meditation and such. If you need a book on how to meditate, choose another. This book is more likely to put you into a deep sleep.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Paul Highland Park, IL, USA 12-25-07
    Paul Highland Park, IL, USA 12-25-07
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    "Inspiration to write"

    Highly recommended for people who want to write, but who are suffering from crises of self-confidence. The author's approach is practical and inspiring, esp. if you feel like you've got a bad case of writer's block. Very down to earth narration.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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