Regular price: $8.37

Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free.
  • 1 credit/month after trial – good for any book, any price.
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love.
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel.
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month.
OR
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

In her 93 remarkable years, veteran freelance writer, memoirist, and writing teacher Brenda Ueland published some six million words. She once said there were two simple rules that she followed absolutely: to tell the truth, and not to do anything she didn't want to do. Such integrity both distinguishes and defines If You Want to Write, her best-selling classic that first appeared in the late 1930s and has inspired thousands to find their own creative center. As Carl Sandburg once remarked, Ueland's primer is "the best book ever written on how to write".
©1938, 1987 Brenda Ueland and the Estate of Brenda Ueland (P)1991, 1998 HighBridge Company

Critic Reviews

"A fresh and viable retelling....[Hunt's] rich prose and cultural details utilize the five senses to recreate the familiar story." (Publishers Weekly)

More from the same

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    139
  • 4 Stars
    31
  • 3 Stars
    14
  • 2 Stars
    7
  • 1 Stars
    3

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    106
  • 4 Stars
    22
  • 3 Stars
    9
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    1

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    100
  • 4 Stars
    18
  • 3 Stars
    15
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    3
Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Ronnie
  • Westmount, Quebec, Canada
  • 04-20-08

The most inspiring book

I have always shyed away from writing, but this book gives one such positive reinforcement as well as great ideas to help you get over any kind of writer's block. I highly recommend it to any aspiring writer.

13 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Inspirational

The narrator is great. Entertaining, informative, and inspirational.

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Thank you life, for the gift of Brenda Ueland

I have her original book, thanks to Anne Lamott's recommendation but now the audible version makes everything complete. I can listen to Brenda's inspiring words whenever I have a minute and they not only change the way I write but the way I live. The narrator is absolutely fantastic. Thank you, thank you.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

A perfect tonic to recharge your writing batteries

I listen to this fabulously narrated classic by Brenda Ueland once a year just to clear my head and re-inspire myself to continue writing. My only complaint is that it is abridged and some of the original gorgeous text is missing. But still listening to this audiobook on a brisk walk brings renewed zest to my writing practice.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Pat Carroll's smooth, authoritative voice

What made the experience of listening to If You Want to Write the most enjoyable?

This voice put to these beautiful, classical, sensitive words - this audio program, in my humble opinion, is simple, short and gorgeous!

What was one of the most memorable moments of If You Want to Write?

Her mentioning that years prior to writing that manifesto, she would have exhaustively looked for scientific proof to back up her words, but then she exclaimed that 'I say it because it is true to me, that it is true and you should have it!' - my favorite part!

Which character – as performed by Pat Carroll – was your favorite?

Pat Carroll voice was perfect for this book.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

Do you!

Any additional comments?

my review for the print version - There are no words...but i'll try. Brenda Ueland has written this manifesto for everyone who has anything in them to share to spur them on. I love the wording, I love the quotes from her favorite people, I love her artists sensibility and that she gets the way a writer's mind works. She was and is (because being that she was a writing teacher, this book screams of her living spirit) THE voice for a writer lost in their own mind, trying to latch on to guidance and do their thing.

I simply love her and this book is why I do.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Need an unabridged version...

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

This book is great - a classic. But this abridged version doesn't do this wonderful book justice. And why abridge it to begin with? It's not a long book. So much wisdom is left out.

Would you be willing to try another book from Brenda Ueland? Why or why not?

Of course - IF it is unabridged!

What about Pat Carroll’s performance did you like?

She read this wonderfully! My complaint is certainly not with her performance - she was great. The whole (audio) book needs to be made available.

Was If You Want to Write worth the listening time?

again, needs to be longer - the whole book.

Any additional comments?

Like I said, this book is such a gem, an unabridged version needs to be available. And with Pat Carroll reading it as well.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Truly Inspirational!

So easy to give up, because of what others say about your work or you're not qualified!
This book from 1938 rings truer today than when written! Thank you for recommending Mary Gauthier!!!!!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Inspiring

I’ve never considered myself a writer or really wanted to write. I picked up this book just because it was short. Now, I can’t wait to start writing anything. If the author wrote it following what is said in the book, then it is a fantastic way of writing. I’m truly inspired.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Hermoso

Es hermosos. La narradora una genia. A veces está mal nivelado y te deja un poco sorda.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Wow.

Holy crap. I don’t write for a living, I haven’t even toyed with the notion of recreational writing...but this book is inspiring. I don’t feel as much that the author is giving advice on writing as on living itself.

This book is a magnificent and inspiring push to express yourself, whatever the result. I love to hear it as I have loved hearing other wise women in my life speak. Speaking of which, the narrator is amazing. I can’t imagine this book separate from her performance; the book and the narration are more than the sum of their parts.

Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone who feels they have strayed from what matters in life. I would recommend it to high school seniors, who still have much to experience, and seasoned adults who need to be refreshed in their everyday lives. It’s a great hour and a half well-spent.