Monday, October 27, 2008

On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft

by Stephen King
Pocket Books, 2000

The New York Times bestseller, this book is truly both a memoir and a how-to for writers. The middle section, "What Writing Is", is about 150 pages of pithy advice that can benefit writers of any genre. This is bookended by a series of forewords and instructive autobiographical material that help the reader understand King's attraction to the horrific.

A fascinating read, I have already begun to apply some of the tips provided, including the admonition to "kill your darlings". Not to worry, this merely means getting rid of anything that doesn't move the story forward. Having just killed 913 words of my latest piece, I can tell you that a lot of chopping is easily done.

A great Christmas gift for the writer in your life, even if she wouldn't typically read Stephen King.

4 comments:

Kimber said...

I read this a few years ago and liked it. Of course, I can't remember a darned thing about it now! *sigh*

Killing your darling sounds very Halloweenish.

Susan said...

Yes, I thought it was an apt post for today :)

Diane Girard said...

Yes, I've read it too and found it helpful.

Nicole Basaraba said...

I also thought it was a fascinating read and to learn about King's attraction to horror.