If you are familiar with Orson Scott Card's Hatrack River site, you know that there is nobody in the field of science fiction and fantasy who is more committed to helping new writers. If that is news to you then certainly his resume as a writer is well known to any one interested in writing in this field. This is one of the thinner books on writing you are going to fine and that is because Uncle Orson is extremely focused in explaining his craft. Consequently, there are but five sections to this volume in The Writer's Digest Genre Writing Series. (1) The Infinite Boundary looks at the spectrum covered by science fiction and fantasy with some attention to the distictions between the two as well. (2) World Creation details how to build, populate and dramatize your new world, including working out all the necessary elements such as history, language, geography and customs. (3) Story Construction deals with finding the right character for an idea or the right idea for a character (and do not forget about "the MICE quotient"). (4) Writing Well is a collection of fundamental tips, otherwise known as the "don't do this at home" section. (5) The Life and Business of Writing deals both generally with the business but also the specifics of science fiction and fantasy. I find his use of examples, especially when he lays out a series of variations on a theme, to be helpful because they demonstrate in practice what his theoretical points and show how many additional ideas each idea generates. Perhaps most importantly, Uncle Orson is having a conversation with you; he is neither lecturing nor pontificating. His non-fiction is as readily as his award-winning fiction, and that should come as a surprise to no one. There are other books better suited to getting into the nuts and bolts of constructing brave new worlds, but I have yet to find a better book at covering the basics than this one.