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Why We Write [Paperback]

Meredith Maran
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
RRP: 11.99
Price: 8.69 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

4 July 2013
Twenty of America's bestselling authors share tricks, tips and secrets of the successful writing life. Anyone who's ever sat down to write a novel or even a story knows how exhilarating and heart breaking writing can be. So what makes writers stick with it? In Why We Write, twenty well-known authors candidly share what keeps them going and what they love most and least about their vocation. Includes answers from authors such as Jennifer Egan, Jodi Picoult, David Baldacci, Ann Patchett, Sue Grafton and James Frey.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: PLUME (4 July 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0452298156
  • ISBN-13: 978-0452298156
  • Product Dimensions: 20.2 x 13.4 x 1.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 464,013 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice appetiser 15 Jun 2014
By Hande Z TOP 1000 REVIEWER
This book is a structured account by 20 (American writers - Isabel Allende now lives in California) on the reasons they took to writing as a vocation. Some of the authors are well-known in Britain, but most are better known in America. The editor provided the basic person history of each author (such as his date of birth and best known books). At the end of each account, the author concerned provided some quick and personal tips intended for people who are thinking of writing as a career. Many gems can be found in the pages of this book, but many of the authors will probably impress a British reader as a little too egoistic and self-indulgent; and their advice a little pedantic (Don't write for the publisher; write for yourself).
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3.0 out of 5 stars It's mediocre! 6 Aug 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
An interesting read. It has led me to read other books and not just by the authors featured. I bought it on a very discounted bargain day price and wouldn't have bought it otherwise.
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Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  36 reviews
20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Writer's Salve 31 Jan 2013
By Jennifer K. Gibbons - Published on Amazon.com
As a writer, I have many many many (did I mention many) moments of self doubt and angst about my writing. Reading this collection of interviews done by Meredith Maran is a salve. It reminds me that hey, you're not alone. Jodi Picoult goes through it, Susan Orlean goes through it, but the most important thing is you have to keep writing and keep your inner demons at the door. Wonderful reading and thank you to Net Galley for giving me an advance copy!
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why We Write is a Fine Read 12 Mar 2013
By Eric Joseph - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Whether you’re a wannabe writer taking the plunge, or a first time published writer, or an avid reader curious about the craft, you will love this book. I’m just about half way through it and must say that it is a fantastic read. In my opinion, this book could serve as a companion tome to Stephen King’s On Writing. Here are a few observations about the similarities these authors share:

Almost to a person, many of these writers feel they are in another world when the words flow and they feel they’re writing well.
Many made the comment that at times the characters in their stories often take on a life of their own, as if they were guiding the author’s pen.

As good as many of these scribes are, they still at times suffer from self-doubt, or lack of confidence, and of course practically all of them dread the inevitable bout with block.

Many of them swear to rituals that they feel help them get started; cleaning their studio, ridding the space of any shred of the last work, displaying artifacts that engages their creativity and summons the muse.

Overall, this is a wonderful book for anyone contemplating or already engaged in the writer’s craft. It’s been of tremendous help to me already (mining my first novel), and it was great to see some of the same faults I have shared by professionals. There is much to learn from and a great deal that will give comfort and support to aspiring authors in this book.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You're not alone... 3 Feb 2013
By Susan Sherman - Published on Amazon.com
The good news is I'm not alone. There are other writers, wonderful, prolific and popular writers, who deal with the same demons, doubts and compulsions that I deal with every time I sit down to write. This book is a must read for writers, readers or anyone who has a creative bone in their body. It's the antidote to the heeby jeebies that every writer feels when first setting forth to fill a blank page.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A book for authors by authors 2 Jun 2013
By Amelia - Published on Amazon.com
I recieved an ARC from Netgalley.

To any author, whether you are published or not, the answer to why do you write is simple and these authors are not any different. We write because we have to.

This book takes that answer a step further. They just don't answer 'Because we have to!' They answer "Because I have to..."

It's what comes after the ellipsis that makes this book a must read for aspiring authors. We get an insight into some of the best literary minds. We look up to these authors, we want their success and we want to know their secrets.

The book is nicely broken down so each author gets his or her own chapter. There is a quote from one of thier works and brief background information including the authors vitals. The vitals include information on thier birth, family, schooling, honors and awards, and anything else that might be notable. I liked that it also included a question about a day job. This is followed by contact information and a list of published works.

Then we get the authors words on why they write. We learn interesting tidbits like Isabel Allende has a certain date when she starts writing a book. Jennifer Egan gives insights into winning the Pulitzer. James Frey talks about getting lost (this was personally one of my favorite sections to read). Ann Patchett tells us why she still writes in WordPerfect (I know!) and Jodi Picult talks about movie deals.
These are just a few quick examples of what these authors have to share. Each other also ends thier chapter with some wisdom for writers.

I think Terry McMillan sums it up best "I didn't choose to write. It was something that just happened to me." If you can relate, this book is worth picking up and reading.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved This 30 Oct 2013
By Joanne Harris - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I was not sure reading about a bunch of authors discussing their writing would be entertaining or engaging. I was wrong. It was fascinating and I ate this up like candy. My only regret it that it ended, and I would have kept reading even if every author available today wrote about their craft. I especially enjoyed Jodi Picoult and David Baldacci. I loved how real they all were and how passionate they all are about writing. I am not a writer but an avid reader and I enjoyed this very much.
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