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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Wonderful
First published in 1953 'A Writer's Diary' is a collection of extracts from Virginia Woolf's complete diaries, selected by her husband, Leonard. It seems very strange nowadays, but when 'A Writer's Diary' was first published, Virginia Woolf's reputation as a writer was at a low ebb and Leonard, with the wish to restore his wife's standing as a serious writer of some...
Published 24 months ago by Susie B

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars spinsterish diary
an exhausting reading having to hold the book for so long as it is not an easy read and when you have read you wonder why you bothered. There is no life there and really my dears what can on do with the servants
Published 7 months ago by J. P. Metcalf


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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Wonderful, 29 July 2012
By 
Susie B - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
First published in 1953 'A Writer's Diary' is a collection of extracts from Virginia Woolf's complete diaries, selected by her husband, Leonard. It seems very strange nowadays, but when 'A Writer's Diary' was first published, Virginia Woolf's reputation as a writer was at a low ebb and Leonard, with the wish to restore his wife's standing as a serious writer of some calibre, took upon himself the task of distilling the full diaries - where Virginia recorded the details of her day-to-day life and of the people around her, along with her thoughts on the books she was writing and those she intended to write - by selecting those entries which he believed would display her intellectual and literary talents to best effect. And in that, Leonard Woolf has certainly achieved his aim.

'A Writer's Diary' opens with extracts from 1918 and closes with entries made just before Woolf's death in 1941 and in these entries we read of Virginia's discussions on Christina Rossetti, Byron, Conrad, Thomas Hardy, E.M Forster, Arnold Bennett and James Joyce, to name just a few. And of course, we also meet those people who were close to her including: Virginia's sister, the painter, Vanessa Bell; Lytton Strachey; Dora Carrington; Maynard Keynes; Roger Fry; Vita Sackville West, and I could go on; in fact the whole of Bloomsbury is within the covers of this book. We read of Virginia's disappointment when she gets a bad review and of her flashes of jealousy at the amount of attention Lytton Strachey attracts with his writing; but what is most important is that this book shows the writer in the act of writing, in the act of creating her writing and also in her despair at her lack of creativity at times. This is a wonderful book that I dip in and out of all the time and I have more than one copy - if it was on Kindle, I would download it onto my Kindle too. A book to keep by you, to inspire you and offer you endless interest and enjoyment. Highly recommended.

5 Stars.

Please note: One of my copies is the Harvest edition shown here, which I notice is not available directly from Amazon but is obtainable from Amazon Marketplace. This diary is also now available in a new edition from Persephone Books which is, I believe, more readily available. I shall post this review under that edition also.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hope and fuel for the writer's fire!, 14 Mar 2011
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A lovingly edited collection of diary entries which capture Wolf's emotional desire to write 'something good'. which shines 'as bright as diamonds'. The book focuses on the process of writing, it is a reminder to writers that they are not alone when they feel that their work is in vain. Some critics might state that the highs and lows of Wolf stream of conciousness is tiring to read but this is her personal account, which I feel provides an interesting insight into her life. Her entries paint such vivid pictures, I feel so sad that she did not get to see how much her work is truely valued. Frustrating, vivid but some what reassuring read.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must for Writers, 9 July 2011
I studied Virginia Woolf many years ago in school, and recently purchased this book. Reading the diaries makes me want to go back and reread her work. They offer a lot of insight into her books, and for writers they provide a great perspective on how to receive criticism, how to tap into the flow of a book, and some great day-to-day advice on the life of a writer.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Wonderful, 29 July 2012
By 
Susie B - See all my reviews
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: A Writer's Diary (Paperback)
First published in 1953 'A Writer's Diary' is a collection of extracts from Virginia Woolf's complete diaries, selected by her husband, Leonard. It seems very strange nowadays, but when 'A Writer's Diary' was first published, Virginia Woolf's reputation as a writer was at a low ebb and Leonard, with the wish to restore his wife's standing as a serious writer of some calibre, took upon himself the task of distilling the full diaries - where Virginia recorded the details of her day-to-day life and of the people around her, along with her thoughts on the books she was writing and those she intended to write - by selecting those entries which he believed would display her intellectual and literary talents to best effect. And in that, Leonard Woolf has certainly achieved his aim.

'A Writer's Diary' opens with extracts from 1918 and closes with entries made just before Woolf's death in 1941 and in these entries we read of Virginia's discussions on Christina Rossetti, Byron, Conrad, Thomas Hardy, E.M Forster, Arnold Bennett and James Joyce, to name just a few. And of course, we also meet those people who were close to her including: Virginia's sister, the painter, Vanessa Bell; Lytton Strachey; Dora Carrington; Maynard Keynes; Roger Fry; Vita Sackville West, and I could go on; in fact the whole of Bloomsbury is within the covers of this book. We read of Virginia's disappointment when she gets a bad review and of her flashes of jealousy at the amount of attention Lytton Strachey attracts with his writing; but what is most important is that this book shows the writer in the act of writing, in the act of creating her writing and also in her despair at her lack of creativity at times. This is a wonderful book that I dip in and out of all the time and I have more than one copy - if it was on Kindle, I would download it onto my Kindle too. A book to keep by you, to inspire you and offer you endless interest and enjoyment. Highly recommended.

5 Stars.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Writer's Diary, 10 Jan 2014
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This is the shorter version edited by Leonard Woolf after the writer's death but it still gives a great insight into how she worked and what inspired her books. She was something of a workaholic and during her well periods she kept up quite a strict daily writing routine and she often planned her writing a year ahead. She was very focused and ambitious and she always strove to push the boundaries of modern literature
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars spinsterish diary, 12 Dec 2013
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J. P. Metcalf "jmetrodorus" (Norwich) - See all my reviews
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an exhausting reading having to hold the book for so long as it is not an easy read and when you have read you wonder why you bothered. There is no life there and really my dears what can on do with the servants
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9 of 34 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ms Woolf, 25 Aug 2009
Yes, well, I thought I should read this because it is about up-market literature, the Bloomsbury group and all that, and like Rita, I do need educating. I scribble a bit myself, journals/dairies/short jottings, but am not published.
I allowed myself to let go whilst reading this - always a good idea when reading authors with the stream of consciousness approach, and it was interesting in parts, like the curate's egg, but more from an historical point of view. Afraid to say I still cant get my head round her novels, many of which are mentioned in this diary. Watching the films Mrs Dalloway and Orlando have helped but I really do need a Virginia Woolf tutor, please. Glad I read it though.
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A Writer's Diary: Being Extracts from the Diary of Virginia Woolf
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