31 of 36 people found the following review helpful
If writing is your burning desire, read this book.,
By A Customer
This review is from: Writing the Novel: From Plot to Print (Paperback)
Lawrence Block, unlike most of those who write writing books, really has been published, does this stuff for a living, and obviously loves the craft.
Also, unlike most of those who write writing books, he doesn't try to tell the reader how to write. He doesn't attempt to impress the would-be writer with elaborate "methods" or "systems" which are worth exactly nothing when a writer is first starting out. Methods and systems which work for one writer inevitably do not work for another. For instance, I do not outline. Some writers (and instructors of writing) would consider this a failing. I do not.
As Block says so eloquently in his book, "The novel is an organic thing."
It's nice to know that I'm not necessarily doing it wrong. In fact, Block lets us know there is no "wrong" way to write one's novel. That's refreshing.
He goes about the business of talking about writing in terms of the easiest way to get the job done and always with the caveat that we writers each come to that business with our own habits, quirks and methods and the trick is to find the best one for each of us. The writer can't depend upon anyone else to find that "first step" in "the journey of a thousand miles" for him or her. It's hard work, and since somebody's got to do it, it might as well be me . . . or you . . . or the neighbor lady down the street with the manuscript hidden in her closet.
A tremendously encouraging and insightful book. I suggest it highly.