- Paperback: 258 pages
- Publisher: Yearbooks; 1 edition (16 Feb. 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 140815742X
- ISBN-13: 978-1408157428
- Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.1 x 19.7 cm
- Average Customer Review: 21 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 194,534 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Writing: A User Manual Paperback – 16 Feb 2012
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David Hewson's books have been read by millions...So his views on writing a successful novel are well worth listening to...There's a surfeit of ideas and advice, ranging from how to get started through keeping the project alive to delivering the finished manuscript that you must read. * Self-Publishing Magazine *
About the Author
David Hewson is a prolific and talented thriller writer with a large fanbase. He is well regarded by peers and critics, his Italian-based thrillers are published in dozens of languages and the film rights to the entire Nic Costa series (described by Lee Child as `terrific') have now been sold. He is now writing the novel versions of the BAFTA award-winning Danish crime drama The Killing.
Top customer reviews
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Writing: A User Manual is a practical guide to the craft of planning, starting and finishing a novel.
My whole perception of this book is that Hewson genuinely wants to share the benefit of his experience to help you, as a budding author, to write THAT book. It's not a showy 'look how I did it' type of book, or a condescending 'you don't want to do it like that, you want to do like this' type either. It is a pure sharing of knowledge, from the first chapter where he talks through the planning of a novel right through to the last where he discusses how to tell when it's ready to be sent off to an agent or publisher.
The book is divided into 3 parts: Plan, Write, Deliver, and to demonstrate his recommendations throughout the book, Hewson uses a sample story: Charlie and the Mermaid. It begins with the seed of an idea, a paragraph where Charlie might meet a girl, and by the end of this manual there is a full-blown synopsis of the sample story. Hewson takes you through every little step of the way; developing the idea, creating an outline, building the blocks of the novel, identifying flaws, research, writers' tools, revision - you name it, it's all in here from beginning to end.
It's packed with 272 pages of useful information to help tackle that mammoth task by breaking the daunting process up into small chunks. He also includes some best practices for technology he has used for writing and revising, including word processing software and computing equipment.
I read this just after completing my first novel (should have read it beforehand!) but I've learnt a lot from David Hewson through this and will apply the approach to my second novel, which I'm just about to start.
Not only is this a valuable read for anyone aspiring to become a novelist, but there are probably a good few published authors out there who could benefit from reading this as well!
Well, this book has given me hope and encouragement, and shown me to the starting line.
Hewson offers his own take on the writing process, drawing upon his own experience of what has worked for him. In particular, his views on some of the classic rules of writing (adverbs, for example) are more relaxed than some other writing guides might suggest. What's important is the creativity process. Hewson also provides a working example, throughout the book, which clarifies his processes further. It's easy to read, and as a result, I'm now reviewing a project I'm working on.
Although it is divided into clear sections, I would advise reading the book from cover to cover (which due to the chatty, but authoritative style, is easily done).
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