#ThrowbackThursdayBookstagram: On Writing

One of the reasons I put up a #ThrowbackThursdayBookstagram feature from time to time is that it reminds me of the books I’ve read. Of course, I could never forget that I read ON WRITING by Stephen King, since it’s one of the books many writers and teachers of writing suggest to any aspiring writer.

I was late to reading this book (though I’ve been a fan of King’s for years): I had too many other tasks to do when my kids were small, really. But I’m glad I did. Though writing is a very personal endeavor, and many folks have unique approaches and habits, commonalities exist, and there is a craft to writing that writers need to learn. On Writing helps with that.

“Part memoir, part master class by one of the bestselling authors of all time, this superb volume is a revealing and practical view of the writer’s craft, comprising the basic tools of the trade every writer must have. King’s advice is grounded in his vivid memories from childhood through his emergence as a writer, from his struggling early career to his widely reported, near-fatal accident in 1999—and how the inextricable link between writing and living spurred his recovery. Brilliantly structured, friendly and inspiring, On Writing will empower and entertain everyone who reads it—fans, writers, and anyone who loves a great story well told.”

For those who might have trouble slogging through books they determine “too academic,” the nature of this book—part memoir, part craft—keeps it from feeling too heavy. And truthfully, though King definitely hooked me back when I was a teenager with titles like Misery, Different Seasons (story collection that included the novella Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption), and The Dead Zone, I think that On Writing is one of my favorites of his. It inspired me to keep going, even when I thought maybe I shouldn’t.

No book is for everyone, and On Writing falls into that camp (lots of detractors exist), but if you’re the sort who can pick and choose which advice works well for you, I’d suggest you give this book a try. You just might change your life.

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