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Now Write! Nonfiction: Memoir, Journalism and Creative Nonfiction Exercises from Today's Best Writers [Paperback]

by Sherry Ellis
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)

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Book Description

December 24, 2009 1585427586 978-1585427581
An essential handbook for nonfiction writers, featuring the trusted personal writing exercises of today's masters of creative non-fiction, including Gay Talese, Reza Aslan, John Matteson, Tilar Mazzeo, and many more!

Beginners and seasoned writers alike will relish the opportunity to use the top-notch writing exercises collected in Now Write! Nonfiction culled from the personal stashes of bestselling and critically-acclaimed nonfiction authors like legendary essayist Gay Talese (Thy Neighbor's Wife), New York Times-bestselling authors Ishmael Beah (A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier) Reza Aslan (No God but God: The Origins, Evolution, and Future of Islam), and Tilar Mazzeo (The Widow Clicquot), 2008 Pulitzer Prize-winner John Matteson (Eden's Outcasts: The Story of Louisa May Alcott and Her Father), creative nonfiction icon Lee Gutkind (Creative Nonfiction magazine), and many other top memoirists, journalists, and teachers of creative nonfiction, these exercises offer fresh ideas for every facet of creative nonfiction writing, from pushing through writers block to organizing a story, capturing character to fine-tuning dialogue, injecting new life into a finished piece to starting a new work from scratch.

Now Write! Nonfiction will take you out into the field with creative nonfiction's master practitioners:

*Peek inside Gay Talese's mind, as he shares the "writer's road map" he used to organize information for his classic book Thy Neighbor's Wife and his seminal essay "Frank Sinatra Has a Cold."

*Learn from Reza Aslan why what you remember isn't as important as why you remember it the way you do

*Explore the importance of cultural nuance in language with Ishmael Beah

*Discover Lee Gutkind's simple trick, performed with a highlighter, that can help any writer identify whether their piece is truly showing action, or just telling

An essential resource that will help writers of any level to hone their craft and get writing, Now WRite! Nonfiction offers over 80 quick, simple excersises trusted by top nonfiction writers to get their pen moving!

Frequently Bought Together

Now Write! Nonfiction: Memoir, Journalism and Creative Nonfiction Exercises from Today's Best Writers + Now Write!: Fiction Writing Exercises from Today's Best Writers and Teachers + Now Write! Screenwriting: Screenwriting Exercises from Today's Best Writers and Teachers (Now Write! Writing Guide Series)
Price for all three: $36.39

Some of these items ship sooner than the others.

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Sherry Ellis is the editor of NOW WRITE! Fiction Writing Exercises from Today's Best Writers and Teachers and NOW WRITE! NONFICTION, as well as a personal writing coach. Her author interviews have appeared in the Kenyon Review, The Writer’s Chronicle, Glimmer Train, and AGNI, as well as other literary and arts magazines. She lives in Massachusetts.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Tarcher (December 24, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1585427586
  • ISBN-13: 978-1585427581
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.5 x 1.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #40,046 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author


Sherry Ellis is the author of Illuminating Fiction, Now Write! Nonfiction and Now Write! Fiction. She became interested in examining the writing process when she was working on her first novel and found herself turning to respected writing teachers for their expertise. Determined to discover more, Sherry interviewed these authors as well as other esteemed writers, and then asked them to contribute writing exercises that had helped them as well as their students. The result is this amazing series of Now Write! books, a series that will inspire writers of all levels and genres. Sherry Ellis is currently working on Now Write! Screenwriting! while continuing her own creative work.

Now Write!, is the first in the series of writing exercise books. It focuses on the art of fiction and includes writing exercises by Steve Almond, Robert Olen Butler, Amy Bloom, Jill McCorkle, Alison Lurie, Jayne Anne Phillips, Virgil Suarez and many more authors. Now Write! was selected as one of the best writing books of the year by The Writer magazine, and it was a selection of the Writer's Digest Book Club.

Ellis' second book of writing exercises, Now Write! Nonfiction: Memoir, Journalism and Creative Nonfiction Exercises from Today's Best Writers and Teachers, focuses on the art of non-fiction. It includes contributions from Gay Talese, Ishmael Beah, Reza Aslan, John Matteson, Tilar Mazzeo and Lee Gutkind.

Ellis' book of author interviews, Illuminating Fiction, includes interviews with Arthur Golden, Edward P. Jones (winner of the Pulitzer Prize), Julia Glass (winner of the National Book Award), Jill McCorkle, Ron Carlson, and Margot Livesey. Several of the interviews were initially published in literary magazines. Ellis' interview with Julia Glass received Honorable Mention by New Millennium Writings.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One GREAT Book!!!! January 13, 2010
Wonderfully organized/edited by Ms. Ellis and truly inspirational. Each person will find something for him/herself within the writing exercises. Each exercise stands on its own so one can pick and choose or read cover to cover--either way, it will get the creative juices flowing. Two of my personal favorites were Nestor's "Make Your Own White Album" involving a series of mini-essays and Singer's "Landscape and Memory", appealing to my own quirky, rock n' roll past experiences and love of nature and serenity, respectively. The breadth and depth of the writing exercises are truly awe-inspiring. It should be required text for every aspiring creative non-fiction writer. HIGHLY RECOMMEND.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A master class in nonfiction September 30, 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book's setup is very simple: a bunch of different professional nonfiction writers, each submitting an exercise and a blurb about the specific feature they're highlighting, everything from creating a sense of place, wrestling with the truth to revision and outlining--pretty much every facet of the craft.

The exercises are pure gold. I've used the "create your own White Album" with incredible success in classes I teach, and it is an invaluable resource for writing teachers. Teaching essay of place, this book offers a number of exercises I can use or tweak to connect with my assignment.

Even for non-writing-teachers, this book is a goldmine of inspiration, springboards and craft. The exercises are self-explanatory, isolated enough that you are almost invited to jump around, pick and choose, experiment and play.

If you write, at all, this book belongs on your shelf.
No, not on your shelf, I'm sorry. It belongs, well thumbed, on your desk.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Sherry Ellis' "NOW WRITE!" is very simply the tool I have long needed to explain and teach me the CRAFT of authoring a book. Talented master authors such as best-selling author Gay Talese, and Pulitzer prize winner John Matteson, explain the ART of writing a book.
Both of Ms Ellis' "WRITE NOW!",books have bolstered my knowledge and confidence. I am now writing with immensly renewed vigor with visions of success!. THUMBS UP!!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Now write Nonfiction February 19, 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
If you need some incentive to write, this book is great. It gives you tips from many different nonfiction writers. There are exercises to complete. It's great for sparking your imagination.
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