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The Art & Craft of Story: 2nd Practitioner's Manual Paperback – September 30, 2011
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Opinionated, rumbunctious, sharp and always entertaining, Mixon is a brilliant and ferocious companion. These are lessons of a writing lifetime. --Roz Morris, best selling ghostwriter and author of Nail Your Novel: Why Writers Abandon Novels and How You Can Draft, Fix and Finish With Confidence
About the Author
More About the Author
She is the author of the Art & Craft of Writing series from La Favorita Press: The Art & Craft of Fiction: A Practitioner's Manual, (2010) The Art & Craft of Story: 2nd Practitioner's Manual (2011) and the forthcoming Art & Craft of Writing: Secret Writer's Advice and Art & Craft of Writing: Favorite Writer's Advice.
Mixon works as a freelance independent editor and author through her award-winning blog, Victoria Mixon, Editor & Author, as well as her Writer's Digest webinar and the San Francisco Writers Conference.
Please feel free to learn more about the art and craft of writing from her through her blog and Twitter:
Top Customer Reviews
You can see for yourself from the table of contents (pasted at the bottom of this review) how in-depth it is. Wow. You can read this book from start to finish, like I did, or you can dive right down to what you need to read at the moment--which is how I'll re-read it. Many times. One of my favorite epiphanies came from something you can see just from the TOC: every aspect of the story is, itself, a story. Full fathom five.
It's Like a Laminated Sheet
I adore it when a writing book jumps me along the learning curve. I've analyzed novels with spreadsheets, counted words, counted pages, drawn graphs of emotion, character arc, and tension. Here is a book that's already done all that for me! Every few chapters I visualized one of those reference guide sheets: with tiny type, brightly colored boxes and graphs, plus it was laminated. I kid you not. What an enormous time saver. Thank you, vintage pulp, for laying it all out and thank you, Victoria, for analyzing it. Also, validation rocks.
Plus it's not just information for the sake of itself. All the scores of books studied and the decades of writing and editing that went into this guide, get focused laser-tight on issues that range from resonance (defined in fifty words or less), to the number of significant characters a book should have (and *how* to condense them), to knowing what you've really written about and discovering the story that you're really trying to tell.Read more ›
She guides and instructs brilliantly, using numerous examples of prose from a variety of fictional genres, whilst always writing with warmth and humour.
I have been creating stories since the 1960's and have purchased more books on writing than I would care to admit. Yet, only a handful have a permanent position beside my writing desk. Victoria Mixon's manuals take pride of place alongside the likes of Anne Lamott, Stephen King, Dara Marks and Robert McKee.
Thank you, once again, Victoria for helping me rediscover the joy in the art & craft of story and fiction.
And how do you learn to write them?
You buy this book.
Victoria Mixon makes you notice what makes stories compelling. She develops your eye for authorly sleight of hand and what, exactly, clever storytellers do.
Like her previous book it's packed with examples from film and prose literature across a wide spread of genres. Chandler rubs cheeks with Kafka. There are practical examples. She walks you through a ghost story she's writing and builds it before your eyes, destruction-tests its logic (yes, a ghost story needs logic). She takes a novel with a cast of too many and fillets them down to a few irresistible folk you'll be more attached to than your dearest friend.
But you don't learn to write devastating, original stories just from reading. The raw material is your own life if you know how to look - and Mixon tells you how.
Plus you have Victoria herself. Opinionated, rumbunctious, sharp and always entertaining, she is a brilliant and ferocious companion, a champion to keep you going as you wring your guts onto the page and wield the scalpel to nip and tuck. Because writing good stories is a long, hard game; there are no quick fixes.
And these are not short-term how-to lessons. They are lessons of a writing lifetime.
I am tight as the bark on a tree and I say spend your money and buy this book. You will refer to it over and over again.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Even though I've been a novelist since 1982, as I told the gifted author, I'm always on the lookout for a great writing book. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Diana Rubino
Yes, I really bought this book. And yes, it really is good. I'm one of those writers who took only one (maybe two) English classes in college. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Wendy Burt-Thomas
I always flip back to this book to re-read her sections on structure. They're quite good, and a little different than most of the other screen/novel-writing books out there. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Bartleby
Have you heard of a faux resolution? I had not until I read Victoria Mixon’s books. If you want to write a relentlessly progressing story that can’t be put down, you must read this... Read morePublished 16 months ago by Eli Potter
Wow. This woman understands storytelling. This book isn't just about fiction, but any story, including memoirs, biographies, and other nonfiction niches. Read morePublished on January 10, 2014 by Aisling D.
Every writer needs this book. Mixon explains story structure in a way that is easy to understand and practice. Read morePublished on November 17, 2013 by Windy L. Harris
Victoria Mixon shares her considerable knowledge of craft with readers with an organized, helpful approach sure to connect with writers at all levels of experience.Published on July 27, 2013 by Amazon Customer
I wanted to learn and I wanted to learn fast. This is the book to read. The cheapest college course you will ever take!Published on May 11, 2013 by Donalie B.