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Wonderbook: The Illustrated Guide to Creating Imaginative Fiction Paperback – October 15, 2013
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Top Customer Reviews
if the number of PostIt notes one writes as the result of inspiration from a book is a valuable to metric to anyone, I think this book has more PostIt's per page than anything I've ever read. I stopped putting them in the book because it was a distraction of its own.
If there is any complaint I would lodge, it is that the glossy pages reflect a lot of light if one is sitting at a desk to read the book. Maybe I need a different desk lamp, so the problem isn't the book. But I'm spending several hours a day, moving at a glacial pace because I get so many ideas. If you think you are an idea person, and you want to write fiction, then get this book to help you organize your ideas. If you don't think you are an idea person, get this book and see if it doesn't help you unlock the part of you that your peers made you hide under a mattress when you were young.
Don't be fooled by the whimsical cover; much like attempting to describe with gorgeous precision the inner workings of a fantastic setting for a novel, what is going on on the inside is much deeper and more complex than you might think.
I've read a lot of books on writing at this point in my life, but most of them haven't addressed the questions that linger with me while I'm sitting down to write. So many choices that a writer can make seem to 'depend' on one thing or another that it's difficult to set out examples with hard and fast rules (or, if it isn't, a thousand other books already exist which contain those few inviolate rules, and therefore those aren't the questions that stick with me). It's a difficult beast to wrangle, especially in useful specifics. On top of that, I think that many of the processes involved in describing those choices or the results of those choices from a reader's perspective are abstract, more a question of what is sensed than something easily articulated.
Wonderbook comes the closest of any instructive book I own to digging down into the nitty-gritty of those many abstract questions. It exhaustively discusses the particulars of a written work's moving parts, and does this from many different angles whenever possible. If a novel is a deck of cards, Wonderbook seems to spread the deck all around the floor into the thinnest layer, so that you can see everything clearly, shuffling things around to have a look at the particulars in as much detail as you'd like.
For me, the 'wonder' is that doing this so acutely and with such precision did not make the book any less a joy to read.Read more ›
Everytime I open it, I find something I didn't see the first time. You willnot regret taking a chance on this.
I've taught creative writing for 20+ years, and have books published in another genre. But I am new to writing speculative fiction, and am a bit stuck on a novel I'm working on, so I hoped to be "jump-started" by this book, or at least get some help on plotting and what to do when you get stuck in the middle. This book, unfortunately, did not help me with that. In fact, my only real criticism of the book (leaving aside for a moment that this was simply not aimed at someone like me, which is really more my mistake than the author's) was the section I most looked forward to, Middles, was virtually nonexistent. As in there was a cool image, but then it seemed to be over. A page or two which seemed more about endings but did relate to middles too, and then, nothing. I actually went back several times to see if I had missed something, but I did not. This is probably my most serious criticism of the book--what happened to the "middle" section, the section I suspect most new novelists struggle with?
If you're an experienced writer or have had good basic creative writing classes, a lot of the information in this book is going to be old hat for you. It explains scenes and exposition, use of dialogue, what constitutes a good opening, etc. There is some information on plotting which was too basic for me, but was well done.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
By far the most imaginative and entertaining book on the craft of writing that I've ever read. I agree with other reviewers that much of the advice in Wonderbook isn't new. Read morePublished 3 days ago by ViolettePen
This is a great guide to stimulating your creativity. And, if that's how you use it and what you expect, then it'll work for you just fine. Read morePublished 20 days ago by Kevin
I bought this book to track me to write in ways that I don't already know previously. I had no idea that it also addresses worldbuilding, and now I'm even more excited about it.Published 1 month ago by Lacey Wahl
What a beautiful book. Filled with so many treasures, writing tips, inspiration and beautiful illustrations. Read morePublished 3 months ago by MissMKH
This beautiful book covers all the bases for writers! Especially helpful for genre writersPublished 4 months ago by J. waffle
WONDERBOOK is an invaluable Resource for Fiction Writers everywhere. What a Treasure of Writers who came together to contribute to this Bible of Creativity. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Di Finch
The Wonderbook is a unique, imaginative and entertaining book with truly wonderful illustrations!
Especially great for fantastical fiction writers, which I am not, but even so... Read more