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A Writer's Book of Days: A Spirited Companion and Lively Muse for the Writing Life Paperback – August 24, 2010

ISBN-13: 978-1577319368 ISBN-10: 1577319362 Edition: Revised Edition

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: New World Library; Revised Edition edition (August 24, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1577319362
  • ISBN-13: 978-1577319368
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 7.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (63 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #93,559 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Musicians practice. Athletes practice. And so, too, argues Judy Reeves, should writers practice. Her Writer's Book of Days provides a "writing prompt" for each day of the year, and then some: "Write about a time someone said yes"; "Write about leaving"; "Something seemed different." The more you practice, says Reeves, the more you write. And writing from a prompt, she adds, is like having "someone provid[e] the music when you want to dance." The prompts are the backbone of this book, but its pages are fleshed out with advice, inspiration, quotations from writers, encouragement, and a profusion of literary tidbits. Write from the sense, Reeves recommends. Audition words. Take risks. And when all else fails, amuse yourself with these astonishing tidbits from literary lives: T.S. Eliot, we learn, preferred writing with a head cold; Flaubert kept his lover's slippers and mittens in his desk drawer; and Friedrich von Schiller liked to invoke his muse by sniffing rotten apples. --Jane Steinberg --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

“This book dances around the imagination and makes you take out your pens and journal to play.”
SARK, artist/author of Succulent Wild Woman

“Any time someone asks me for writing tips — How can I start? What do you do about writer's block? — I suggest they peruse this wonderful compendium of writing lore, empathy, and daily practice.”
Janet Fitch, author of Paint It Black and White Oleander

“A delightful mix of commonsense and inspiration…I suggest this book to every writing seminar graduate — a way to take the experience home and carry on.”
Christina Baldwin, author of Storycatcher and Life's Companion

“Sure to quench the thirst for inspiration. Reeves's work will find the creative in every writer, and bring it dancing onto the page.”
Fiction Writer

“An invaluable guide for the writer…Full of delicious prompts, exercises, insights, and inspirational tips, it will get people who dream of becoming real writers to do what real writers do — sit down joyfully and get to work!”
Steve Kowit, author of In the Palm of Your Hand

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Customer Reviews

Every writer should have this book in their Library.
Cai Towns
Every time I read a chapter of the book, I want to set everything aside and write all day and night, full of confidence and enthusiasm for the work at hand.
Debra Garfinkle
The inspiration for daily writing practice is non-stop in this book.
Amy E. Wallen

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

54 of 55 people found the following review helpful By Gwendolen Gross on November 23, 1999
Format: Paperback
If anything will get you writing, this book will. Enough prompts to get even the most reluctant practicer going--much more fun that playing scales. This book provides companionship and direction, not to mention diversion in the form of lives of the writers information for when you need a word snack before you start your own work. As a writing teacher, I have all my students buy Judy's book.
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46 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Karen Hertzberg on December 8, 1999
Format: Paperback
Judy Reeves has written a gem of a book--one that actually got me writing in a matter of minutes.
I've been so busy with my writing web community that I told myself I wasn't going to look at my review copy of A Writer's Book of Days until after the first of the year. But once the book was in hand, I couldn't help but thumb through the pages. The stunning design and functional format hooked me immediately. Pretty soon I was reading--and the next thing you know, I was writing on one of the daily writing prompts the book offers. Imagine that--WRITING! I haven't had time for writing--just for the pleasure of it--in months. I've been writing three or more "practice pages" a day ever since, and loving every minute of it.
A Writer's Book of Days is a wonderful motivational tool, but it's also a delicious book full of advice that will, quite simply, make you feel like writing. Reeves encourages practice writing, and includes a year's worth of "writing prompts" designed to jump-start the creative process. But don't dismiss this book as another new-agey volume on freewriting. It's as practical as it is motivational. Reeves' writing is personable and honest. Her book makes you feel as though you're sipping coffee with your favorite writing buddy, talking shop.
I'll be offering my highest recommendation on the Coffeehouse for Writers website!
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39 of 41 people found the following review helpful By B. Schenck on June 26, 2000
Format: Paperback
There are a lot of how-to writers' books around, but Judy Reeves's WRITER'S BOOK OF DAYS fills a void because it gives writers food for thought and starting points from which to work, either doing "practice" pieces or "timed writings" or taking her daily suggestions and going with them wherever the writer wishes. I found it useful and inspiring on these counts.
There are, however, a few things that bother me. The first is the insistence than this practice writing be done "by hand." I know there are a lot of writers who feel that the hand-brain connection is almost sacrosanct and that to write this way is like "breathing" and so on. But I think to insist that that is the only way it should be done is likely to cause some people to turn off entirely, to say, "Well, I just won't bother," because the physical act of writing is difficult for them. They will lose out on the valuable things this book offers because they can't fulfill one of the dictums the author seems to require. My own experience as a writer is that I'm just as connected via computer to my thoughts as I am when I handwrite them. In fact, I have a lifetime of painful memories of handwriting and do as little of it as possible. As a published writer, I know that I can write using computer and that doing so doesn't lessen the connection between my heart and my words, I wish Ms. Reeves hadn't made such a point of that being the only way to do such writing practice.
I wish, too, that she had not found it necessary to take a cheap shot at the romance genre. She doesn't take cheap shots at science fiction or westerns.
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Amy E. Wallen on November 22, 1999
Format: Paperback
The inspiration for daily writing practice is non-stop in this book. The author provides endless sources for getting the creative juices flowing. This book makes a person feel the passion that writing is all about, and it's done with humour and thoughtful quotes. The advice is gentle and encouraging. No one can pick up this book and not put it down without feeling the strongest urge to write. We will survive this thing called "writing," and Ms. Reeves shows us how.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 18, 2000
Format: Paperback
I cannot say enough good things about this book. Judy Reeves provides a wealth of information on how to simply put pen to paper and let your imagination take control. Reeves' words give the writer support and encouragement to let his or her voice come through, and she has insights on how to successfully conquer writer's block. I actually felt like I was sitting in on one of her writing workshops.
I hadn't taken the time to write anything in quite awhile because I felt burned out & nothing seemed to inspire my creative voice. Since I received Reeves' book several days ago, I have spent more time writing in that short period of time than I have in the previous 6 months. And in my writing sessions I could really feel the power of my words and imagination coming together. What's more, I can hardly wait to get started on the next day's writing exercise.
This book has singlehandedly made me feel good about writing again. If you are stuck in a rut, A Writer's Book of Days will serve as a magnificent jumpstart. If your work is flowing smoothly, this book will make your writing--and the way you approach it--even better. I have a collection of writing books, but I know this is the one I will come back to again & again.
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