Start reading Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within on the free Kindle Reading App or on your Kindle in under a minute. Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here.
This title is not currently available for purchase
Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Color:
Image not available

To view this video download Flash Player

 

Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within (Shambhala Library) [Kindle Edition]

Natalie Goldberg
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (341 customer reviews)

Pricing information not available.

Free Kindle Reading App Anybody can read Kindle books—even without a Kindle device—with the FREE Kindle app for smartphones, tablets and computers.

To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition --  
Paperback $9.60  
Kindle Daily Deals
Kindle Delivers: Daily Deals
Subscribe to find out about each day's Kindle Daily Deals for adults and young readers. Learn more (U.S. customers only)

Book Description

With insight, humor, and practicality, Natalie Goldberg inspires writers and would-be writers to take the leap into writing skillfully and creatively. She offers suggestions, encouragement, and solid advice on many aspects of the writer’s craft: on writing from “first thoughts” (keep your hand moving, don’t cross out, just get it on paper), on listening (writing is ninety percent listening; the deeper you listen, the better you write), on using verbs (verbs provide the energy of the sentence), on overcoming doubts (doubt is torture; don’t listen to it)—even on choosing a restaurant in which to write.  Goldberg sees writing as a practice that helps writers comprehend the value of their lives. The advice in her book, provided in short, easy-to-read chapters with titles that reflect the author’s witty approach (“Writing Is Not a McDonald’s Hamburger,” “Man Eats Car,” “Be an Animal”), will inspire anyone who writes—or who longs to.



Editorial Reviews

Review

"I'm convinced that none of the writers of my acquaintance can go another day without a copy of Natalie Goldberg's magical manual Writing Down the Bones."—Linda Weltner, The Boston Globe

"The secret of creativity, Natalie Goldberg makes clear, is to subtract rules for writing, not add them. It's a process of 'uneducation' rather than education. Proof that she knows what she's talking about is abundant in her own sentences. They flow with speed and grace and accuracy and simplicity. It looks easy to a reader, but writers know it is the hardest writing of all."—Robert Pirsig, author of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

About the Author

Natalie Goldberg is the author of ten books. Writing Down the Bones, her first, has sold over one million copies and has been translated into twelve languages. For the last thirty years she has practiced Zen and taught seminars in writing as a spiritual practice. She lives in New Mexico.

Product Details

  • File Size: 287 KB
  • Print Length: 260 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1590307941
  • Publisher: Shambhala Publications; 1 Expanded edition (August 31, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003ZSISIU
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #298,137 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
  •  Would you like to give feedback on images?.


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
164 of 178 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Writing Classic April 24, 2004
Format:Paperback
Natalie Goldberg's insights about writing as a spirtual practice are just as valid today as they were in 1986 when this book was first published. Her suggestions to writers work, both for beginning writers and for writers who depend on words in order to make a living. I recommend this book to the emerging writers I mentor as a must-have reference second only to a good dictionary.
As a professional writer who has written over 20 books and 500 magazine articles, I've given Writing Down the Bones away several times after mistakenly deciding that I'd outgrown it. Just as often I've had to go out and buy another copy to remind myself that there's more to the writing life than rejections, and royalties. Every time I reread it, I find something new. Last year I read Goldberg's memoir, Long Quiet Highway: Waking Up in America, which provides insights about how she came to her beliefs about writing and spirituality. I suggest reading both books.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
182 of 206 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It's a good book, but overrated. December 28, 1999
Format:Paperback
A few months ago, around the time when I bought Goldberg's 'Writing Down the Bones', I was just starting to consider myself a serious writer. At first, I was attracted to Goldberg's warm and friendly voice and I felt like a member of her free-spirited writing posse, along for the magic carpet ride, venturing to far away cafes. I once thought of this book in the same frame of mind that so many kind, uncritical reviewers here have; as a kind of 'writer's bible.' Now that I am a few months older and wiser, I am able to see that the book is just a string of well-meaning encouragements that when putting pen-to-paper, are not as instrumental and helpful as you might think. One good thing happened as a result of my reading this book; I have made writing a practice, using notebooks as Natalie suggested.
The best, and if I may say, most fruitful and promising path to good writing is reading the words of those who have walked before us. Read and absorb the styles of others, THEN let the pen write directly and honestly from your heart. Write your own 'writer's bible.'
Was this review helpful to you?
446 of 512 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A Mixed Bag of Bones December 5, 2001
Format:Paperback
I align myself more with the negative reviews of this book. It's easy to get caught up in some of the philosophical warm-fuzzy rhetoric of Ms. Goldberg. Akin to watching Oprah pull at an audience's heartstrings, Ms. Goldberg pulls readers in with story after story trumpeting the same message of writing from the heart. The initial reaction is to feel that there's nothing to question about what Ms. Goldberg says.
When I purchased the book, I saw nothing to indicate that it was specific to one particular form of writing, but after reading it, I feel that the author speaks much more to poetry than other forms of writing. The author on several occasions admonishes us to write in the moment and not dwell on ideas we've had in the past. She relates an experience of one student who had a fully-formed idea while out jogging but couldn't reproduce it when s/he got home to the blank page. Goldberg went into a spiel about how we should just let go of those thoughts that are not inspired or conceived in the moment that we sit down to write. That's where I have a fundamental disagreement with her and feel her philosophy becomes almost destructive to new writers. Perhaps poetry functions that way. Perhaps someone has to have that spontaneous quality about their work in order for it to be fresh and exciting. I don't know. I'm not a poet. However, for novels, short stories, and longer works, you would be a fool to let great ideas get away. Personally, I like to let some of those ideas percolate for weeks and even years. Yes, we mature and our perspectives change, but in a lot of cases that only means that we can approach a subject in a different way as we grow older. It doesn't make the subject any better or worse to write about.
Bottom line: I came away from the book with mixed feelings.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you?
35 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So Good I Couldn't Put It Down August 31, 2001
Format:Paperback
When I took a creative writing course a few years ago, Natalie Goldberg's "Writing Down the Bones" was a required text. It was so good I couldn't put it down.
Natalie points out that all beginning writers are controlled by their "inner censor" and therefore write what they think other people want to hear, or they put a false face on their writing. Natalie does indeed "free the writer within," by giving us permission to "just write sh--" (her words,not mine). The gist of the book is this: just write. Go for volume, not quality. The quality will come as you gain experience and lose your inhibitions. Natalie says everything you write, not just the good stuff but the bad as well, creates a "compost heap of the mind." It stays in your subconscious and mellows and ripens, ready to fertilize your skills and imagination for future writing projects. I actually put Natalie's suggestions into practice and kept a writer's journal for several years (and still do), and wrote thousands of words. I feel that my writing skills did indeed improve and even shine.
Natalie also discusses some things to try, like writing in different places, and discusses useful topics like metaphor and simile. Her book is not a technical manual, but rather an easy read, a personal insight into the joy and freedom from uninhibited writing. I always recommend this book first to anyone who expresses an interest in learning to write.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent --- arrived in great condition --- as advertised. Thank you
Published 2 days ago by Bomberpilot13
5.0 out of 5 stars It is fantastic. When Natalie states her purpose as “freeing the ...
I don’t know why I waited so long to read this book. It is fantastic. When Natalie states her purpose as “freeing the writer within," the emphasis in on the word “free. Read more
Published 4 days ago by Mark D. Friedman
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent resource for tapping in
Published 10 days ago by JohnnyV8
5.0 out of 5 stars Offers great encouragement and practical
If you have any aspirations to be a writer, this is a must read. Couldn't put it down. Offers great encouragement and practical advice
Published 15 days ago by David Pointon
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent book....I just want to write!
Published 18 days ago by Pamela Savory
4.0 out of 5 stars Help for beginning writers who don't know how to get started.
Many years ago when I was a fledgling writer, I discovered WRITING DOWN THE BONES. Since then I have read/studied every Natalie Goldberg book I found as well as many books from... Read more
Published 21 days ago by Hope Irvin Marston
5.0 out of 5 stars Feel good advice
Really good advice and insight into the process of writing. Really Zen quality is wonderful. Gets repetitive in the middle, but picks up at the end again. Read more
Published 23 days ago by Neilah Desiree
5.0 out of 5 stars Being a writer who seeks mentorship, Natalie Goldberg helped ...
Being a writer who seeks mentorship, Natalie Goldberg helped me out of the rut of writer's block and helped me to pack some flesh on the skeleton. Read more
Published 26 days ago by Lesli Hattaway
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic reference
This was the first writers handbook I had ever read years ago. And Natalie Goldberg's advice still rings true to course. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Pamela Carter
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best books about how to write
One of the best books about how to write. This book is also very inspirational. Thank you Natalie, I love your book.
Published 1 month ago by Glen S.
Search Customer Reviews
Search these reviews only

More About the Author

Natalie Goldberg lived in Brooklyn until she was six, when her family moved out to Farmingdale, Long Island, where her father owned the bar the Aero Tavern. From a young age, Goldberg was mad for books and reading, and especially loved Carson McCullers's The Ballad of the Sad Cafe, which she read in ninth grade. She thinks that single book led her eventually to put pen to paper when she was twenty-four years old. She received a BA in English literature from George Washington University and an MA in humanities from St. John's University.

Goldberg has painted for as long as she has written, and her paintings can be seen in Living Color: A Writer Paints Her World and Top of My Lungs: Poems and Paintings. They can also be viewed at the Ernesto Mayans Gallery on Canyon Road in Sante Fe.

A dedicated teacher, Goldberg has taught writing and literature for the last thirty-five years. She also leads national workshops and retreats, and her schedule can be accessed via her website: nataliegoldberg.com

In 2006, she completed with the filmmaker Mary Feidt a one-hour documentary, Tangled Up in Bob, about Bob Dylan's childhood on the Iron Range in Northern Minnesota. The film can be obtained on Amazon or the website tangledupinbob.com.

Goldberg has been a serious Zen practitioner since 1974 and studied with Katagiri Roshi from 1978 to 1984.

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?


Forums

There are no discussions about this product yet.
Be the first to discuss this product with the community.
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 


Look for Similar Items by Category