37 of 39 people found the following review helpful
'Writing the Natural Way' lives up to its name,
This review is from: Writing the Natural Way (Paperback)
Consider this: all writing begins with an idea. The art of writing is the act of expressing that idea as succinctly and wholly as possible. And that's the hardest thing for many writers ~ getting on screen the right words, in the right order.
Whether it's a lack of inspiration, an overload of information or just muddled thinking, writer's block is a very real affliction that affects most writers at some stage.
The good news is that 'Writing the Natural Way' offers a solution for those faced with this problem.
Put simply, psychologist and author Dr Gabriele Rico has developed the concept of 'clustering', which essentially circumvents the left hemisphere of the brain (what she refers to as the 'Sign Mind'), so that you can release raw creativity from the right hemisphere (or 'Design Mind'), which is responsible for artist pursuits.
Her book contains a variety of simple exercises and strategies that stimulate the left and right hemispheres to work individually or simultaneously to solve problems. They are also designed to enhance a writer's potential, by accessing latent language, story-telling abilities and natural styles.
Rico's work is ground breaking but it is not new. In fact, this book was originally published more than 15 years ago. This new edition has been completely updated with inspirational quotations, 'before and after' writing samples from her students as well as a range of techniques and activities to help the reader make the transition to this new way of thinking and writing.
Admittedly, I had not heard of Rico's 'clustering' technique before reading her book. However I had used for a number of years a similar technique, called 'mind mapping'. The two techniques essentially work in the same manner. What I like about Rico's approach are the many examples and exercises she includes.
Her tools allow anyone to think laterally and to write with greater power, focus and effect. It's all about excavating ideas from seemingly dormant recesses of the mind and shaping this raw material into powerful forms of communication . . . something the author does well.
This is an excellent guide and painless workshop manual for any new or experienced writer who wants to discover a new dimension in their work.
Rico offers a simple but powerful tool that any writer can understand and apply to their work. Once you've used it a few times, you'll find it indispensable for brainstorming and writing literally any kind of work.
-- Michael Meanwell, author of the critically-acclaimed 'The Enterprising Writer' and 'Writers on Writing'. For more book reviews and prescriptive articles for writers, visit [...]