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The Art And Craft Of Storytelling: A Comprehensive Guide To Classic Writing Techniques

4.5 out of 5 stars 30 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1582975597
ISBN-10: 1582975590
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Advance Praise for The Art and Craft of Storytelling:

The essential guidebook for anyone who wants to write a book. Comprehensive and clear, it is a must read for new authors embarking on their writing journey.
- Peter Guber, Chairman and CEO, Mandalay Entertainment Group

I've written for television for many years, functioning like the piano player who can play anything but can't read music. Nancy Lamb's book taught me how read the music of writing. The Art and Craft of Storytelling takes you from plot to character, through writer's block, to the finale. If you want to write, read this book. If you already write but want to read the music, read this book--and keep it handy.
- Joe Halderman, Producer/Writer, CBS News, 48 HOURS MYSTERY

From the Book of Job to Harry Potter, this is the story of stories - and how to spin them with wit, grace and style, This could be the start of a beautiful relationship between your imagination and your pen.
- John Harlow, The Sunday Times of London.

As a teacher of dramatic narrative technique at the Santa Barbara Writers Conference, I can say that this book is going on a "must read" list for my students! The Art and Craft of Storytelling is articulate, cohesive, insightful and comprehensive. It takes every question I've been asked by a student or have discussed with fellow writers and answers it--not just summarily, but in depth and with valuable examples. All of this in a bright humorous style that makes the learning go down easy. A writing book of this caliber is a rare find, and I recommend it for all aspiring writers, as well as established writers looking for an excellent refresher course.
- Dale Griffiths Stamos, SBWC instructor and award-winning playwright

About the Author

Nancy Lamb is the author of forty-three books of fiction and nonfiction for children and adults. She has taught writing at workshops in Singapore; Athens, Georgia; and Big Sur, California. She can be reached through her Web site, www.nancylamb.com.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Writer's Digest Books (December 15, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1582975590
  • ISBN-13: 978-1582975597
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #568,683 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If I had only one book to choose as my "first" book on writing basics, this would be it! I have actually spent so much money buying books that are so lacking. THis book offers a solid primer in all the facets of fiction writing without inundating you with filler. Actually, the book deserves 4.5 stars. The reason why I did not give it five stars was because this is Nancy Lamb's second book on writing fiction and is almost an exact duplicate of her other book called "The Writer's Guide to Crafting Stories for Children", except the examples are of various fiction genres and not children's lit. There is basically alot of overlap in the information presented and I was really expecting something different or more in depth topics of what she touched in her "Writer's Guide to Crafting Stories for Children". So if you already have that book, then there really isn't a need to buy this one. I think because her other book got such rave reviews but was too genre specific, by offering a new version of the same book for a more general audience of writers, more writers would be willing to buy this book instead for its applicability.

However, if you do not have her "Writer's Guide to Crafting Stories for Children", then I would highly recommend this one as your "First" book. It teaches you all that you need to start off writing in such a clear and concise way. It's a quality book that is user-friendly and easy to understand. And although the info is pretty similar to her previous book, I found the new examples in this book refreshing.

Nancy Lamb, if you are reading this, I hope you get to write more books on Fiction writing. We are in deeply need of high quality Editing/Revision books and Character Development/Dialogue books. Writers Digest, take note.
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Format: Paperback
I was beginning my third (unpublished) novel this April,(2009), when it suddenly occurred to me that I really wasn't sure what I was doing. There must be a reason I'm not a published novelist, besides the wrath of God and life is hard. AHA, I'm not a genius,I must need help! Since mentors are scarce on the ground here in East Texas, I bought several books about fiction-writing techniques. Best thing I've ever done. And of the books I bought, Nancy Lamb's was the most helpful. She told me about concrete technique; for instance, structural design, how to begin, moving foward and backward in the story, structuring scenes, how to write subplot, even how to contact your muse, and more. If in the next few years you see my name on a novel, it will be because I read Ms. Lamb's book.
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Format: Paperback
I liked this book a lot -- maybe because I got it at a good price, or because it was my first guide on how to write, but mainly because it had many valid points. Lamb's The Art and Craft Of Storytelling: A Comprehensive Guide to Classic Writing Techniques will help you with: scenes, characters, conquering your 'inner [...]', beginnings, ends, middles, structure, keeping your promise, and much more. It's a sort of thin book, not hard to read at all, and Lamb's voice is rather enjoyable to listen to. I recommend it for a beginner, mainly because I am a beginner at writing and this was my first book.
This book also helps you:
1. Find your genre
2. Moves scenes forward and to the next
3. Find your voice, tone, premise, and theme
4. Make characters that feel and speak like real people

Hope I helped :)
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
70 % practical advice and examples that are easy to apply, 30 % intro material. Practical comments on her writing experience (43 books). The multitude of texts (classics or successful modern authors) illustrate her advice quite well. Author has a captivating writing style using lots of metaphors. Glad I bought her book.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Already, we have a first name friendship, Nancy. That's because I just finished your Storytelling. And it's the friendliest book about writing I've ever read. At 70, I wish I had read it before I wrote my first (and overwrought, overwritten) novel 4 years ago. But your book was probably only in the planning stages, then.

I've been a writer all my life, made a good living in advertising, and you've reinforced a lot of rules I've followed, many I've ignored, and revealed some I wish didn't exist. They'll all help me become the writer I will be.

We have a young writer from Ireland staying with us, and I'm giving her a copy of Nancy Lamb's "Storytelling" with this inscription: Read this wonderful book slowly. And browse through it the rest of your life.

As a playwright, with one recent success, I've also found in Storytelling some great reminders of what keeps a story moving on a stage.

But for now, I'm going to wring out the miscues from that overwrought novel.
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Format: Paperback
Wise...Inspirational...Humorous...Clear!!!

I have been searching...searching and I finally found you! I wanted to transition from writing poetry to a novel! I have read several other " How To " books on the subject but " The Art And Craft Of Storytelling " by far surpasses them all.

Nancy Lamb's book...voice, resonated with me immediately, like a talisman initiating me into the mysteries.

Thank You!
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