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The Writer's Workout: 366 Tips, Tasks, & Techniques From Your Writing Career Coach Paperback – December 26, 2011
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The book is divided into sections corresponding to the seasons of the year, and writers should appreciate Christina's awareness of the cyclical nature of creating, writing and selling one's words. Because every writer goes through these stages time and again, the writer's workout -- like any good muscle-building regimen -- is a skill-building tool to use over and over again. I find myself turning to it when I need a jolt of inspiration, a compassionate colleague, or a swift kick in the pants. Christina is always ready with whichever kind of coaching I most need.
I found my expectations of the creative and publishing process changed (for the better) as a result of reading this book. For instance, Christina explains writers should expect to write 10 drafts. Sometimes I surely write more than 10, sometimes I surely need fewer. Either way, it helps to start the process with the expectation that there will be many opportunities for revision and improvement along the way. I was also reminded of the importance of putting pen to paper -- or fingers to keys. Christina cautions against spending too much time on reading and quasi-conversation and not enough time in the trenches. "Deep thoughts come from deep processes," she reminds. Mucking around in our own thoughts and ideas, putting them on the page, confronting them, criticizing, rearranging. That is the deep process that yields strong written work. And it is, Christina reminds us, intensely gratifying.
Within each section, writers will find tips, tools and techniques for each area of their writing career, including platform development. This book is broad in its treatment of the writing life, covering queries, idea-generation, drafting, interviews, relationships with editors, and the writer's dynamic. It is not intended to teach writers how to do these tasks in nitty-gritty detail, Katz's other books provide targeted teaching on many topics. This book encourages the reader to attend to all areas of their writing career without losing sight of the the writing itself.
Invest in this book. You'll read it more than once.
Writers are notorious for tons of ideas with very little follow through. Christina cuts through the excuses and procrastination, delivering encouraging yet kick-in-the-pants motivation to set your writing goals and WRITE. Her workouts are short and simple yet majorly effective. She nudges us to 'meet the goal you need to meet today', in doing so we learn to hone and narrow our focus--thus getting writing things DONE.
The Writer's Workout: 366 Tips, Tasks, & Techniques From Your Writing Career Coach is an invaluable tool for writers from a motivating writer's coach who shows you all you need to do is focus on your writing goals and WRITE!
-- Dana Britt
When I heard about this book, I knew I needed it.
Now that I have had a chance to look over the electronic version, I am so happy that I ordered a copy. The daily exercises are applicable to writers at various stages in their careers and strike a nice balance between craft and marketing. Katz sets goals, such as sending one pitch per week, that are realistic and help each of us build accountability. She also gives tips to help writers keep their emotional health strong--the writing life involves a tremendous amount of rejection, and it can take a toll of the best of us.
The only thing I would like to see is an accompanying workbook that allows us to track our progress on each goal and jot down our personal notes. I see my copy becoming quite dog-eared over the course of the year, and I can already tell that some days I will need more room to write. This functionality might also be something that could be integrated into future editions of the book, as the electronic publishing tools allow.
I recommend this book wholeheartedly. I will be following it in 2012, and I hope you will join me on that journey.