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Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within Paperback – February 2, 2016

4.7 out of 5 stars 1,843 ratings

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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 fourteen books, including Writing Down the Bones, which has changed the way writing is taught in this country. She teaches retreats nationally and internationally. She lives in New Mexico.
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Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Shambhala; Anniversary edition (February 2, 2016)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 224 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 161180308X
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1611803082
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 10.2 ounces
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 5.48 x 0.66 x 8.47 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.7 out of 5 stars 1,843 ratings

About the author

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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.

Customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5
1,843 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

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Top reviews from other countries

Jade
5.0 out of 5 stars Goldberg has a profound understanding of the writing process
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on May 3, 2021
5 people found this helpful
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Wordweaver
4.0 out of 5 stars The book is as its reputation says - inspiring and gets you to write. That is what I wanted and that is what I got.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on July 16, 2016
22 people found this helpful
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Alec F
3.0 out of 5 stars Random thoughts which are unlikely to help many intending authors, and not good value.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on December 27, 2014
8 people found this helpful
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Guinneal
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on November 28, 2020
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John Mccutcheon
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspirational and useful
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on November 24, 2021