- Audible Audio Edition
- Listening Length: 8 hours and 5 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio
- Audible.com Release Date: October 4, 2000
- Whispersync for Voice: Ready
- Language: English
- ASIN: B0000547HM
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
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On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft Audible – Unabridged
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Top Customer Reviews
The second part, "On Writing," is where the aspiring novelists will find inspiration. Assuming you're a serious writer (or wanting to be a published one), you'd no doubt would have read the countless manuals on the mechanics of writing. With Mr. King, you do get short lessons in the mechanics of prose here and there. What he mostly offers to the aspiring writer is the inspiration, the cheerleading, and as some have already suggested, after reading it makes you want to sit and write something. He actually allows you into his writing routine, when and where he writes, how many months it takes to write the first draft, and even how he goes about editing the second draft.
Some very original thoughts I found quite interesting:
1. Story is a fossil you find on the ground, and you gradually dig it out slowly.
2. He doesn't plot his stories. He puts "a group of characters in some sort of predicament and then watch them try to work themselves free." In fact he even goes as far as to say, "plot is shift, and best kept under house arrest."
3. Write first draft with the "door" closed, and the second draft with it open.
There are truly gems here for writers, simple, direct, to the point. As always, he doesn't talk down to you.Read more ›
It generally takes Stephen King about three months to finish the first draft of a book. He began "On Writing" at the end of 1997, but put it aside a few months later, unsure how to finish it. Over a year later, in mid-1999, King decided to spend the summer "finishing the damn writing book."
The events of late-June, 1999 interfered with those plans. King spent three weeks in the hospital after he was struck by a van. In late July he decided it was time to start writing again, and it was "On Writing" that he chose for his return to work. The finished product, "On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft" will be released by Scribner in early October, 2000.
It was a discussion with Amy Tan while on tour with the Rock Bottom Remainders that inspired King to write this book. "No one ever asks about the language," Tan said in response to King's query about the sorts of questions that she doesn't get at author appearances. "Serious" authors get asked that but they don't ask the popular novelists who, he says "care about language in our humble way, and care passionately about the art and craft of telling stories on paper."
King opens with a lengthy memoir that "attempted to show some of the incidents and life-situations which made me into the sort of writer I turned out to be." He calls this section "C.V," as in "curriculum vitae," his list of accomplishments and job skills. Some of the story is familiar, though many of the details are new.Read more ›
As a human, I was touched by his childhood anecdotes and often laughed with him about his insecurities. I am still in awe at what he has recently had to overcome physically. I mean, damn.
As a writer, I am grateful for a brief glimpse into his vocational world. I gained confidence from learning about things I have been doing right and have changed many bad habits (may the adverb rest in peace). I've read several tomes on the subject and believe his reigns as the most complete.
I've been a fan of King's since the seventh grade when I was given The Dead Zone and Cujo as an Easter present. A year later I had read every book he'd published (with the exception of the dreaded Limited Editions of which I could opine negatively for hours - suffice it to say that writing should be for everyone to read, not just the rich). I've read or listened to all his books since. I can honestly say, that this is my favorite.
Sometimes the coldest hands to wrap around your neck are the true ones.
The only bad thing I can say about this book is that it's too short, something one rarely has the opportunity to state regarding the beloved author.
A huge thank you to Mr. King for a brief indulgence into the life of a genius.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I'm not even a huge fan of his writing, but this book is one of the best how-to books ever, and a good biography to boot.Published 17 minutes ago by Amazon customer
It's part memoir and part writing textbook. Both are connected, and it's all worth reading. It's great value for what you spend.Published 3 hours ago by Sir Ratesabunch
Wonderful. I've been a fan of Stephen King since I was a child reading "Night Shift", "Skeleton Crew", and "Different Seasons". Read morePublished 4 hours ago by Ingrid Ulery
Invaluable. While this is not a book meant to take the place of Strunk's The Elements of Style, On Writing goes beyond the strict academic business of writing. Mr. Read morePublished 21 hours ago by Matthew St. Cyr
I have enough fear in my life and have avoided Stephen King's books. But this book is spectacular and now I feel as if he is my friend. Read morePublished 1 day ago by Toni K. Kief
In true King style, little bulls*** and a lot of real! Written at a pivotal point in his life, I felt gifted he was able to share so much of himself and his skills, in a dialog... Read morePublished 3 days ago by V Schwartz
The book in the first place about Stephen King, the second about the art of writing. About intuition and tools a good craftsman. Read morePublished 3 days ago by Matt Mayevsky