- Paperback: 176 pages
- Publisher: Soft Skull Press (November 28, 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1933368705
- ISBN-13: 978-1933368702
- Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 0.6 x 8.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 6 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,445,570 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Writing Workshop Note Book: Notes on Creating and Workshopping
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Poet Ziegler, the award-winning professor of writing at Columbia University, whose previous Writing Workshop books are well regarded by teachers and students, has put together what he calls a note book for workshopping. The first part focuses on personal writing strategies—how to get the creativity going, how to flex different writing skills. The second part discusses how to use the workshop experience productively. To Ziegler, the workshop is that rare place where writing is actually an obligation, writing is what you're supposed to do. He gives detailed advice on critiquing other people's work; essentially, comments shouldn't be negative or positive, but helpful. Ziegler's own experience running workshops leads him to offer much advice on encouraging other people's creativity, but it's his love of the literary anecdote that makes his advice so palatable. To illustrate that feedback needs to be useful, for example, he quotes Anne Sexton's husband's (useless) response to one of her works, I don't think that's too hotsy-totsy. As Ziegler talks about his own mentors or difficult situations he's handled with his students, he models, for readers, the constructive, compassionate writing teacher. While intended for the apprentice writer, Ziegler's manual, with its useful ideas for creative writing assignments and its marvelously brief copyediting appendix, should be read by students and teachers of creative writing. (Jan.)
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"Alan Ziegler respects both the craft and the mystery of writing, which is a rare combination indeed. In !e Writing Workshop Note Book he has done the nearly impossible--he has written an enormously useful book on writing and teaching that expands, rather than reduces, one's sense of wonder in the face of literature." -- Michael Cunningham
"Don't be taken in by the modesty of this title. Alan Ziegler's `notes' about writing are wise and farreaching. Here is a rich trove of craft details; here is a map of civility for student and teacher alike. He understands what Yeats called `the fascination of what's difficult': also the intense pleasure. He offers us a generous and pragmatic vision of each." -- Margo Jefferson
"Alan Ziegler writes about the artistic process with humor and lucidity, and in so doing humanizes the great ones, whose daily struggles with the blank page were no less arduous than our own. A wonderful guide." -- Daniel Alarcón
"An invaluable compendium of ideas, information, memories and provocations on the subject of writing. Ziegler explores the process from every angle--approaching and re-approaching to dig deeper-- offering even those of us who have been at it for a long time provocations, insights and illuminations as experienced and remembered by the writers we revere. #e book is designed to prompt us to work harder, more often, with a higher standard for ourselves. It is a wonderfully useful tool for anyone who writes, who aspires to write, or who wonders how the heck they do it." -- A.M. Homes
"It's enormously useful, funny, worthwhile, knowledgeable--the writing assignments are terrific (I can't wait to steal some of them), the quotes from other writers pointed and flavorsome, the whole teaching philosophy sound and humane " -- Phillip Lopate