- Paperback: 176 pages
- Publisher: Joshua Odell Editions (August 1, 1994)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1877741094
- ISBN-13: 978-1877741098
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (101 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,324 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Zen in the Art of Writing: Essays on Creativity 0th Edition
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Browse award-winning titles. See more
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
Top Customer Reviews
And it's all because of books like this.
Zen in the Art of Writing is classic Bradbury: the crisp, short sentences, the vivid mental imagery, the amazing insights into his own writings -- all of it. This book uplifts me, moves me and fills me with awe.
It is, without a doubt, the best book on writing I have ever read.
Why? Because what he shares seems as pertinent to me as if he wrote it FOR me. Example: Page 17. One day, he discovered that his story titles were nothing more than a list of nouns, such as The Lake. The Night. The Monster. The Town Clock. The Carousel. The Crowd.
Such simplicity. Yet, after reading this book I found myself creating my own mental list of titles the same way. Suddenly, just about anything seemed ripe for a story, and infused with some hidden, dark meaning.
The Man on the Corner. The Empty Room. The Ten Foot Oak Tree. The Noise in the Basement. The Tea Leaf. The Knight and the Bishop.
I don't know why it works for me, but it does. Each of those "titles" (that I just came up with as I'm writing this) could be fleshed out into a story. For some reason, when I see things as nouns, my imagination is uncorked and I begin to feel the urge to explore the thoughts invoked.
Try it sometime.
Another example: The chapter "How to Keep and Feed a Muse." Priceless. Magical. He shares ways to awaken the sleeping giant within...and set pen to paper with stellar results.
If you're a writer, you need this book. If you're a lover of Bradbury, you need this book. If you just want to know how one of the 20th century's most lauded authors achieved that status, you need this book.
I re-read Zen in the Art of Writing whenever I feel my muse begin to slip away like a wisp of fog caught by a sudden breeze. And she returns to me. Grudgingly, perhaps. But she returns.
I believe this book could do the same for you.
I bought this book in Miami Beach. I picked it from among other writing-related books when I opened it and saw a chapter entitled "Drunk, and in Charge of a Bicycle."
This book is not about writing mechanics or technique. It forces you to face two absolute requirements for being a writer:
(1) You must love to write and do it every day, and
(2) You must use your own voice.
According to the author, the desire for fame, money, or literary elitism is as useless as a computer without software. (I would suggest that it's more like a program without a computer. Whatever.)
The last chapter, and the concluding poems, are inspiring. Mr. Bradbury knows that writers despise untruths. I finished his book in two evenings. When I put it down I said, "Yeah." Next morning I would be up dark and early. Writing is hard. Everything else is harder.
Even if you are not a writer, you may want to get this book just for Bradbury's zest.
This book is a tight tapestry of several ideas. It is part autobiographical, with the story of him ripping up his Buck Rodger's comics because his friends (like Job's friends) mocked him. Later he ripped up his friends as he stood strong for his conations and returned to his true bliss.
Bradbury also retells the story of his meeting Mr. Electrico at the carnival. Besides being the basis of "The Illustrated Man" and "Something Wicked This Way Comes," this meeting with the carne was Bradbury's equivalent of First Communion. He was never the same afterwards.
He also has some "nuts and bolts" tips for writers.
1. Let yourself explode. There are two types of explosions. One is the IED (improvised explosive device), where you just go to pieces. But there is also the explosion of popcorn. Be popcorn. Drop your restraints and inhibitions.
2. Write 1,000 words a day. This is not a whole lot, the equivalent of one full Amazon.com review. Trust me it works--it gets the garbage out of system. Practice makes perfect.
3. Follow a weekly regimen. Monday write. The next few days rewrite what you have written. This is crap filtration. Saturday send off the manuscript. Wash, rinse, repeat.
4. Don't think. That is, don't over think. Listen to your subconscious--that shadowy figure in the back of your heart that keeps talking to you. She tells you what is right or wrong. She's the same being who tells you things you had never thought of before. This is the muse. Without it, you cannot write.
This review cannot do justice to Ray's prose and sage advice. All I can do is whet your appetite, and hope you'll bite. The book is delicious!
ACTUNG: !!!BE SURE YOU GET THE EXPANDED VERSION!!!
If you ever need to be inspired in your writing, read this book. He will draw the passion of writing out of you, remind you why we do what we do, and slowly build you a blueprint on how to do it daily. I highly commend this book for any writer and any level.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Today, "ingesting, churning, and pondering" Bradury's words may be more...Read more