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Writers on Writing: Collected Essays from the New York Times

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Writers on Writing: Collected Essays from the New York Times Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Today's most celebrated writers explore literature and the literary life in an inspirational collection of original essays.

By turns poignant, practical, and hilarious, Writers on Writing brings together more than forty of contemporary literature's finest voices. Drawn from the distinguished New York Times column of the same name, it features essays by an extraordinary group of prizewinning and bestselling contributors.

The pieces range from reflections on the daily craft of writing to the intersection of art's and life's consequential moments. Authors discuss what impels them to write: creating a sense of control in a turbulent universe; bearing witness to events that would otherwise be lost in history or within the writer's soul; recapturing a fragment of time. Others praise mentors and lessons, whether from the classroom, daily circumstances, or the pages of a favorite writer. For anyone interested in the art and rewards of writing, Writers on Writing offers an uncommon and revealing view of a writer's world.

Contributors include Russell Banks, Saul Bellow, E. L. Doctorow, Louise Erdrich, Richard Ford, Carl Hiaasen, Jamaica Kincaid, Barbara Kingsolver, Sue Miller, Walter Mosley, Joyce Carol Oates, Marge Piercy, Annie Proulx, Carol Shields, Jane Smiley, John Updike, Kurt Vonnegut Jr., and Elie Wiesel.

Review:

"The essays...are all unified by an overwhelming sense of generosity of spirit, of writers offering encouragement, reflection, and introspection..." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"Darnton conceived of the idea while he was writing his first novel and struggling with matters of craft, art, and intent. He sensed that readers, many of whom wish they were writers, would enjoy reading about writers' lives, and his subsequent invitations to stellar literary talents to write about writing resulted in piquant, bracing, and virtuosic essays that are as much about life as they are about creativity." Booklist

Review:

"Unlike many assemblages of previously published works, this collection of 41 essays from the New York Times's "Writers on Writing" column is more than the sum of its parts. Just as Times culture editor Darnton hoped when he devised the series for writers to "talk about their craft," the result is a thoughtful examination of writers' concerns about the creative process and the place of literature in America. Appropriately for works commissioned for a major newspaper, the essays are immediately engaging and compelling all the way through....Overall, the writers' pensiveness and amity make for a thought-provoking yet reassuring read a good bedside book. Fans of writers-on-writing anthologies and close readers of the New York Times who may have bypassed these essays for the immediate payoff of a front-page headline should pause to enjoy this rich collection." Publishers Weekly

Synopsis:

Today's most celebrated writers explore literature and the literary life in an inspirational collection of original essays".Writers on Writing" brings together more than 40 of contemporary literature's finest voices, with essays by Russell Banks, Saul Bellow, E.L. Doctorow, Louise Erdrich, Richard Ford, Carl Hiaasen and more.

Synopsis:

Today's most celebrated writers explore literature and the literary life in an inspirational collection of original essays.

By turns poignant, practical, and hilarious, Writers on Writing brings together more than forty of contemporary literature's finest voices. Drawn from the distinguished New York Times column of the same name, it features essays by an extraordinary group of prizewinning and bestselling contributors.

The pieces range from reflections on the daily craft of writing to the intersection of art's and life's consequential moments. Authors discuss what impels them to write: creating a sense of control in a turbulent universe; bearing witness to events that would otherwise be lost in history or within the writer's soul; recapturing a fragment of time. Others praise mentors and lessons, whether from the classroom, daily circumstances, or the pages of a favorite writer. For anyone interested in the art and rewards of writing, Writers on Writing offers an uncommon and revealing view of a writer's world.

Contributors include Russell Banks, Saul Bellow, E. L. Doctorow, Louise Erdrich, Richard Ford, Carl Hiaasen, Jamaica Kincaid, Barbara Kingsolver, Sue Miller, Walter Mosley, Joyce Carol Oates, Marge Piercy, Annie Proulx, Carol Shields, Jane Smiley, John Updike, Kurt Vonnegut Jr., and Elie Wiesel.

About the Author

John Darnton, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the George Polk Award for his journalism, is culture editor for The New York Times and author of two novels.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Introduction by John Darnton

"A Literary Pilgrim Progresses to the Past"" by André Aciman

"A Novelist's Vivid Memory Spins Fiction of Its Own"" by Russell Banks

"To Engage the World More Fully, Follow a Dog" by Rick Bass

"Hidden Within Technology's Empire, a Republic of Letters" by Saul Bellow

"Pupils Glimpse an Idea, Teacher Gets a Gold Star" by Anne Bernays

"Characters' Weaknesses Build Fictions Strengths" by Rosellen Brown

"How Can You Create Fiction When Reality Comes to Call?" by Caroyln Chute

"From Echoes Emerge Original Voices" by Nicholas Delbanco

"Quick Cuts: The Novel Follows Film into a World of Fewer Words" by E.L. Doctorow

'Two Languages in Mind, But Just One in the Heart" by Louise Erdrich

"Instant Novels? In Your Dreams!" by Thomas Fleming

"Goofing Off While the Muse Recharges" by Richard Ford

"A Novelist Breaches the Border to Nonfiction" by Gail Godwin

"Putting Pen to Paper, but Not Just Any Pen or Just Any Paper" by Mary Gordon

"To See Your Story Clearly, Start" by Pulling the Wool over Your Own Eyes" by Kent Haruf

"Real Life, That Bizarre And Brazen Plagiarist" by Carl Hiaasen

"Sustained" by Fiction While Facing Life's Facts" by Alice Hoffman

"The Enduring Commitment of a Faithful Storyteller" by Maureen Howard

"Inventing Life Steals Time, Living Life Begs It Back" by Gish Jen

"Pesky Themes Will Emerge When You're Not Looking" by Diane Johnson

"Sitting Down A Novelist, Getting Up A Playwright" by Ward Just

"Those Words That Echo... Echo... Echo Through Life" by Jamaica Kincaid

"A Forbidden Territory Familiar to All" by Barbara Kingsolver

"Summoning the Mystery and Tragedy, but in a Subterranean Way" by Hans Koning

"Comforting Lessons in Arranging Life's Details" by David Leavitt

"The Humble Genre Novel, Sometimes Full of Genius" by David Mame

"She Was Blond She Was in Trouble And She Paid 3 Cents a Word" by Ed McBain

"Virtual Reality: The Perils of Seeking a Novelist's Facts in Her Fiction" by Sue Miller

"For Authors, Fragile Ideas Need Loving Every Day" by Walter Mosley

"To Invigorate Literary Mind, Start Moving Literary Feet" by Joyce Carol Oates

"A Storyteller Stands Where Justice Confronts Basic Human Needs" by Sara Paretsky

"Life of Prose and Poetry: An Inspiring Combination" by Marge Piercy

"Inspiration? Head Down the Back Road, and Stop for the Yard Sales" by Annie Proulx

"If You Invent the Story, You're the First to See How It Ends" by Roxana Robinson

"Once Upon A Time, Literature Now What?" by James Salter

"Starting with a Tree and Finally Getting to the Death of a Brother" by William Saroyan

"Opting for Invention Over the Injury of Invasion" by Carol Shields

"A Reluctant Muse Embraces His Task, and Everything Changes" by Jane Smiley

"Directions: Write, Read, Rewrite Repeat Steps 2 and 3 as Needed" by Susan Sontag

"An Odyssey That Started With 'Ulysses'" by Scott Turow

"Questions of Character: There's No Ego as Wounded as a Wounded Alter Ego" by John Updike (as Henry Bech)

"Despite Tough Guys, Life Is Not the Only School for Real Novelists" by Kurt Vonnegut Jr

"Metta to Muriel and Other Marvels: A Poet's Experience of Meditation" by Alice Walker

"In the Castle of Indolence You Can Hear the Sound of Your Own Mind" by Paul West

'A Sacred Magic Can Elevate the Secular Storyteller" by Elie Wiesel

"Embarking Together on Solitary Journeys" by Hilma Wolitzer

Product Details

ISBN:
9780805067415
Subtitle:
Collected Essays from The New York Times
Introduction:
Darnton, John
Author:
The New York Times
Author:
Darnton, John
Publisher:
Times Books
Location:
New York
Subject:
Authorship
Subject:
General Literary Criticism & Collections
Subject:
Composition & Creative Writing
Edition Number:
1st ed.
Edition Description:
Times Books
Series:
Writers on Writing
Series Volume:
01
Publication Date:
20010501
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
256
Dimensions:
8.27 x 5.46 x 0.765 in

Related Subjects

Reference » Writing » General

Writers on Writing: Collected Essays from the New York Times
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details 256 pages Times Books/Henry Holt - English 9780805067415 Reviews:
"Review" by , "The essays...are all unified by an overwhelming sense of generosity of spirit, of writers offering encouragement, reflection, and introspection..."
"Review" by , "Darnton conceived of the idea while he was writing his first novel and struggling with matters of craft, art, and intent. He sensed that readers, many of whom wish they were writers, would enjoy reading about writers' lives, and his subsequent invitations to stellar literary talents to write about writing resulted in piquant, bracing, and virtuosic essays that are as much about life as they are about creativity."
"Review" by , "Unlike many assemblages of previously published works, this collection of 41 essays from the New York Times's "Writers on Writing" column is more than the sum of its parts. Just as Times culture editor Darnton hoped when he devised the series for writers to "talk about their craft," the result is a thoughtful examination of writers' concerns about the creative process and the place of literature in America. Appropriately for works commissioned for a major newspaper, the essays are immediately engaging and compelling all the way through....Overall, the writers' pensiveness and amity make for a thought-provoking yet reassuring read a good bedside book. Fans of writers-on-writing anthologies and close readers of the New York Times who may have bypassed these essays for the immediate payoff of a front-page headline should pause to enjoy this rich collection."
"Synopsis" by , Today's most celebrated writers explore literature and the literary life in an inspirational collection of original essays".Writers on Writing" brings together more than 40 of contemporary literature's finest voices, with essays by Russell Banks, Saul Bellow, E.L. Doctorow, Louise Erdrich, Richard Ford, Carl Hiaasen and more.
"Synopsis" by ,
Today's most celebrated writers explore literature and the literary life in an inspirational collection of original essays.

By turns poignant, practical, and hilarious, Writers on Writing brings together more than forty of contemporary literature's finest voices. Drawn from the distinguished New York Times column of the same name, it features essays by an extraordinary group of prizewinning and bestselling contributors.

The pieces range from reflections on the daily craft of writing to the intersection of art's and life's consequential moments. Authors discuss what impels them to write: creating a sense of control in a turbulent universe; bearing witness to events that would otherwise be lost in history or within the writer's soul; recapturing a fragment of time. Others praise mentors and lessons, whether from the classroom, daily circumstances, or the pages of a favorite writer. For anyone interested in the art and rewards of writing, Writers on Writing offers an uncommon and revealing view of a writer's world.

Contributors include Russell Banks, Saul Bellow, E. L. Doctorow, Louise Erdrich, Richard Ford, Carl Hiaasen, Jamaica Kincaid, Barbara Kingsolver, Sue Miller, Walter Mosley, Joyce Carol Oates, Marge Piercy, Annie Proulx, Carol Shields, Jane Smiley, John Updike, Kurt Vonnegut Jr., and Elie Wiesel.

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