Book Review: On Writing

A few years ago someone suggested that I read Stephen King’s memoir entitled On Writing. It wasn’t until a few months ago that I finally managed to borrow a copy from a friend and read this book.

I’d read much of Mr. King’s earlier work. I had found him a master story teller, but a bit to macabre for my taste. I am really not into suspense of the really creepy factor. This book however was a complete departure from books like The Stand, Carrie, Needful Things, and IT. In it he told of his childhood and his early fascination with the telling of stories. Through his memoir one got a very clear idea of what it took for this man to become successful. It took patience, perseverance and a whole lot of rejections before success found Stephen King.

He tells us how he came up with some the ideas in his novels, which by themselves seem rather ordinary until set into the setting of Stephen King’s imagination.

Most of the last half of the book was geared towards the technical and business side of the craft of writing. He gave some excellent advice, and partway through gave the reader a writing prompt. That writing prompt was the germ of the idea that became an eventual short story for me. I will be following some of his advice in trying to get the story published.

I found the book informative and quite entertaining. I didn’t expect to discover that Stephen King had quite the sense of humor, or the depth of his devotion to his wife and children. I didn’t expect to learn so much about the process of writing. His personal point of view and experiences certainly helped me to get a better grasp how difficult writing can be, yet something we just have to do.

On Writing is a book for writers, by a great modern American writer. It is also a story about a man who had humble beginnings, struggles, setbacks and successes.I worked it out so I could keep the borrowed copy of this book for myself. It is one I will refer to again in the future. As I was told, anyone who wants to be serious about writing needs to read this book. I agree and would like to pass on that advice you.

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One Reply to “Book Review: On Writing”

  1. So glad you like it! We’ll have to get it on our Kindle so I can read it if I want to get into writing again on my own. Kyle always bragged about this book, and hearing it from you just solidifies its value.


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