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A Writer's Paris: A Guided Journey For The Creative Soul
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A Writer's Paris: A Guided Journey For The Creative Soul

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  149 ratings  ·  39 reviews
Enrich your creative life and write with more intensity than ever before on a spirit-renewing adventure in the City of Light. Experience it not as a tourist but as a creator, where you dedicate yourself to the bohemian writing life in picturesque parks, cafes, and bookstores.

Writers and other creative souls will be captivated by the metaphor and reality of Paris as the art
Paperback, 213 pages
Published October 5th 2005 by Writer's Digest Books (first published 2005)
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Average rating 4.08  · 
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Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Every writer’s dream is to travel to Paris and write.

How do you do that?

Eric Maisel shares his secrets. He proposes three daily writing sessions of two hours each. Take the bad with the good, he says, just like scooping rather than hand selecting apricots. Go to the Musee d’Orsay when it opens and write in the silence. Stroll everywhere. How much French do you really need? You’d need a lot to translate Finnegans Wake into French, but almost none to order a cup of coffee, and absolutely none to
Jan 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Truly an enjoyable read! Maisel encourages all writers to take a sabbatical in Paris. He makes everything look so easy, that it makes you think- "I can do that." He points out that you could start today just by going out every morning to write in a Panera in your town or to a Park in another town. In the end, Maisel states that by using this writing process routine, that writers will be able to create more and will write better. There are many references on how one would begin the process of liv ...more
Nov 28, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: paris, writing
filled with observations about the city and encouragement to devote time to your writing by going to Paris
Sep 11, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: writingbooks
I loved this book. I asked for it for Christmas because I thought it was going to be a guidebook. (And I’m going to be in Paris in May!)

Well. It is in a way, but it’s also a kind of magical book about writing. The very sort of thing that appeals to me. It asks for upping my commitment to writing. That’s the best thing I took away from The Artists’ Way, the challenge to challeng myself. (Which led me to join a writing group, go to a writer’s conference, become a PEN Emerging Voices fellow, help c
Nov 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
Paris has never been in my top three places I want to see before I die, and this book didn't change that. It did however manage to make the city sound more interesting, especially to the artist, that I would have found it to be on my own.

Not that Paris is always Paris in this book. Though at time very much a travelogue of sorts, the author makes it clear throughout the book that the lessons of Paris can be almost as invigorating to the writing life as can literally visiting the city. In that reg
Jamie Jack
Sep 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction, p-2019
The City of Lights from a Writer’s Perspective

What an unusual and delightful book! I'm been finding it hard to describe precisely. The author is a writer who has spent time writing his books in Paris, and this book is meant to encourage other authors to make a similar pilgrimage for their art. He is very specific about places to go, sometimes just to appreciate the place and sometimes to inspire writing. It's broken down into 34 lessons, which are bite-sized nuggets about writing, Paris, or some
May 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I have had this book on my shelf for years, waiting for the right time to pick it up. It was given to my husband and me before our first trip to Paris. Neither of us read it then, but I just felt like now was a good time since we have had to cancel our current (and fourth) Paris trip due to COVID-19. Would this short book substitute for a trip to Paris? Actually, it was a fun way to virtually visit one of my favorite places. And to make plans for the next trip. In some ways it's a "how-to write" ...more
Warren Ward
Jan 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A writing friend recommended this to me for my recent self-arranged writing residency in Paris and it was perfect. Bite-sized pieces that I could read each day for inspiration about places/things/attitudes to get me in right frame of mind for creating. And it had a very important message which I heeded - to write in Paris you have to sit on your bum for many hours and write! The writing won't just appear from endlessly swanning around Paris's glorious streets, although I made sure i did a bit of ...more
May 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: writing, travel
I thoroughly enjoyed this charming book, with its can-do spirit, sense of adventure, and heartfelt encouragement to embrace the writing life, whether in Paris or Pittsburgh (or your kitchen table). Maisel has a generous soul, and it shines from these beautifully illustrated pages. I felt inspired after reading it.
Louisa Deasey
Aug 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Lovely, comforting, elegant little book - I read it before a trip to Paris, but it's as much about the delights of the writing life as well. ...more
Bea Elwood
Aug 07, 2018 rated it it was ok
Danny's illustrations are the best part. The first 20 pages had been inspiring but then it was whiny and self-indulgent. ...more
Mark Martella
Jun 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: purchased
The following is a letter that I sent to the author upon completing this book, I wrote i on a plane the minute i put the book down.

Dear Mr Maisel,

I just finished reading your bool entitled "A Writer's Paris".

I found this book in a sleepy little bookshop in Tasmania Australia. I had never herd of it or seen it recommended. I read it cover to cover the minute i first opened it. I have also hand written down my favourite paragraphs, quotes and thoughts into my own inspiration notebook.

I recently qu
Sep 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. Truly loved it. It is as much about Paris as writing and I saw myself echoed so much on its' pages. A gem, a treasure and I will savor this over and over. ...more
Feb 17, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: france
I didn't remember that I had already read this, although I did think that here and there he had copied from someone else, only I couldn't think of who. Now I know why those parts were familiar.

Well, on second reading, seven years later, it doesn't make that great an impression. I think this is one of those small books that are thin on information or ideas. If you want to know what he says to do in order to write in Paris, find an apartment/studio, write three times a day. There you have it. He s
Dec 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Paris is a golden opportunity to make messes. It is the perfect place to write the pitiful along with the wonderful, the short story from hell that becomes the short story from heaven, the screenplay with no plot that becomes the epitome of muscled narrative. Forget about masterpieces! Just come ready to write. Come with ideas, hope, and a genuine willingness to take the bad with the good."

It is a rare treat to read a book that feels like it was written just for you. I stumbled into the Red Whe
Mia Parviainen
Apr 12, 2013 rated it liked it
I bought this book at the dollar store and read it in two days. I was hoping that it would contain some interesting writing advice that I could use for my own work and while teaching creative writing. It didn't.

The premise of the book is about how to go to Paris for the sake of writing. How to save money, to plan, to pace, to eat, to occupy cafe tables. So, honestly, if your dream is to go to Paris like an expat of the 1920s, drink coffee and nibble on a croissant, this book might be helpful. It
Faye Powell
May 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2014
Just write, the author says, no matter where you are, but then why not do it in Paris once in awhile, where there are all sorts of delightful places to get your writing groove on? You don't need to be a writer to enjoy this book, but reading it may make you want to travel like one. Maisel urges the writer to forego the major tourist sites in favor of the small cafes, parks, bridges and other everyday places that make excellent places to write. And when not writing, "Stroll everywhere." Be a flan ...more
Amy Moritz
Apr 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
I saw a number of reviews expressing disappointment in the book. The reasons varied but it almost always was because it didn't live up to the expectations of that reader. Hence the joy of entering a book because it "sounds good" without looking for anything specific from it. I loved this book because it was beautiful and simple and yet challenged me to be s writer. Did it make me want to go to Paris? Of course. Did it make me want to recommit to my own writing? You bet! More than that, it gave m ...more
Jun 18, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: paris-france
I never had thought about going to Paris specifically to write and have had no real plans for writing a novel, which is what A Writer's Paris is about. Part 'how to' book, part cheerleading and part guide to Paris, it was interesting enough to finish even though I have no plans to write a novel or anything else in Paris. If I do get to Paris, I am going to let myself be distracted by all that the city has to offer. I would not, however, discourage anyone from reading this book. Someone else migh ...more
Elsa Christine
May 13, 2009 rated it really liked it
A dear friend gave this book to me as a birthday present - and it simply got me fly away.. to Paris! A guided journey for the creative soul - stated in the cover - and literally guides me from pages to pages on how to transform what I've seen into describing it, taking others to 'see' it too, to smell, hear, taste, and feel.. One insightful sentence here: 'when your character drops a coin, your readers should be able to hear it..'

Highly recommended - a feast for your mind!
Shelby Harper
Apr 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I just reread this gem of a book, discovering more meaning about life and writing than I did in my first read. Maisel discusses inspiration, writer's block, the importance of strolling, and even lays out a plan how you can arrange your life so that you can write in Paris for six months or even a year! I love this book because it is beautiful and nurturing to the person committed to the (sometimes) solitary act of writing. ...more
This is one of my favorite re-reads. It inspired me to look for writing and studying opportunities overseas and led to my spending a month in Dublin, Ireland a couple of years ago. Next summer, I'm aiming to take Maisel's words on a more literal level and spend July in Paris at a creative writing course! Delightful little book--even if you don't go to Paris! The same principles can be used in your own neighborhood! ...more
Aug 08, 2012 rated it did not like it
A pretty, stupid, or shall I say, a pretty stupid book, with insipid texts about writing in Paris. On the positive side, the presentation is exquisite: linen covered outer cover, thick, pleasing to the touch, semi-glossy paper, old-fashioned B&W photos, collages (by Claudine Hellmuth), moody sketches (by Dan Gregory). The problem with this book is the text: The useful stuff would fit a mere three of this waste of 214 pages.
Sep 01, 2008 rated it liked it
Not what I expected. This book is REALLY about going to Paris to write. Guess I was looking for more of an inspirational writer's book. Since I'm not about to pack my bags and go to Paris to write for a few months, I didn't get much out of this book. But it WAS interesting. And I do enjoy reading Eric Maisel's writer books normally. ...more
Aug 11, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
This book has more to do with the hard work of finding a purpose and fulfilling it than with writing or Paris. I like how it all weaves together, and the design junkie in me is pretty gaga over the exterior at least. This is something I'll come back to when my writing or any other creative work needs an injection. ...more
May 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction, french
This was a fun travel book for writers that is by no means a traditional run down of the tourist things to do. It was just want I wanted in talking about strolling, searching for gargoyles and the world's oldest square. I was first attracted to this book's interesting mix of old photos, collage, and clip art. Artfully arranged. ...more
Mar 15, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I read this book in little bits at a time. Each time I read a bit I was inspired to write my own fiction. I love this book. I have since picked up several other books by Eric Maisel. This one will be my favorite. I will read it again and again.
Cindy Lofgren
Jul 25, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: travel
I'm no writer (nor aspiring to be) but I thought I could find nuggets of info and find some new haunts in Paris. I got a few and he has some great links in the back resource section. Other than that, the author is kind of pompous and really makes no sense at all in several sections. ...more
Mar 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing

Not supposed to be but is a great travel book. What a way to explore Paris without all the tourist bolderdash.
Plus it generates enough creative juice to get you going. Always liked his ideas on generating
creativity and writing.
A favorite book on my bookshelf.

Jennifer Bacall
May 31, 2015 rated it liked it
I was hoping for more in both the writing and travel portions but the author dwells in reverie which distracts from both. Some chapters repeat material presented earlier in the text. Although the book is beautiful in design, layout and language it serves more as a folly than as a guide.
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Eric Maisel, Ph.D., is the author of more than 40 books in the areas of creativity, coaching, mental health, and cultural trends. He is a psychotherapist and creativity coach, and writes for Psychology Today and Professional Artist Magazine and presents workshops internationally.

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