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On Writing

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4.33  ·  Rating details ·  224,789 ratings  ·  17,748 reviews
Copy-edited by Esti Ayu Budihabsari

Dia telah melewati masa kecil dalam kemiskinan dan hari-hari melelahkan sebagai pekerja kerah biru, melepaskan diri dari jeratan alkohol dan narkotika, lalu bangkit dari kecelakaan lalu lintas yang hampir merenggut nyawanya. Di tengah semuanya, dia tetap menulis. Dialah Stephen King. Sang raja cerita horor dan thriller dengan puluhan kary
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Paperback, 416 pages
Published September 2005 by Penerbit Qanita (first published 2000)
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Kat Kirst There were so many things: Tell the story. Let the Characters evolve within the story and see where it all goes. Hit all the readers' senses-let them …moreThere were so many things: Tell the story. Let the Characters evolve within the story and see where it all goes. Hit all the readers' senses-let them see, smell, hear, feel and taste the story. Let them identify with it- don't tell them everything. Watch your basics; use your tools. Read Elements of Style. Beware of passive tense unless you mean to use it. Be wary of too much description including adjectives and adverbs. Be committed. Practice. Read. Practice. Be true to your craft, the characters, and the story. Put part of what you know in your MS, and make the rest up. See it. Feel it. Write it. Did I mention practice?(less)
Jaime Totally agree about the digital prices being too high, but at the end of the day it is down to the publisher in terms of pricing.

They will maximize t…more
Totally agree about the digital prices being too high, but at the end of the day it is down to the publisher in terms of pricing.

They will maximize their profits where they are able.

All things being equal I prefer the physical books but digital makes it a lot easier to carry around a library in your pocket.(less)

Community Reviews

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Average rating 4.33  · 
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Jeffrey Keeten
”Writing isn’t about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end, it’s about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life, as well. It’s about getting up, getting well, and getting over. Getting happy okay? Getting happy.”

I can’t tell you how many people I’ve talked to over my lifetime who wanted to write a book. Most didn’t know what they wanted to write about, but some of them wanted to write their autobiography
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Jayson
(A) 87% | Extraordinary
Notes: The first novel-length book I'd ever finished over the span of one day. Done over two sittings, with a nap in between.
Madeline
Nov 28, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir
Let's be honest: Stephen King is not one of the greatest writers of all time. He will never win a Pulitzer or a Nobel (he might win a Newberry though, if he ever decides to tap into the Kids/Young Adult market), and on the few times his books are featured in the New York Times Book Review, the reviewer will treat the book with a sort of haughty disdain, knowing their time could be better spent trashing Joyce Carol Oates.

None of this should suggest, however, that King is not qualified to write a
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Ariel
Nov 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourites
There's this magic thing that happens sometimes: I can't wait to reread a book I haven't even finished yet. It's a rare feeling, but one that happens whenever I'm in the midst of a new favourite book. I'm reading these amazing scenes, freaking out over fantastic passages, and already looking forward to the second time I'll read them, when they'll be even clearer and start to feel familiar.

It's a rare occurrence, it only happens a few times a year, but it happened with On Writing. The moment it s
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Wil Wheaton
Jan 02, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010-project
I know it's like saying "puppies are cute," but it bears repeating: everyone who wants to write, whether for a living or not, simply must read this book.

On Writing did more for me as a writer than anything, and any success I've found as a storyteller can be traced to my reading it.
Fabian
Jun 22, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So it's become very clear to me now that very few writers actually write about the craft. The only Latin American writer to do so? Mario Vargas Llosa (who took several years off of his busy novel-writing to write about his now-ex-pal Gabriel Garcia Marquez). But I suddenly forgot who the King was (no, I mean literally: I've not read him in years! High school being the prime time for Stephen King, & all): the guy has useful insight, no shit, because he is not only prolific & uber-successful (he g ...more
Glenn Russell


On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft - Superb, absolutely superb. I've listened to Stephen King read his audio book three times. I can't recommend highly enough.

Since I'm on the cusp of posting 1,000 reviews here on Goodreads, I'd like to share my own thoughts on writing book reviews and link my reflections with Stephen King's wisdom on the craft of writing.

“You cannot hope to sweep someone else away by the force of your writing until it has been done to you.” ----------- I recall back when I was
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Jenny (Reading Envy)
Dec 17, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Any aspiring writer
Shelves: read07, writing, favorites
I read this shortly after finishing NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) this year, actually it would be more accurate to say I devoured it. This is full of great writing advice, and I'll need to get a copy and read it 1-2 times a year. Most helpful? The section on grammar! Seriously, I never really learned grammar.
"Gould said something else that was interesting on the day I turned in my first two pieces: write with the door closed, rewrite with the door open. Your stuff starts out being jus
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Riku Sayuj
Aug 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The book is great and if you like writing, it is probably a must read.

I could write a summary of the book, it is easy enough to summarize and there are only a few important points that King presents, but then I dont want you to get it for free. :) Go and read the book yourself, it is worth it.

Rude? As King says, "...if you expect to succeed as a writer, rudeness should be the second-to-least of your concerns. The least of all should be polite society and what it expects. If you intend to write
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Cecily
description

Like the curate’s egg, this is good in parts. I can see why writers, and budding writers find this book inspirational, and fans of his oeuvre will enjoy learning how certain stories came to be. But it’s several very different books and booklets, within a single set of covers - curious that a book about writing doesn't seem to know what sort of a book it is.

In one of the three forewords, King says “Most books about writing are filled with bullshit”. I found a fair bit here, too. But I also found
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Joe Valdez
Jan 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoirs
January 6, 2018 review

I'm kicking off my fifth year on Goodreads with a re-read of the best book about writing that I've read to date. I've considered that On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft--Stephen King's contribution to the crowded field of How To Write a Novel, published in 2000--might hold this slot due to King being one of my favorite living authors. Ball players can tune out a coach who never made it in the pros quicker than a guy who did and was a superstar to boot, and I'm certainly more
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Dan Schwent
Feb 07, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016, 2016-books, nf
Stephen King shares some stories of his past and some writing tips.

This was either my fourth or fifth time reading this. I got it for Christmas around the turn of the century and I've buzz-sawed through it a few times before. The first time, I was just cutting my writing teeth. Now, with seven or eight first drafts of novels lying around, I came to the book with a completely different perspective.

Most books about writing, as I've said before, are by people I've never heard of, and are akin to a
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Leonard Gaya
Apr 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Stephen King — along with Jo Rowling and a handful other novelists —, is one of the most successful writers of our time (at least in commercially), with bestsellers such as The Shining, It or Misery. One might wonder if there is some sort of magic formula he is using to write his books. The secret, of course, is that there is no secret. This book, however, is an invitation behind the scenes of the author's work and career and a masterclass for aspiring writers.

The firsts section is about King's
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Johann (jobis89)
Nov 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
"Books are a uniquely portable magic."

This book blew my mind!!! I mean, I knew I loved Stephen King and I already knew a lot of the things you learn in this book, but to read it in his own words is even better!

The biographical part of the book was truly amazing, this man has come through so much, whether it's alcoholism, the drug addiction or the accident which nearly killed him. And he's so humble and honest about all of these things. And it just makes me admire him even more.

As for the actual
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Ahmad Sharabiani
On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft, Stephen King

This superb volume is a revealing and practical view of the writer's craft, comprising the basic tools of the trade every writer must have. King's advice is grounded in his vivid memories from childhood through his emergence as a writer, from his struggling early career to his widely reported near-fatal accident in 1999 -- and how the inextricable link between writing and living spurred his recovery. Brilliantly structured, friendly and inspiring, O
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Grace (BURTSBOOKS)
There is NO ONE I trust more than Stephen King when it comes to writing
Elyse  Walters
Jun 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Audiobook.... Steven King
Thoroughly enjoyable...
with Stephen King

A *FEW* KEY POINTS -and suggestions from ‘The King’......
....Narrative, description, and dialogue!!! [three essentials]

....Be honest [I certainly try]

....READ .... for a few minutes
at a time ... or for 4 and 5 hour stretches, daily. [ I do this].

....Health and Family are important to ‘King’ [I like this man]

....Turn off the TV [I’m watching Poldark right now - exceptions must be made]

....WRITE at least a thousand words a day, if
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Tom Lewis
Jul 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
For anyone who’s a Stephen King fan or aspiring writer, this should be a must-have. I listened to the Audible that’s read by King, and I highly recommend it. King’s as good of a storyteller vocally as he is on paper. The breakdown of the book goes like this – the first third is about his background, and what lead him to writing. The middle third is about the mechanics of writing, and for me it was more informative than any college course. He discusses “voice,” and themes, and story, and dialogue ...more
Hannah Greendale
On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft offers an illuminating look at Stephen King's life, highlighting moments that shaped him as an author and revealing lessons he gained from decades of practice and publication.

King is unapologetically himself, blending whit and honesty with sophomoric humor and the occasional curse word. For example, when discussing the sin of using passive voice, King provides an example of how not to construct a sentence, followed by the type of commentary one can expect to fi
...more
Lizzy
Sep 03, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's rare to find an author that adventures into writing about his craft, but Stephen King, with On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft, is not one of them. Great book: good tips (best one: write something you would want to read!) on how to write along with a nice memoir. Recommended. ...more
Cristina Monica
Jan 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir, writing
In hindsight, it wasn’t such a good idea to make this my first Stephen King book. It has kindled in my heart a deep interest in many of his novels… but spoiled me for a couple he discussed in detail. Regardless, I appreciated his thoughts on writing and what made him a writer. Also, I loved how often he mentioned his wife. Any chance he got, really. Cute.
Robin
May 30, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: writers in need of encouragement
I'm a fan of Stephen King's earlier works and a lot of the classic movie adaptations. I wouldn't say I'm a superfan, but since I am working on changing my status of aspiring writer to published author, I can use all the help I can get, especially from someone as prolific and universally read as he.

We all know King is a master storyteller. So it's not surprising that for much of this book, he's doing just that. The first big chunk of this book is his "C.V." - a charming memoir of his childhood wh
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Andrew Smith
This is very much a book of three parts. In the first section, King provides a series of anecdotes that seem somewhat fractured and random. They loosely cover his early years, the time before he became a successful writer. Some of the tales are a little spooky, to be honest. Others clearly portray what it was like for him, his wife and his children when he was spending long hours writing whilst also holding down a day job. He had a number of jobs, some pretty menial, but he eventually settled in ...more
Jason Koivu
Jun 16, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, writing
On Writing is for me hands-down the best book I've read about the craft of writing and living the life of a writer by a writer.

This is not a textbook on grammar and sentence structure. No, the subtitle very succinctly describes the contents. This is about Stephen King's journey to become a published author and his experiences in wrestling with words.

To hear stories about how one of the world's most popular authors once upon a time struggled just like the rest of us mortals is refreshing. Those
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J. Kent Messum
There are countless books out there on writing, storytelling, screenwriting, style, etc. A lot of them are too formulaic and more than a bit bloody cliche. To be honest, the majority usually prove to be a waste of time. But there are a few that are great, and 'On Writing' is definitely one of them. Stephen King is a household name, no doubt, but of all Mr. King’s books, this is the one I praise the most. Part biography, part ‘How-to’ manual, this book is a must-read for anyone and everyone.

Ther
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C.
Mar 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: before-2012
On Writing: A Memoir Of The Craft” is one of my favourite books: an easy five stars! This was my birthday gift from my youngest brother about fifteen years ago and in 2009, I read it. I knew a writer's manual would be ideal for me. The combination of Stephen King’s autobiography and excellent writing advice are stellar!

An update no one would want, occurred partway through this instructional hybrid. Stephen survived a severe accident, as a pedestrian! When he resumed this book, he added that acc
...more
Rebecca McNutt
Some people idolize Stephen King, others say his work is dreadfully overhyped, but love him or loathe him, it can't be denied that's he's a very successful writer. While his books are often formulaic and full of tropes, their interconnected universe, the human truth beneath the fiction and his ability to capture the uglier side of modern America, King knows what sells, but more importantly, he also knows what America fears most of all. On Writing is the book which looks into how King writes, but ...more
David Putnam
Nov 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of my favorite books on writing and I've read it several times. Since it's also a well written memoir the structure as presented becomes an easy way to learn the art of writing. At the back of the book is a section he shows how he edits some of his own work. He also describes what happened when the van struck him while he walked on the side of the road. Absolutely chilling.
This book is a great insight into a brilliant craftsman, one of the best writer's of our time. I highly recomme
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Diane
This book on writing was even better than I expected. I loved that Stephen King shared some memories from childhood and explained how he became a writer.

This book helped me knock off two goals in one: I've been trying to read the best Stephen King books (good grief, the man is prolific) and I'm trying to read more books about writing. King has good advice on ways to improve your writing, but he also has some knockout stories about his life and how they've influenced his novels.

The book ends wi
...more
Lou
This is a must read for writers, readers and Stephen King fans.
Fully laden with inspiration to walk the walk and start that journey of writing a story of you're own from short story to a full novel. Imagine great writers of the past like Dickens around to give advice to aspiring writers it's a real opportunity to grasp.

This man, Stephen King, worked hard to make himself into a writer and had sheer determination, from working all hours to pay his college education to writing his first stories i
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Are You A Writer? 84 134 Jun 30, 2019 02:17PM  

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750,437 followers
Stephen Edwin King was born the second son of Donald and Nellie Ruth Pillsbury King. After his father left them when Stephen was two, he and his older brother, David, were raised by his mother. Parts of his childhood were spent in Fort Wayne, Indiana, where his father's family was at the time, and in Stratford, Connecticut. When Stephen was eleven, his mother brought her children back to Durham, M ...more

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