Kirstie's Reviews > On Writing: A Memoir

On Writing by Stephen King
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it was amazing
bookshelves: non-fiction
Read 2 times. Last read February 26, 2019 to February 27, 2019.

This book is a thrilling mix of autobiography and writing guide with the added bonus of the tale of when he was struck by a car on the roadside and his resulting recovery. The edition I read also included a short story at the end, written by the winner of a competition held in the book’s honour.

King reveals his childhood and life pre-accident in snippets, all pertaining in some way to writing and how his own personal style developed. This alone is intriguing enough to justify the cover purchase. I was delighted to discover he also only recalls snippets of his childhood – I could never remember huge chunks of mine either, like so many other people do.

The writing text is handy, giving the basics (such as ‘get thee out foul adverb!’) of writing and detailing King’s own creative process. King also offers a method for finding an agent (and cautions on scammers) and wraps up by offering a snippet of the first draft of ‘1408’ and its subsequent revision to aid writers in their revision. The writing instructions aren’t like what you would read in most other ‘how-to-write’ books. It reads more like advice from an old (and wiser) friend, peppered with King’s own wit and opinions.

The tale of King’s encounter with a blue Dodge on a road in Maine is detailed and the horror lies in those details, such as the calmness of the driver.

All up the book is interesting and informative. Even those who are not interested in learning how to write could easily read this book (skipping the middle part on writing if they desired) and enjoy King’s personal tales.

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Reading Progress

June 25, 2012 – Started Reading
June 25, 2012 – Shelved
June 25, 2012 – Shelved as: non-fiction
June 26, 2012 – Finished Reading
February 26, 2019 – Started Reading
February 27, 2019 – Finished Reading

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