Review: On writing, a memoir of the craft, Stephen King

A valuable classic, part of the canon. Not only an inspiring book, Stephen King wrote a surprising, scary and painful journey.

Review: On writing, a memoir of the craft, Stephen King
Stephen King, On writing, a memoir of the craft

Without a doubt, this was one of the most surprising and breathtaking books I ever read. It is totally unexpected and takes you down a personal tunnel that makes the messages about the writing stick even better. More I can't tell, otherwise I spoil the story.

Truly inspiring and a personal favourite

This book on writing is not directly related to marketing, but I read it when I was learning about storytelling. And I learned a lot from this book, but master King is a harsh teacher:

I am approaching the heart of this book with two theses, both simple. The first is that good writing consists of mastering the fundamentals (vocabulary, grammar, the elements of style) and then filling the third level of your toolbox with the right instruments. The second is that while it is impossible to make a competent writer out of a bad writer, and while it is equally impossible to make a great writer out of a good one, it is possible, with lots of hard work, dedication, and timely help, to make a good writer out of a merely competent one.

What King does in this book is to not offer a manual, but a story. He also gives concrete tips and rules, but more valuable is that in his book he takes you along in his work, his personal history and the way he sees his own talent and craft. That I found truly inspiring, and I highly recommend this book to everyone interested in the craft of writing.

And as mentioned this book will take you down a deep, surprising and to be honest a scary, painful journey.

The book, On Writing, on the website of Stephen King.

Writing tips from Stephen King

Does Stephen King then not give writing advice in this book? Yes, he does. And sometimes really straightforward, like rules and often as the implicit learning of a short story he tells.

I found this infographic and this gives you a head start.

14 writing tips by Stephen King.

The book was originally published in 2000 and the word processor was already replacing the typewriter. King talks about single-spaced pages a couple of times, and he uses it as a measure for progress or volume of work done. It inspired me to research a bit deeper into single-spaced fonts.