Thursday, 20 October 2011

On Writing by Stephen King

For any book lover - there is normally a list of authors they will rattle off as their favourites. The kind of author that would make you buy a book without even looking at the blurb - just because they wrote it. 

For me, there is only one - Stephen King is it. 

So when I learned that he had written a non-fiction book - part auto-biographical, part lesson on how to be a writer, I thought I had found my perfect book. And I did. It's so well regarded that even my teacher on a copy-editing course recommended it when learning about editing fiction.

The book is incredibly disjointed as King was the victim of a horrific car accident while writing the book. But in King style - it works. He writes with his own specific flair about his childhood, his family, his struggles, his successes. It's a glimpse rather than an extensive laborious look into his life - but what a glimpse.

And for the aspiring writers out there, he writes about his pet peeves, the common errors and what he has learned over the years with such humour and honesty. You never feel like you are being talked down to. He is trying to pass on the wisdom of his experience, that is all. And what experience it is.

For King fans, it's fantastic to see what gave him the idea for the infamous bathroom scene in Carrie, what Nurse Annie really represented in one of the worst times of his life and how writing can be therapeutic if you let it.

And if you are yet to experience the brilliance of Stephen King, I recommend Carrie, Bag of Bones and Misery to start...




  1. I completely agree - this is one of the top three best books on writing by writers I've ever come across. I have recommended it to countless people. But am somewhat daunted by the way he writes a book in 6 weeks, then puts it aside, does another then returns to it.

  2. I'm intrigued Nina... what are your other two? :)

  3. The Stand was his masterpiece.

    The autobiography section was, IMHO, the most interesting thing I had read in a long time.