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On Writing: Not a Memoir of the Craft
Plus a short book review of On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King
Stephen King has famously written 2,000 words per day. Everyday. I think he might take a day off here and there … maybe Christmas, I don’t know … but he’s a one-person publishing powerhouse. (Say that five times fast.) Anyone who writes that much is bound to be published, unless that person just doesn’t want to be published.
My problem: I don’t come anywhere near that amount everyday. Not even in a week. And tbh, sometimes even in a month.
Why? Well, I could come up with a ton of excuses [insert something about a deadline for work here]. But the truth is, I just don’t want to. I know I don’t want to because I don’t do it.
As the Nike slogan goes, Just Do It.
I got to imagining what my writing life would be like if I actually wrote 2,000 words per day. I’d be published! I’d win all sorts of awards! The Kid would finally say hello to me on her way out the door!
And then I realized maybe that’s the point of Nanowrimo. I was, like, duhhhh. It isn’t about finishing 50,000 words, or pretending that I’m Stephen King for a month. It’s about showing up, with my sneaks on. It’s about just doing it.
This week we have two giveaways for you. Check them out for some good reads.
A Short Book Review of On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King
5 out of 5 stars
Stephen King’s book On Writing is the quintessential guide for any author — aspiring or published. This book has many quotes floating around. For authors, this book is probably just as well known as his fictional books.
Like any book about the craft, it has tons of good information about writing in general, but the parts that I enjoyed the most were his writing habits, i.e. writing 2,000 words per day, everyday.
I enjoyed the memoir part second most. Mr. King starts off the book with the memoir, and it is approximately 50% of the book (e.g. the first half of the book). At times, it is poignant, funny, and stupid. But most of all, it was brutally honest. He was honest, not just to us (the reader), but also to himself.
The Shining, for example, was basically an autobiography with a horror twist. It’s also why a good majority of his protagonists are writers or teachers. In fact, I would attribute the “writer protagonist who is also an alcoholic” to be kind of a cliché, thanks largely to him.
However, most people don’t know that this is Stephen King’s second book about writing. His first was Danse Macabre, which is more like a literary journey into what makes horror, horror. He’s also written other stuff on the subject of writing, such as in the anthology Horror Writers Association’s On Writing Horror. (I think the name is intentionally a rip from Mr. King’s On Writing.)
A solid book. I highly recommend.
Hopefully by this time, I will be slogging away at Nanowrimo. Sorry everyone if this week’s newsletter is a bit shorter than normal. Writing three newsletters in two days took its (word) toll.
For those who are just joining me, the goal is to write 50,000 words in the month of November. That comes out to be 1,666 words per day, which means I still wouldn’t even write as much as Stephen King.
I queued up several recipes to publish in November in time for Thanksgiving. This week’s is grilled zucchini with feta and mint to use up those remnants of zukes from this year’s bounty.
One of the things I like about this recipe is that you can forgo the mint, and throw spaghetti sauce and mozzarella on top to make a kind of zucchini lasagna.
This is Aspen, saying hello to everyone. So beautiful!