I’d heard this is an excellent book, and I finally got around to reading it. I agree; it is superb. Two-parts short autobiography with a third segment containing succinct writing advice (inserted between the other two parts), the book is intimate, engaging, inviting, humble and encouraging. I read it within a couple of days and probably would have slurped it all up in one sitting if I’d had the time.

King takes readers in, as though conversing with a group of friends, shares what shaped him as a writer, much of his writing practice, and thoughts on what makes for good writing and how to do it. A couple of ideas that stuck with me are that the material chooses you, not the other way around, and it’s a good idea to begin a story by putting some characters in a situation and seeing what happens rather than plotting the story out beforehand. If you read this book, I believe you’ll emerge as a Stephen King fan, even if you don’t have a penchant for his genre.

As I closed the book, I had the feeling that he fully deserves the smashing success he’s had in his career.

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