Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Outwitting Writer's Block and Other Problems of the Pen

Author: Jenna Glatzer
Published: 2003
Publisher: The Lyons Press

Over the last 16 years my writing skills have been confined to preparing power point presentations and process documents. Ever since I joined the Toastmasters club last September, I have to write out my speeches before delivering them. I have also started blogging recently, writing book reviews in my blog. I also hope to write a book someday . On what ? Yet to decide ! I am sure this book which I picked up at Strand Book Festival at a bargain price of Rs. 175 ($3.5 vs the marked price of $14.95) will stand me in good stead in my writing ventures.

The book contains lots of tips and techniques for overcoming the writer's block. Just to enumerate a few - planning your writing, letting the ideas percolate, dealing with self-doubt and self-criticism of your writing, training your brain to write, relaxing, dealing with deadlines etc.

One technique among several others mentioned in the book that I can definitely vouch for by my experience is writing your draft on an ugly cheap notebook (real rough note book !) . Elegant and high priced notebooks makes you think that you have to write neatly and correctly. You don't feel like dirtying it with your scribblings. And that leads to the writer's block !
I need to try out other techniques. They seem doable.

The book is written in a conversational manner with lots of humor. It is pretty light read in that way , if you are interested in the subject of the book.

I only wish that all the tips and techniques were summarized in an appendix. Such an appendix would have made this review of mine even better. I really wanted to extract some good tips and put it here, but the absence of such an appendix made my job difficult. So I gave up the idea.

Nevertheless a must read for both a newbie and an experienced writer.

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