Reading Like A Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and for Those Who Want to Write Them by Francine ProseReading Like A Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and for Those Who Want to Write Them by Francine Prose

Reading Like A Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and for Those Who Want to Write Them

byFrancine Prose

Paperback | April 10, 2007

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Long before there were creative-writing workshops and degrees, how did aspiring writers learn to write? By reading the work of their predecessors and contemporaries, says Francine Prose.

In Reading Like a Writer, Prose invites you to sit by her side and take a guided tour of the tools and the tricks of the masters. She reads the work of the very best writers&#8212Dostoyevsky, Flaubert, Kafka, Austen, Dickens, Woolf, Chekhov&#8212and discovers why their work has endured. She takes pleasure in the long and magnificent sentences of Philip Roth and the breathtaking paragraphs of Isaac Babel; she is deeply moved by the brilliant characterization in George Eliot's Middlemarch. She looks to John Le Carré for a lesson in how to advance plot through dialogue, to Flannery O'Connor for the cunning use of the telling detail, and to James Joyce and Katherine Mansfield for clever examples of how to employ gesture to create character. She cautions readers to slow down and pay attention to words, the raw material out of which literature is crafted.

Written with passion, humor, and wisdom, Reading Like a Writer will inspire readers to return to literature with a fresh eye and an eager heart.

Francine Prose is the author of sixteen books of fiction. Her novel A Changed Man won the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, and Blue Angel was a finalist for the National Book Award. Her most recent works of nonfiction include the highly acclaimed Anne Frank: The Book, The Life, The Afterlife, and the New York Times bestseller Reading Like ...
Title:Reading Like A Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and for Those Who Want to Write ThemFormat:PaperbackDimensions:320 pages, 8 × 5.31 × 0.72 inPublished:April 10, 2007Publisher:HarperCollinsLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0060777052

ISBN - 13:9780060777050


Rated 2 out of 5 by from Not the right fit for me. In all fairness, I want to write screenplays, and this is aimed at those wanting to write books. I will say it was on a recommended reading list for a creative writing program I took online. So it seems like a lot of people do find value in it. It just didn't really appeal to my interests. I did find some of the quotes interesting and wrote those down. But I personally didn't walk away from this book feeling like I really learned something really significant that will help me with my writing, personally.
Date published: 2018-07-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from An excellent teacher This is no quick-fix book that teaches you how to write. It feels more like a teacher who reads with you and guides you to look for the goodies in excellent writings, and so you know what to do when it comes your turn. The chapters on Dialogue, Details, and Gesture are especially interesting. I was so inspired by the chapter titled "Learning from Chekhov" that I could not wait to start reading Anton Chekhov, the master himself. Prose has done an excellent job not only in teaching us how to read and write great novels, but the valuable appreciation of the thoughts and care a good writer puts into their work.
Date published: 2007-12-16

Editorial Reviews

“Prose’s guide to reading and writing belongs on every writer’s bookshelf alongside E.M. Forster’s Aspects of the Novel.”