Sep 15, 2011

Book Tour: Help! for Writers by Roy Peter Clark

This writer's manual is a good one for beginning writers and also for those who know about the writing process but who need a little nudging to get on their way.

Here's a taste of the book, tips on coping with writer's block ( from ch. 13):

Lower your standards at the beginning of the process. Raise them later.

Write for ten minutes as fast as you can - without stopping.

Tell the critical voice in your head to "shut up!"

If you are blocked in your usual writing place, try a new place.

The book takes you through seven steps of the writing process, (because writing is a process with a capital P). There are specific things you have to do at the beginning, the middle, and the end, such as finding a topic, getting focused, making a draft, and so on. The author lists the steps in the process, discussing them at length in eight sections: Get started/Get your act together/Find focus/Look for language/Build a draft/Assess you progress/Make it better

Each section is divided further into chapters and subsections that give tips for each step in the writing process. There are 210 writing tips in all.

I was particularly interested in writer's block and procrastination, in the section on Building a Draft. I like the down to earth, almost common sense approach to the subject. "Create a reliable, comfortable place to write." And, " Impose a deadline on yourself." Simple, but we all need reminders.

I found this a good manual to show writers the many things they can do to start, move forward, and get their writing done, and redone! It's easy to follow, and would you believe's also fun to read!

Title: Help for Writers: 210 Solutions to the Problems Every Writer Faces
Author: Roy Peter Clark
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company (2011), Hardcover, 304 pages
Objective rating: 4/5

An Advanced Readers Copy of this book was provided by Anna Balasi of Little, Brown and Company for this book tour. My rating was not influenced by my receiving a complimentary copy for review.


  1. I think this will be a useful resource for all writers out there :)

  2. I've added this to my wishlist. Thank you.

  3. I love books like this. I need to be inspired every once in a while and this looks like one that could do that!


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