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This handbook is the perfect reference for beginning creative writers. It offers abundant illustrations, exercises, and useful techniques in all genres. While emphasizing problem-solving and the mastery of literary conventions, this handbook also takes the apprentice writer on a journey from inspiration to revision.
Teaches beginning writers to tap and shape their creative energies. Introductory chapters discuss a writer's motivations, journal keeping, point of view, language, and the relationship of invention and research. Subsequent sections address individual genres such as poetry, fiction and nonfiction prose, and drama, and discuss the business of writing. Numerous examples in the text include stories by Joyce, Hemingway, and Salman Rushdie, among others, and more than 30 poems. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
In this edition we have given more attention to the interrelationships among genres. Though techniques of character development or dialogue may appear irrelevant to writing poetry or nonfiction, they are not. Nor are the techniques of sound patterns beside the point when one comes to write a play or a story. As we tell students in our workshops, what makes writing both fascinating and difficult is the fact that everything counts.
Almost everywhere, we have added and replaced examples, expanded sections, deleted some material and added other material. We have tried to make the book more readable, and we have added tools like the "scam sheet" and "Proofreading Check List" in Chapter 16. Chapter 2 has new material on the journal as a literary form. Chapter 4 includes an enhanced discussion of style. Chapter 5 attends more fully to electronic research. We have added new stories to Chapter 12 as well as a creative nonfiction essay that is not a memoir. In Chapter 15, two ten-minute plays have replaced Trifles because we felt shorter plays would be more helpful models for beginning writers. We have deleted and added exercises. In short, we have tried to do what a revision ought to do.
If you are coming to The Creative Writer's Handbook for the first time, you may be overwhelmed by both the amount of detail and the number of questions we ask you to consider as well as the sizeable number of exercises. Don't be. Our idea was to provide you with a smorgasbord from which to choose what tempts your palate.
We wish to thank the following reviewers for their valuable contribution: Joan Connor, Ohis University, and Juliet W. Kincaid, Johnson County Community College.
We want to stress again that this book is about useful techniques for the beginner. No book teaches; practice does.
Finally, we want to thank those students, colleagues, and friends who have helped us to improve the work.
Overwriting, ~ Overmodification, ~ Saying It Twice,~ Excessive Variation ~, Latinate Diction, ~ Archaic Diction ~, Sonic Boom ~, Passives and Operators,
Figures of Speech
Evoking Styles ~ Incompatible Styles ~ A Style Checklist
Part II The Concerns of the Poet
Typical submission for a poem
5 The Elements of Poetry
The Nature of Poetry ~ The Line ~ The Line and Meter ~ Lines and Rhymes
The Line and Free Verse ~ Lines in Combination ~ Imagery ~ Sound Patterns ~
6 Practicing Poetry
Imitation ~ Fixed forms ~ Memory Poem ~ Formula Poems ~ Ritual Poems ~ List Poems ~ Dramatic Poems/Character Poems ~ Event Poems ~ Personification Poems ~ Epistolary Poems ~ Time Warp Poems ~ Advice Poems ~ Picture Poems ~ Music Poems ~ Poems on Poems ~ Found Poems 154
7 Poetry Problems
Out of Tune ~ Archaic Diction ~ The Anonymous Voice ~ Appalling Abstraction ~ Unintentional Humor ~ Jarring Diction ~ For the Sake of Rhyme ~ The Clash of Poetic Elements ~ Writing Past the Poem ~ Treasure Burying ~ Saying Too Much ~ The False Start ~ Punch-Line Endings ~ Ineffective Line Break ~ Out of Order ~ Derivative Drivel
Part III The Concerns of the Storyteller
Typical submission page for prose
8 The Elements of Fiction
The Nature of Fiction
Plot and What It Does
Point of Attack
Character and Characterization
Action, ~ Appearance, ~ Thought ~ Dialogue, ~ Indirect Discourse,
~ Other Means, ~ Functionaries and Stock Characters ~ Naming Character ~ The
Characters ~ Presenting Character ~ Characters in Place and Time ~ Setting
13 Dialogue and Its Problems 311
Dialogue: The Essence of Drama
Principles and Common Errors
Your Exposition Is Showing, ~ Contractions and Formality, ~ Interruptions and Other Ways of Creating Verisimilitude, ~ Fake Dialogue or the Dialogue Dummy, ~ Designators, or Stealing the Actors’ and Director’s Jobs, ~ Long Speeches, ~