Help! For Writers: 210 Solutions to the Problems Every Writer Faces

Help! For Writers: 210 Solutions to the Problems Every Writer Faces

by Roy Peter Clark
Help! For Writers: 210 Solutions to the Problems Every Writer Faces

Help! For Writers: 210 Solutions to the Problems Every Writer Faces

by Roy Peter Clark


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The craft of writing offers countless potential problems: The story is too long; the story's too short; revising presents a huge hurdle; writer's block is rearing its ugly head.

In Help! For Writers, Roy Peter Clark presents an "owner's manual" for writers, outlining the seven steps of the writing process, and addressing the 21 most urgent problems that writers face. In his trademark engaging and entertaining style, Clark offers ten short solutions to each problem. Out of ideas? Read posters, billboards, and graffiti. Can't bear to edit yourself? Watch the deleted scenes feature of a DVD, and ask yourself why those scenes were left on the cutting-room floor. Help! For Writers offers 210 strategies to guide writers to success.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780316126700
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Publication date: 01/01/2013
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 981,978
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Roy Peter Clark is senior scholar at the Poynter Institute, one of the most prestigious schools for journalists in the world. He has taught writing at every level -- from schoolchildren to Pulitzer Prize-winning authors -- for more than forty years.

A writer who teaches and a teacher who writes, he has authored or edited nineteen books on writing and journalism, including The Art of X-Ray Reading, How to Write Short, Writing Tools, The Glamour of Grammar, and Help! for Writers. He lives in St. Petersburg, Florida, where he is considered a garage-band legend.

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Seven Steps of the Writing Process 3

How to Get Help! 9

Step 1 Getting Started 11

1 I can't think of anything to write 17

2 I hate writing assignments and other people's ideas 28

3 I have trouble doing all the research 38

Step 2 Getting Your Act Together 49

4 My work habits are so disorganized 55

5 I can never find what I need when I need it 66

6 I have too much material to handle 75

Step 3 Finding Focus 87

7 I don't know what my story is really about 93

8 I struggle with the beginning 104

9 I have problems selecting my best stuff 119

Step 4 Looking for Language 129

10 My vocabulary is so limited 135

11 My early drafts are littered with clichés 146

12 My words don't make things clear 156

Step 5 Building a Draft 167

13 I am totally blocked 173

14 I can't stop procrastinating 184

15 I have trouble working from a plan 194

Step 6 Assessing Your Progress 205

16 I'm slow and miss my deadlines 211

17 My middles sag 220

18 It never ends well 228

Step 7 Making It Better 239

19 I don't know what to revise and run out of time 245

20 My work is way too long 254

21 I resent criticism and editing 265

Final Step Keeping the Faith 273

25 Favorite Writing Books 277

Acknowledgments 283

Index 285

Excerpt from Writing Tools 297

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