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On Writing

Did you know Stephen King wrote the best writing how-to book ever?

On Writing is probably the only book you need on writing.

The internet and book shops are full of how-to-write-well books. They're largely boring (so boring), long and impossible to be inspired by, but one little gem covers it all.

If you're not already a fan, just try it. I'll lend you my copy if you don't want to spring for the 17 bucks. 

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Some of the wisdom:

“So okay― there you are in your room with the shade down and the door shut and the plug pulled out of the base of the telephone. You've blown up your TV and committed yourself to a thousand words a day, come hell or high water. Now comes the big question: What are you going to write about? And the equally big answer: Anything you damn well want.”

“If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot. There's no way around these two things that I'm aware of, no shortcut.”

“One of the really bad things you can do to your writing is to dress up the vocabulary, looking for long words because you're maybe a little bit ashamed of your short ones. This is like dressing up a household pet in evening clothes. The pet is embarrassed and the person who committed this act of premeditated cuteness should be even more embarrassed.”

King published On Writing in 2000. The novelist James Smythe wrote an article on King's book for The Guardian in Ten things I learned about writing from Stephen King, describing it as a must-read: "On Writing tells you how King does it, to help you to find your own. Even if you’re not a fan of his books, it’s invaluable to the in-development writer. Heck, it’s invaluable to all writers."

Remember this: “optimism is a perfectly legitimate response to failure.”

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