Monday, June 22, 2009
"Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life" by Anne Lamott
My grade: B
As is clear from the title, this book is for writers, or more specifically, aspiring/unpublished fiction writers. Having read several books on writing, I would say that this one is quite helpful and insightful, and offers to some extent a new perspective while covering the basics. There are a few things I didn't like about the book, however. Firstly, Lamott states quite openly that being funny is important to her, and while she often is, sometimes it feels over-the-top and plain unnecessary. Secondly, she focuses way too much on her own story, and not enough on general tips and potential outcomes for all writers. She additionally has a tendency to dwell on a certain story from her life, which in the end, bears no (or hardly any) relevance to the reader. There were, overall, a significant amount of anecdotes and details from her personal life, which in my opinion didn't have to be present in such a book; at least, not to this extent.
For all of you writers out there, if you haven't read too many books on writing yet, I would recommend this one.