Review From User :

This is a great book, and if you look for it, try for the earlier edition with the anthology in the back. The most recent edition took the essays out and that makes no sense. Why read about how to write creative nonfiction and not immediately have an example

At this point I have read most of the book in a class I am auditing, and need to return it to the library I borrowed it from. I will be on the hunt for my own copy because this is a keeper, and I can see myself returning to it for a refresher and new ideas.

The most useful chapter for me this time around was the one about how to write about family. Great advice, practical suggestions I could make use of right away.

I'm going to put all my marks behind a spoiler tag.(view spoiler)[

"When you set about writing creative nonfiction... you must bring to this endeavor a strong voice and a singular vision. This voice must be loud enough, and interesting enough, to be heard among the noise coming at us in everyday life. If you succeed, you'll find yourself in a close, if not intimate, relationship with the reader, a relationship that demands honesty and a willingness to risk a kind of exposure you may never chance in face-to-face encounters."

"...You might consider how you can approach the big issues by focusing on the smallest details." (from chapter 4: Writing the Family)

With family, think of self as biographer rather than autobiographer, to create distance.

"Write humor out of your bad experiences, not your good ones."

Other resources to look for:
Fourth Genre (literary magazine)
River Teeth (journal)

Some of my favorite essays from the anthology section:

Notes of a Native Son by James Baldwin
Total Eclipse by Annie Dillard
The Clan of One-Breasted Woman by Terry Tempest Williams
Best American Essays (series) (hide spoiler)]

Media Size : 1.3 MB