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Stein on Writing

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Stein on Writing

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Stein on Writing
A Master Editor of Some of the Most Successful Writers of Our Century Shares His Craft Techniques and Strategies
By Sol Stein
St. Martin's Griffin, New York: 1995
ISBN: 978-0-3122-5421-6

Reviewed by Harry S. Chou - October 31, 2017

Whether you are writing fiction or nonfiction, Stein on Writing offers writers at every skill level a wealth of sage advice on a range of topics from writing a compelling first sentence to tips on revising your work. A classic from the moment it was first published, Stein on Writing is a book that serves as both a guide to editing, as well as a how-to book that concentrates on helping you to correct common errors that can be dragging your story down. It is the type of 'writing' book that every writer should read, and one that most, having read it, will want a copy of for their bookshelf so that you can re-read it again, and again, and again.

This book was written by Sol Stein. He is the author of nine novels, several plays and screenplays, as well as several works of nonfiction, including two books on writing. He also has decades of experience as an editor, writing teacher, and poet. To round out his bona fides as a writing instructor, he has also created several computer software programs aimed at helping writers compose their next masterpiece.

In Stein on Writing, Stein brings his ample talents to bare to help you improve your overall writing skills, with a focus on crafting character driven stories. More important, he offers a wealth of tips, advice, and suggestions on how to fix, and improve, what you have already written. Throughout, Stein's writing is clear and his advice is to the point. He offers examples of what works, and what doesn't, and he provides a lot of insights into various plotting techniques. While the bulk of this book will prove to be primarily of interest to fiction writers, nonfiction writers will also find a treasure trove of information on how to use fiction techniques to improve their nonfiction pieces. No matter where you are in your writing endeavors, I think that you will find useful information in this book that you can use to improve your writing skills and which will help you to polish works you have already written.

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