12 Essential Essays for Writers

yeahwriters:

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The Electric Typewriter and Amanda Oliver have put toghether a list of their all-time favourite essays for writers:

On Keeping a Notebook by Joan Didion – A great essay about making notes that gets to the very core of the writing process

Write Like a Motherfucker by Cheryl Strayed – Raw, emotional advice on the role of humility and surrender in the often tortured world of the writer

Thoughts on Writing by Elizabeth Gilbert  – On disicpline, hard work, rejection and why it’s never too late to start

Write Till You Drop by Annie Dillard – “Do you think I could be a writer?” “I don’t know… . Do you like sentences?”

Everything you Need to Know About Writing Successfully – in Ten Minutes by Stephen King – Short, sharp advice on everything from talent and self-criticism to having fun and entertaining your audience

Why I Write by George Orwell – On egoism, a love of beauty, the quest for truth and the desire to change the world — Orwell’s ‘four great motive for writing’.

Despite Tough Guys, Life Is Not the Only School for Real Novelists by Kurt Vonnegut – A beautifully argued defence of the role of teaching in developing writers.

That Crafty Feeling by Zadie Smith – A lecture by a great essayist and novelist on the craft of writing.

A Place You All Know Well by Michael Chabon – On the central role of exporation in writing.

The Nature of Fun by David Foster Wallace (excerpt) – DFW on what drives writers to write

Uncanny the Singing That Comes from Certain Husks by Joy Williams – “Who cares if the writer is not whole? Of course the writer is not whole, or even particularly well…”

Where Do You Get Your Ideas? by Neil Gaiman – A meditation on inspriation

Those Words That Echo…Echo…Echo Through Life by Jamaica Kincaid – Another great essay from the the New York Times Writers on Writing series

If you any suggestions for additions, let us know!

12 Essential Essays for Writers

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