This book was a gift from a student at the end of a semester, a gift that keeps on giving. This outstanding book has literally been an inspiration. It is not only for writers, but for readers as well. Mondays are “Writers on Writing,” quotes that are then discussed usually on one page. Tuesday deals with “Motivation,” topics that make suggestions on what to write and how to come up with subjects to write about. “Wednesday Writing Class” gives the writer an “assignment as well as practical advice . Thursdays topics are “Editing,” extremely helpful for those who need to strengthen or refine their editing skills. “Biography” on Fridays deal with classics writers as well as recent writers, always giving interesting facts. Saturday suggests “Books to Read,” and Sunday gives a “Writing Prompt,” which I have used often for my Freshman Composition or Advanced Writing classes. I have received some excellent pieces using these prompts.
Here is an example from a Saturday “Books to Read” listing:
“Grimm’s Fairy Tales
by The Brothers Grimm
But iron slippers had already been put upon the fire, and they were brought in with tongs, and set before her. Then she was forced to put on the red-hot shoes, and dance until she dropped dead. (Jacob and William Grimm, from ‘Little Snow White.””
The entry gives the history of the brothers, whose collection was published in 1812. Both brothers were students of history of folklore and did much research on their subject, often going out into the countryside and listening to and recording old folktales. Obviously, judging from the quoted excerpt, the brothers’ target readers were not children. As writers, the stories teach us to “create a story with a truly compelling plot regardless of the simplicity of the theme.” Many times we see the theme of a conflict/battle between good and evil played out in The Brothers Grimm’s stories. The outcome is predictable; what attracts the reader is the journey to get there.
Such entries (although I have shortened this one and paraphrased it drastically) are fun to read and to think about. A full-time writer could undertake one entry per day (There are 365 of them–enough for a year.), and an in-depth study of this book would make an excellent course for writers.
I highly recommend this book.