On Writing

Stephen King

It’s been a while since I read a book focused on writing. Many writing books are useful for thinking about creativity in general or for applying to any type of writing, but this one is geared toward fiction, at least in the specifically advising sections that are technically the core of the book. I actually skipped much of those, as I didn’t find much of the advice helpful and appreciated the memoir parts more. Both the beginning section of how King became a writer and the “On Living” postscript that tells the tale of getting hit by a car while he was working on this book are more interesting to me than a few paragraphs about how adverbs should be avoided. It’s actually kind of a curious structure to wrap memoir around advice on writing fiction — even if the memoir is focused on the act of writing. I think few people will appreciate the whole book equally, though most who are drawn to it will likely find something in one or the other.