Seven Steps on the Writer's Path: The Journey from Frustration to Fulfillment

Nancy Pickard

Published by Ballantine Books, 2003
ISBN 10: 034545524X / ISBN 13: 9780345455246
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Synopsis: The blank page, the impossible deadline, the exhilarating rush of inspiration, the perils of publication: There is no profession more maddening or more rewarding than being a writer. Yet surprisingly, all writers, no matter how famous or successful, pass through the same sequence of stages in the course of their careers. It was this remarkable insight that inspired veteran writers Nancy Pickard and Lynn Lott to pool their talents and write a book. The result is one of the wisest and liveliest guides to the literary life ever written—a volume of astonishing revelation, warm reassurance, brilliant encouragement, and welcome humor.

Drawing on their own experience as writers of fiction and nonfiction as well as the insights of scores of colleagues, Pickard and Lott follow the trajectory of the writer’s life from the first time that inner voice whispers “I want to write” to the burst of accomplishment that comes when the book is finished, the vision expressed, the dream made real. No matter what you write or how much recognition you’ve received, if you’re serious about writing as a profession, you are bound to pass through the seven steps on the writer’s path. Pickard and Lott call these steps Unhappiness, Wanting, Commitment, Wavering, Letting Go, Immersion, and Fulfillment.

Are you sunk in a pit of loneliness and confusion, burdened by pressures you can neither name nor escape? Welcome to the stage of Unhappiness, what Pickard and Lott call the “precreative state.” Don’t worry, Tolstoy and Stephen King have been there before you, and somehow they cleared the abyss of Wanting (desires you can’t shake, jealousies that sting like bees) and climbed the ladder of Commitment.

Wavering is where you hit the wall, tread water, and succumb to the dread paralysis of writer’s block and the abuse of unsympathetic editors and critics. E. B. White said a writer is like a surfer waiting for the perfect wave—and in the stage of Letting Go, that wave finally crests, releasing the torrent of creativity that carries you through the deeply satisfying stages of Immersion and Fulfillment.

Pickard and Lott are the buddies every writer dreams of—always there to light the way and lighten your mood, generous with advice and sympathy, and bold enough to give you the occasional kick in the pants. Whether you’re a “wannabe” writer or a published literary veteran, you’re bound to find this book a source of true delight, vital wisdom, and lasting inspiration.

About the Author: Nancy Pickard has authored sixteen critically acclaimed mystery novels and dozens of short stories. Her popular works have garnered an Anthony Award, a Shamus Award, Agatha Awards, Macavity Awards, and an Edgar nomination. A former president and founding member of Sisters in Crime, she has been a full-time professional writer for thirty-five years. Prior to writing fiction, she worked as a newspaper reporter and editor, a corporate writer, and a freelance writer. She lives in Prairie Village, Kansas.

A licensed family therapist who holds two master’s degrees in counseling and psychology, Lynn Lott has taught parenting, trained family therapists, and worked for years as an associate professor at Sonoma State University. She is a diplomate in the North American Society of Adlerian Psychology, the highest achievement in that group. Her self-help books include Positive Discipline A-Z, Positive Discipline for Teenagers, Positive Discipline for Parenting in Recovery, Positive Discipline in the Classroom, Do-It-Yourself Therapy, and Chores Without Wars. The mother of two and stepmother of two, she lives with her husband and dogs, dividing their time between California and Florida.

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Title: Seven Steps on the Writer's Path: The ...
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Publication Date: 2003
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: Used: Good

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