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The Art of Writing Fiction - Andrew Cowan

The Art of Writing Fiction

Paperback Published: 1st February 2019
ISBN: 9781408248348
Number Of Pages: 240

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The Art of Writing Fiction guides the reader through the processes of creative writing from journal-keeping to editing, offering techniques for stimulating creativity and making language vivid. Readers will master key aspects of fiction such as structure, character, voice and setting.

Andrew Cowan provides an insightful introduction that brings his own well-crafted prose style to bear on the processes and pleasures of writing fiction, offering practical and personal advice culled from his own experience and that of other published writers. He lays open to the reader his own notes, his writing, and the experiences from his own life that he has drawn on in his fiction allowing the reader to develop their own writing project alongside the author as they go through the book.

About the Author

Andrew Cowan is the Director of the Creative Writing programme at the University of East Anglia. He is the author of five novels, including Pig, which won the Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year Award, and most recently Worthless Men.

Industry Reviews

'Drawing on his own experience as a writer, Andrew Cowan lays bare the notes and experiences that he has used in his career, aiming to give an introduction to the creative writing process.'
Times Higher Education

'Very sane, intelligent, and in tune with my own experience of teaching.'
Tessa Hadley, Bath Spa University

'It looks absolutely great and will be a tremendous asset in our program.'
Professor Brian Castro, University of Adelaide

'At last a well-written, intelligent book about Creative Writing that I can comfortably recommend to my students.'
Matt Thorne, Brunel University

'Not only is it really useful and informative, it is also enjoyable to read... essential reading for all my students!'
Michael Langan, University of Greenwich

'Structurally the book is perfect, but what makes it magical is the revelatory tone... intimate and honest and instructive in a meditative manner. Solid advice sure, but sold so poetically.'
Susan Bradley Smith, La Trobe University

'The best coursebook on Creative Writing that I have ever read. Everything is here... writer/teachers will be stealing from this book for years to come.'
Richard Beard, National Academy of Writing

'I think it's a really fantastic resource. The chapter on 'Viewpoints' is perfect.'
Karen Stevens, University of Chichester

'Clearly written, interesting and well-targeted suggestions for practical exercises.'
Wayne Price, Aberdeen University

'I've recommended it to my MA and PhD students. It's a work that in a very unself-conscious way takes us with the writer through the stages of the creative writing experience. I found the quotes honest and apposite and unlaboured. It is authentic.'
Dic Edwards, University of Wales Lampeter

'The book covers many of the narrative and creative issues that come up when teaching creative writing. The examples are excellent. The chapters rise in complexity beginning with an engaging piece on writers' places and practice and gradually taking novice writers through more complex narrative issues.'
Stephanie Norgate, University of Chichester

CONTENTS

and exercises

 

1

WRITERS’ ROUTINES

1. When where what...

2. Timewasting

3. Friends and foes

4. What where when…

 

2

WRITE ABOUT WHAT YOU KNOW: OBSERVATIONAL JOURNALS

5. Keeping an observational journal

6. Keeping a scrapbook

7. Weather report

8. Street life

9. Workplace

10. Home life

 

3

WRITE ABOUT WHAT YOU DON’T KNOW YOU KNOW: AUTOMATIC WRITING

11. First thoughts

12. First things

13. First thoughts, second thoughts

14. First drafts

 

4

DON’T TELL ME…

15. Telling it slant

16. Don’t mention it

17. How does this feel?

18. Sightless

19. Hyacinths

20. Summary and scene

 

5

WRITE ABOUT WHAT YOU USED TO KNOW: REMEMBERING AND PLACE

21. Lost things

22. Lost lands

23. Lost selves

24. Lost loves

25. ‘Lost’

26. Departures

27. Typical

28. Untypical

29. A place

30. A person

 

6

WRITE ABOUT WHO YOU KNOW: CHARACTER

31. A Portrait of Yourself As You Are Now

32. Twenty questions

33. Q&A gimmick

34. Notes towards a character

35. Envelopes

36. Still life

37. Two characters

 

7

VOICES

38. Oral history

39. Conversation

40. Formatting dialogue

41. Dramatic twist

42. Cross purposes

43. Vernacular voices

44. In summary

 

8

VIEWPOINTS

45. Something is happening out there

46. Something else is happening

47. Captors and captives

48. Eye witness

49. You

50. You, too

51. Third, and finally

 

9

MIDDLES, ENDS, BEGINNINGS: STRUCTURE

52. Story vs plot

53. Diagnostics

54. Beginning middle end

55. Middle beginning end

56. End middle beginning

57. Sub-plotting

58. Shuffling

59. Re-arranging

 

10

MAKING STRANGE: DEFAMILIARISATION

60. Literally

61. Figuratively

62. Given words

63. Given moods

64. Exercises in style

65. Mathews’s algorithm (almost)

66. Horizontal

67. Vertical

 

11

MAKING CLEAR: REVISION, GRAMMAR AND PUNCTUATION

68. More first thoughts

69. Checklist

70. Next thoughts

71. Simple

72. Compound

73. Complex

74. Compound-Complex

 

 

12

WORKSHOPPING

 

 

ISBN: 9781408248348
ISBN-10: 1408248344
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 240
Published: 1st February 2019
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 15.24  x 1.27
Weight (kg): 0.35
Edition Number: 1

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