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Nicht verfügbarBird by Bird: some instructions on writing and life
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Bird by Bird: some instructions on writing and life

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Bird by Bird: some instructions on writing and life

Bewertungen:
4/5 (1,957 Bewertungen)
Länge:
233 Seiten
4 Stunden
Freigegeben:
Oct 30, 2015
ISBN:
9781925307443
Format:
Buch

Auch als verfügbar...

HörbuchSchnappschuss

Auch als verfügbar...

HörbuchSchnappschuss

Beschreibung

‘Thirty years ago my older brother, who was ten years old at the time, was trying to get a report on birds written that he’d had three months to write. It was due the next day. We were out at our family cabin in Bolinas, and he was at the kitchen table close to tears, surrounded by binder paper and pencils and unopened books on birds, immobilized by the hugeness of the task ahead. Then my father sat down beside him, put his arm around my brother’s shoulder, and said, “Bird by bird, buddy. Just take it bird by bird.”’

Here, for the first time, is a local edition of the bible of writing guides — a wry, honest, down-to-earth book that has never stopped selling since it was first published in the United States in the 1990s.

In Bird by Bird, Anne Lamott, a bestelling novelist and memoirist, distils what she’s learned over years of trial and error. Beautifully written, wise, and immensely helpful, this is the book for serious writers and writers-to-be.

Freigegeben:
Oct 30, 2015
ISBN:
9781925307443
Format:
Buch

Auch als verfügbar...

HörbuchSchnappschuss

Über den Autor

Anne Lamott is the acclaimed writer of more than a dozen books of fiction, nonfiction, and collected essays. Her most recent book was Small Victories: Spotting Improbable Moments of Grace. Known for her honest, humorous approach to subjects such as faith and loss, Anne has received the Guggenheim Fellowship, taught writing at UC Davis, and was the subject of an Academy Award-winning documentary.


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  • (5/5)
    I've read this book before, I know I have, but I can't find a review I wrote about it anywhere. So I either didn't finish it or didn't review it. This time I remedied both.

    Anne Lamott has a special way of writing that sounds like you're having a conversation with her… a really eloquent, thought-out conversation. She seems very approachable and realistic and doesn't make writing out to be something only the truly gifted can do. She talks about her struggles and her jealousy and her doubts and how being a published writer hasn't made her life a fairy tale, like many people might think. It was incredibly refreshing to read. It doesn't hurt that she's hilarious in a sly, dark way.

    I read this book in two nights before bed, and with every page I wanted to jump up and start writing something, just to be putting words on the page. She's that good.

    Some favorite quotes:
    - "One of the gifts of being a writer is that it gives you an excuse to do things, to go places and explore. Another is that writing motivates you to look closely at life as it lurches by and tramps around."
    - "Because for some of us, books are as important as almost anything else on earth. What a miracle it is that out of these small, flat, rigid squares of paper unfolds world after world after world, worlds that sing to you, comfort and quiet or excite you. Books help us understand who we are and how we are to behave. They show us what community and friendship mean; they show us how to live and die."
    - "Think of those times when you've read prose or poetry that is presented in such a way that you have a fleeting sense of being startled by beauty or insight, by a glimpse into someone's soul. All of a sudden everything seems to fit together or at least have some meaning for a moment."
  • (5/5)
    This was an incredible, enthusiastic piece of work on the nature of writing and life itself. Lamott manages to carve out pieces of her own journey, alongside her soul, to illustrate what it means to be a writer- to exist in that delicate space where no one can destroy you. The writing is fluid and the prose is sharp. There is not a word wasted here, and never one too many. I was thoroughly impressed.Full marks: 5 stars.
  • (2/5)
    Not was I was expecting
  • (4/5)
    “Writing has so much to give, so much to teach, so many surprises. That thing you had to force yourself to do---the actual act of writing---turns out to be the best part. It’s like discovering that while you thought you needed the tea ceremony for the caffeine, what you really needed was the tea ceremony. The act of writing turns out to be its own reward.”Anne Lamott has written a few novels and a lot of non-fiction, some of it much too spiritual for my taste. But in this book she shares her ideas about the writing process that are all part of the syllabus that she uses in her writing classes at UC Davis. Some struck me as invaluable, some seemed pretty obvious and many were downright hilarious and that’s why I liked this book. She said a lot of things that could apply to almost any career path you were contemplating and would hold you in good stead. With humor and sympathy for those struggling with the writing process she explained why so many writers fail miserably before they finally succeed. By so explaining I had to wonder why any books have ever gotten written. It sounds like a horrible slog. She stresses that you should write about your childhood and quotes Flannery O’Connor who said that anyone who survived childhood has enough material to write for the rest of his or her life. And my mind immediately goes to The Glass Castle, Liar’s Club, Angela’s Ashes and other books that found great success because the author survived a truly awful childhood and I think O’Connor may have hit on something here. At any rate, Lamott is pointing out that within ourselves we have many stories that need telling and some of them may even be interesting to other people so it’s a good place to start. I think she’s probably right. Recommended.
  • (2/5)
    Some genuinely good advice once you wade through the neuroses. But wildly overrated as a writing book IMO.
  • (5/5)
    I received a new copy of this for Christmas 2009, and have been rereading and re-enjoying it. This book is the best book I could recommend for any writer at any stage in their career. I also recommend this book to friends and relatives of writers because Lamott is so superb at exposing the inner-mind of a writer, complete with anxieties particular to those who write. Anne Lamott is, for lack of a better term, a "writer's writer," a rare writer who not only writes for the joy of writing, but writes beautifully and honestly.
  • (5/5)
    The title of this book comes from a story of the author's brother who procrastinates all through the holidays on a project about various birds. The day before it is due, the lad sits at the table in despair - how is he to finish the project in time? His father, an author, sits down and says:Bird by bird, buddy. Just take it bird by bird.As I sit here writing this, I am killing bird #12 on my to-do list and it is sound advice. Anne Lamott tells her story of the writing life in this beautiful book on love, death, birth, tragedy, drugs, and learning to love oneself while agonising over writing. Just ask anyone who has completed a PhD and they can tell you all about it. A friend once described the process as if you were rowing a boat. While you left the shore, others were around and you could call out for guidance, but soon, you were on the wide expanse of ocean and there was only you and your inner world to guide you. It seems like years, and often it is, until you reach the other shore, at times not knowing where you are going or where you will land. But one day, you reach the other shore. Or you don't and you are bitter and dejected forever. But that is a different story. This work reminded me of parts of the 2015 movie The End of the Tour, the story of David Lipsky's (of Rolling Stone magazine) 5-day interview with American author, David Foster Wallace, except Lamott mentions some of her "I am not so famous" stories. But the sentiment is there. The agony of writing, the endless work, the endless self-doubt and self-loathing. Lamott tells her story in a way that is helpful, rather than whiney. I often think of Charlotte Bronte and Mary Shelley and how their important works seemed not quite right, whereas Lamott hits the nail on the head with a somewhat gendered perspective that is simultaneously relevant to all. Elements of drugs, religion, friendship, and working with editors will be familiar to many. Yet Lamott's story is beautiful in the Stoic sense of beauty being related to human excellence. Even if the only thing the reader takes away from this work that one can achieve great things "bird by bird", it is a worthy lesson.
  • (4/5)
    This book is mostly a supportive book written in a self-help style, and almost a spiritual style. It has a lot of anecdotes detailing her experiences dealing with all the roadblocks that we encounter or put up in our own path. She has a neurotic sense of humor that makes the book entertaining at the same time. In this book, she writes a lot about the publishing process, adding a hearty dose of reality to want-to-be writers. This book came recommended to me, although I can't remember the source. I felt the book got off to a slow start. The first few chapters leaned more toward the spiritual style which didn't appeal to me, but later chapters had more useful information. Overall, I found the book an enjoyable read, even if it didn't give me all I was expecting.
  • (5/5)
    Great book. Useful advice.
  • (2/5)
    Where I got the book: purchased from Amazon. Perhaps I'm reading this, one of the writing community's most referred-to books, too late in life. Perhaps as a 20-year-old English major (which I never was) I would have loved this book. That could explain its popularity; it seems like the kind of writing-advice book that will be invariably set as a mandatory read in an MFA program. And that, in turn, could explain why a certain type of writer will, if asked to give writing advice, sound exactly like Anne Lamotte. Maybe that's the problem: familiarity. I've heard so much of this before that it felt, well, stale. Write every day. Write from the heart. Find your own voice. Or maybe it's because I'm a 52-year-old recovering cynic and I'm a little less EMOTIONAL about the whole writing process. The notion of going on a 3-day alcohol (or later, eating) binge because your editor didn't like your book seems a bit excessive. Paying a therapist to help you get through your jealousy of your successful writer friends? Mmmmmkay. And Lamott's overwrought prose style made me think of Anne Rice, for some reason. Perhaps it's just because they're both called Anne. There were moments when I was moved and made to think about writing, so maybe one day I'll read Bird by Bird again and see if I can revise this first impression. It could be that the gems contained within the neurotic twaddle are what make the book shine in the memories of so many writers. But I ended up feeling that I'd learned a lot more about Anne Lamott than I'd learned about writing.
  • (5/5)
    If you've ever wanted to write, but found that all the biggest obstacles were within yourself, this book is for you.
  • (5/5)
    Amazing to read over and over.
  • (4/5)
    An excellent read about writing and written with gentle humour and self-depreciation. Now to repair the problem that exists between keyboard and seat.
  • (5/5)
    Warm, wonderful and witty advice on writing. There were times when the humour was too obviously contrived, but as Lamott explains, humour was her defence mechanism in childhood. On the whole a book every writer should read for its honest look at the writing profession. Even as an experienced author, the emptiness of the blank page had almost overwhelmed me - after reading Bird by Bird I'm fired up with enthusiam again.
  • (4/5)
    Picked this up at a book fair although I have never read any of Lamott's other work. It is a very down to earth realistic book about writing for people who want to write about down to earth realistic stuff. I doubt she gets many potential horror or science fiction writers in her workshops. The book succeeds because it is so honest about how little chance you have to get published or even if you do get published to make any money. The author uses self-deprecating humor throughout to talk about her own trials and tribulations as a writer. There's a lot of autobiography here as well, some of it very moving. Lamott is an odd mix of a spiritual person who seems to attend church a lot and talk to a lot of priests, but uses some very earthly language in her writing. All in all it is a quick interesting read that will give you a few tips and some honest encouragement that, even if you don't become a famous writer, the act of writing itself is good for you. For example, think of the stories of your own childhood you can leave to your children and grandchildren. Just stop listening to KFKD, sit down, and write.
  • (5/5)
    Great book about the art of writing and getting it done.
  • (5/5)
    Writing down one of these brief reviews feels like a bigger task than usual when the book in question is about writing and by a celebrated author. This work made my reading list following multiple references in Sunday sermons and then most recently following a final prompt via Tools of Titans. Lamott is very open about the angst that dominates much of an aspiring author's life. She's also open about her own life experiences, especially the loss of two important people and how those experiences intertwine with her writing. The book is enjoyable to read and offers plenty of practical advice. Getting published is a right of passage but not a certain path to fame and fortune. Writing brings other benefits including personal expression and the realization of our own life's lessons. Would be writers should stop being "would be" and instead get started. Find a time and place. Write what you know. Be honest. Get feedback in ways that are constructive. Figure out your story as an author as you go.
  • (1/5)
    I'm going to echo what many other reviewers have said about this book, mainly that it's a self-indulgent, whiny and contains very little actual advice for writing or life, but I think it's necessary to add that it has aged very badly. Thus, it is pretty useless for an aspiring writer in the 21st century.Lamott's paroxysms of angst over writing restaurant reviews on a typewriter or word processor over the luxurious span of several days to a week that she then snail mails to an editor come off as quaint tales of olden days to the modern writer. Today, authors post their progress and publication dates on several social media outlets and, more often than not, blog about ancillary topics while working on their novels. So Lamott's reassurances that successful writers stare at empty screen and "wool gather" or, in one of the worst examples of many terrible analogies in the book, rock back and forth like an autistic child, comes off as hopelessly out of touch with writers, the publishing world and writing in general. Perhaps because I've worked in modern newsrooms with same-hour deadlines, I couldn't help but think if writing was this difficult and torturous for her, maybe Lamott should have examined other avenues to channel her efforts through. And it became increasingly difficult to take her seriously as a writer with each passing page.For example, Lamott's description of how she nearly lost the third portion of an advance for one of her novels but regained it by going on a cocaine-laced bender and showing up at her editor's house -- his personal home, mind you -- and explaining what her novel was supposed to be only reinforced the growing sense I had while reading the book that this was a woman who desperately wanted to be a writer, didn't really have the talent, but through leveraging already-existing contacts shoehorned her way into moderate success. She portrays the subsequent plot treatment requested by the editor, receipt of the advance portion and publication of the book as a success, but I found it to be rather sad and pathetic.The glaring truth that really makes this book a difficult read is that Lamott's writing simply isn't great. Her descriptions are pedestrian, such as "an old black woman from the South". She actually describes special Olympics participants vaguely as all looking "sort of" related to each other (a lazy and insulting description). Lamott also goes on ad nauseum about all the usual writing advice -- let your characters do what they want, carry a notebook everywhere, describe using all five senses etc. -- but her own descriptions are so bland you keep wishing she would take her own advice. The anecdotes alternate between condescending and boring and do nothing to actually shed insight on writing or living a successful life.Finally, Lamott, of course, struggled with neurosis and alcohol and a host of other issues but you can tell she revels in this a bit as part of being a writer. The whole book screams, "See! I drank too much and am a slob and melodramatic and therefore am quirky and eccentric like writers are supposed to be!! But it's OK because I discovered God but refer to God as 'her'! See how pithy and writer-ly I am? Isn't that hilarious?"When her response to getting the second draft of her novel rejected was that "fortunately" she still drank at the time, I knew she was one of those people who love the idea of being a writer but don't actually like writing at all. In fact, she admits that writing is the "fly in the ointment" part of being a writer, which is a bit ridiculous to me. If you're going to write a book meant for aspiring writers, shouldn't you actually like writing? If someone hates writing, it inevitably shows in their final product. That's not an issue one can learn their way out from under. Lamott is a case in point.
  • (4/5)
    An encouraging and philosophical book on the creative practice of writing; similar to Anne Dillard's "The Writing Life".
  • (4/5)
    Can one ever get enough of Jane Austen? Forget about the game aspects of the book, such as counting up the points and listing your failings and accomplishments. Just enjoy the ride!
  • (5/5)
    If you never read another book about writing (well you might want to read Stephen King’s On Writing) read Bird by Bird. Lamott doesn’t give us a step by step how to. What she gives is so much more - the essence of what is it is to be a writer. Even if you never see your work in print the heart of this book is that you will learn to honour yourself and your craft. Lamott writes like a dream which leaves me feeling both that I’ll never write another decent word and at the same time that I can’t wait to finish my next story.
  • (5/5)
    Beautifully written, authentic, and relatable. It is a rare thing to laugh out loud and to cry over the same sentence, in public, with reckless abandon.
  • (5/5)
    If you're looking for a book on writing, go for this one. Lamott is sympathetic and brutally honest, and knows how to bring the truth to light without crushing your dreams. Beautifully written and laugh-out-loud funny.
  • (5/5)
    This is one of those deeply philosophical books for me that takes a long time to read. I have to savor, and underline, and re read, and highlight. It is thoroughly practical and sympathetic to the human condition, and the role that writing plays within it.
  • (3/5)
    Better than expected.
  • (4/5)
    I had always somehow thought of Anne Lamott as sappy, but it turns out she is actually funny and insightful and interesting. In her writing advice, at least, but I suspect also in her fiction, which I might also have to read now. This was the perfect thing to read to get ready for NaNoWriMo: equal parts inspiring and plainly useful.
  • (5/5)
    If you create--writing, painting, art, ANYTHING-- Bird by Bird is THE book in my opinion. It's not a how-to guide, but a way of viewing the creative process. My favorite thing by Anne Lamott.
  • (5/5)
    It is an encouraging book, and the author has a great sense of humor.
  • (4/5)
    Great book, so glad I read it. I'm sure I'll read it again and again. I loved the stories about her son, especially. What a comical child, and perfect material for a book like this.

    I only gave her four stars because her mixed metaphors got a little annoying at points.
  • (5/5)
    Oh my goodness. This book was so heartfelt and beautifully written, and above all, FUNNY! I think perhaps it beats the top spot for my favourite and most inspiring writing manuals. Not only does Anne talk give advice for writers, she is open about her own shortfalls and about the shortfalls of the world of publishing. She asks us to write for ourselves, for our children and for the truth, rather than for money, because it isn't all its cracked up to be. I loved her description of how she felt when her book was about to be published, how she felt when the reviews came out. Or how it feels to submit a manuscript to an editor and check the mail fifty times a day. Beautiful.