how to write like tolstoy a journey into the minds of our greatest writers

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How To Write Like Tolstoy

Author : Richard Cohen
ISBN : 9780812998313
Genre : Literary Criticism
File Size : 47. 7 MB
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For anyone who has ever identified with a hero or heroine, been seduced by a strong opening sentence, or been powerfully moved by a story’s end, How to Write Like Tolstoy is a thought-provoking journey inside the minds of the world’s most accomplished storytellers, from Shakespeare to Stephen King. “I have tried, as far as possible using the words of the authors themselves, to explain their craft, aiming to take readers on a journey into the concerns, techniques, tricks, flaws, and, occasionally, obsessions of our most luminous writers.”—from the Preface Behind every acclaimed work of literature is a trove of heartfelt decisions. The best authors put painstaking—sometimes obsessive—effort into each element of their stories, from plot and character development to dialogue and point of view. What made Nabokov choose the name Lolita? Why did Fitzgerald use first-person narration in The Great Gatsby? How did Kerouac, who raged against revision, finally come to revise On the Road? Veteran editor and teacher Richard Cohen draws on his vast reservoir of a lifetime’s reading and his insight into what makes good prose soar. Here are Gabriel García Márquez’s thoughts on how to start a novel (“In the first paragraph you solve most of the problems with your book”); Virginia Woolf offering her definition of style (“It is all rhythm. Once you get that, you can’t use the wrong words”); and Vladimir Nabokov on the nature of fiction (“All great novels are great fairy tales”). Cohen has researched the published works and private utterances of our greatest authors to discover the elements that made their prose memorable. The result is a unique exploration of the act and art of writing that enriches our experience of reading both the classics and the best modern fiction. Evoking the marvelous, the famous, and the irreverent, he reveals the challenges that even the greatest writers faced—and shows us how they surmounted them. Praise for How to Write Like Tolstoy “The highest compliment one can pay How to Write Like Tolstoy is that it provokes an overwhelming urge to read and write, to be in dialogue or even doomed competition with the greatest creative minds . . . . That Mr. Cohen is an editor, that his love of literature comes in large part from awe in the presence of better writers than he, is no small matter. His love is infectious, and regardless of how well he ends up teaching us to write, that is miracle enough.”—Wall Street Journal “[A] perfect tasting menu . . . the homage of a passionate reader to the writers who have provided his ‘main pastime.’ ”—The Sunday Times (U.K.) “This book is a wry, critical friend to both writer and reader. It is filled with cogent examples and provoking statements. You will agree or quarrel with each page, and be a sharper writer and reader by the end.”—Hilary Mantel “These twelve essays are like twelve perfect university lectures on the craft of writing fiction. The professor—or, in this case, author—succeeds in being not only knowledgeable but also interesting, charming, and engaging.”—Library Journal (starred review) “Insightful . . . [Cohen] escorts his readers to Iris Murdoch for sage counsel on launching a novel, to Salman Rushdie for shrewd guidance on developing an unreliable narrator, to Rudyard Kipling for a cagey hint on creating memorable minor characters, and to Leo Tolstoy for a master’s help in transforming personal experience into fictional art.”—Booklist

How To Write Like Tolstoy

Author : Richard Cohen
ISBN : 9781786070227
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 32. 81 MB
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For anyone who has ever identified with a character from fiction, been seduced by a first sentence or been profoundly moved by a story’s end, How to Write Like Tolstoy is a wonderful and illuminating journey into the minds and imaginations of the world’s greatest writers. What made Nabokov choose the name Lolita? Why did Fitzgerald tell The Great Gatsby in the first person? How did Kerouac, who raged against revision, finally come to revise On the Road? Why did Martin Amis give up on writing about sex? Veteran editor Richard Cohen draws on a vast and eclectic reservoir of knowledge to reveal what makes good prose soar. From plot and character development to dialogue and point of view, the motivations, obsessions, tricks and talents of a host of great novelists are brought to the fore, their published works mined and private beliefs unearthed. There’s the nature of originality as plagiarism is discussed, and a weighing of the odds when trying to write about physical intimacies. And how to begin…Or end? From first page to last, How to Write Like Tolstoy is a unique exploration of the act and art of writing, one which enriches our experience of reading both the

Plotto

Author : William Wallace Cook
ISBN : 9780981928470
Genre : Language Arts & Disciplines
File Size : 69. 31 MB
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Have you struggled to expand your initial idea into a complete story? Plotting can be frustrating work! What if there were a tool for this very problem, so you could navigate these uncharted waters as quickly as possible? A tool that starts with what you have (a situation, perhaps, or a group of characters) and sets you on the road to new possibilities? Plotto does all this. Created by a master of organized creativity, William Wallace Cook (one of the most prolific writers in history), Plotto has been prized by professional authors and screenwriters since its publication in 1928, and is still in demand today, with copies of the original edition selling for up to $400. This Norton Creek Edition is an exact reproduction of Cook's work. To keep the book down to a manageable size (300 pages of very small type) while retaining its powerful features, Cook uses a telegraphic format that takes some getting used to, so working your way carefully through the introduction and its examples is the key to professional-quality results. Because Plotto was written in the Twenties, its situations can seem old-fashioned and its terminology politically incorrect, but these problems are more apparent than real. Cook himself wrote both westerns and early classics of science fiction, so you see how replacing stagecoach with star ship or dance hall girl with male stripper are within the reach of anyone using the Plotto system, and, in fact, this kind of substitution is how the book is intended to be used, and is the key to its flexibility and enduring popularity.

Robert Hartwell Fiske S Dictionary Of Unendurable English

Author : Robert Hartwell Fiske
ISBN : 9781451651348
Genre : Reference
File Size : 87. 23 MB
Format : PDF, Kindle
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Robert Hartwell Fiske aims to eliminate laxity in language today by way of this witty and engaging reference. Fiske rails against "laxicographers and ding-a-linguists" who, with their misguided thinking, actually promote the dissolution of the English language. He also illustrates why dictionaries don't always provide the correct meaning or usage of a word. With concise instruction and numerous examples of misused words, Fiske makes it easier than ever to learn from others' mistakes. This comprehensive dictionary of common misusages lays bare the mistakes we all make every day. Robert Hartwell Fiske, the grumbling grammarian of our time, shows you the definitive right way and wrong way to use language--and illustrates why dictionaries don't always provide the correct meaning or usage of a word.

Sweet Theft

Author : J.D. McClatchy
ISBN : 9781619027602
Genre : Literary Collections
File Size : 48. 72 MB
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Centuries ago, when books were rare, those who owned them would lend them to friends, who in turn would copy out passages they especially liked before returning the precious book to its owner. These anthologies came to be known as Commonplace Books, and modern writers as different as W. H. Auden and Alec Guinness have kept them as well, recording phrases or passages that struck them as wise or witty or quirky. The result is as much the self-portrait of a sensibility as it is a collection of miscellaneous delights. Renowned poet J. D. McClatchy has been keeping such a book for three decades now. This selection from it offers a unique look into what strange facts, what turns of mind or phrase, what glorious feats of language and nature can attract the attention of a poet. The great and the obscure are gathered around the same table, exchanging remarkable opinions. Henry James is speaking of Venice: “The deposed, the defeated, the disenchanted, the wounded, or even only the bored, have seemed to find there something that no other place could give.” At the other end of the table, Groucho Marx is playing drama critic: “I didn’t like the play, but then I saw it under adverse circumstances—the curtain was up.” Nietzsche and Flaubert, Dizzy Gillespie and Marianne Moore—dozens of unexpected and timeless aphorisms and anecdotes that pierce and provoke. Many of McClatchy’s own observations about the art and prowess of writing are included as well. This is a book meant to be sipped, not gulped; meant to be read at leisure and pondered on at length.

Tolstoy

Author : Rosamund Bartlett
ISBN : 9780151014385
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 78. 89 MB
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Draws on key Russian sources and extensive new materials to trace the influential 19th-century literary master's life and legacy, providing coverage of such topics as his early life, his troubled relationship with his wife and his evocative portrayals of beloved Russian landscapes.

Orwell S Nose

Author : John Sutherland
ISBN : 9781780236483
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 36. 84 MB
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In 2012 writer John Sutherland permanently lost his sense of smell. At about the same time, he embarked on a rereading of George Orwell and—still coping with his recent disability—noticed something peculiar: Orwell was positively obsessed with smell. In this original, irreverent biography, Sutherland offers a fresh account of Orwell’s life and works, one that sniffs out a unique, scented trail that wends from Burmese Days through Nineteen Eighty-Four and on to The Road to Wigan Pier. Sutherland airs out the odors, fetors, stenches, and reeks trapped in the pages of Orwell’s books. From Winston Smith’s apartment in Nineteen Eighty-Four, which “smelt of boiled cabbage and old rag mats,” to the tantalizing aromas of concubine Ma Hla May’s hair in Burmese Days, with its “mingled scent of sandalwood, garlic, coconut oil, and jasmine,” Sutherland explores the scent narratives that abound in Orwell’s literary world. Along the way, he elucidates questions that have remained unanswered in previous biographies, addressing gaps that have kept the writer elusively from us. In doing so, Sutherland offers an entertaining but enriching look at one of the most important writers of the twentieth century and, moreover, an entirely new and sensuous way to approach literature: nose first.

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