By: Anne Lamott
If you like reading or writing, you should read this book. Lamott’s advice shines through her quirks and sharp humor. She tells stories of her friends, relatives, students, and editors while revealing her own life as a writer and offering practical tips to those that aspire to the same. I had to read Donald Miller at the age of 35 to hear of Anne Lamott. I hope you discover her sooner.
Two of my favorite quotes:
…hope, as Chesterton said, is the power of being cheerful in circumstances that we know to be desperate. Writing can be a pretty desperate endeavor, because it is about some of our deepest needs: our need to be visible, to be heard, our need to make sense of our lives, to wake up and grow and belong. It is no wonder if we sometimes tend to take ourselves perhaps a bit too seriously.
Becoming a writer can also profoundly change your life as a reader. One reads with a deeper appreciation and concentration, knowing now how hard writing is, especially how hard it is to make it look effortless. You begin to read with a writer’s eyes. You focus in a new way. You study how someone portrays his or her version of things in a way that is new and bold and original. You notice how a writer paints in a mesmerizing character or era for you, without your having the sense of being given a whole lot of information, and when you realize how artfully this has happened, you may actually put the book down for a moment and savor it, just taste it.