This blog will touch on the experiences I have as a writer (not to be mistaken for my experience as a writer, i.e. how many books I've written, etc); the pleasure and the pain, the joy and the grief, the satisfaction and the frustration, the magic and the reality - have I left anything out, oh yeah, the rejection, rejection and more rejection, the humiliation and the embarrassment, the jealousy and the resentment - that pretty much covers it, except for why I do it which perhaps I'll realize along the way. Are you totally confused? Good, let's begin.
I came to this book, The Writer's Process, Getting Your Brain in Gear, with extreme
prejudice. I find it hard to believe creativity can be taught. After reading Anne Janzer's book I still feel that way, but she's made me believe that creativity can be nurtured and maybe even enhanced.
Janzer's approach is scientific and it's backed by experts in the field of psychology and cognitive study. But understanding the mental process doesn't tell us how to activate it. What the author sets about to do is "label groups of mental processes that we can activate when needed."
The book is divided into three parts.
The first part, The Inner Gears, describes how the brain works using the term Scribe for areas of focus, discipline and writing craft. Processes like intuition, creativity and empathy are the domain of The Muse.
The second part, The Process, Start to Finish, sets forth and elaborates on the seven steps of the writing process beginning with research and ending with publication. The chapter on Revision in itself is worth the price of the book.
Part three, Writers in the World, has some practical advice on how to address problems all writers face including finding time to write, dealing with criticism, and working through writer's block.
If you're a creative person, specifically a writer, you're likely incorporating many of the suggestions Janzer puts forth in The Writer's Process. If that's the case this book will not be so much revelation as a validation.
And what's wrong with that?