Many Genres, One Craft: Lessons in Writing Popular Fiction by Michael A. Arnzen
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
There's a certain kind of blog that, for SEO purposes, hosts frequent guest posts around whatever its theme is. Those guest posts are often poorly-executed statements of the blindingly obvious, there only to fill up space and increase keyword density.
Unfortunately, I felt that some of the contributions to this book fell into the same trap. There are sixty chapters in all, none of them very long, which means that they're also not in much depth. If there were one or two good points in each chapter, that would be OK, though not really what I was looking for--I want something that goes into depth on intermediate to advanced topics in writing craft, not another restatement of the basics. However, a few of the contributions don't even have much to say that would be helpful to a beginner, and some of them also make headdesk-worthy simple writing errors (mostly homonyms). These are graduates of the Seton Hill MFA in Popular Fiction, which doesn't fill me with confidence in the value of the course. (Of course, it isn't setting out to teach "how to write valuable, insightful nonfiction". The graduates may write perfectly fine popular fiction, and homonym errors are hardly rare even among award-winning authors. Still, such skills do matter.)
Did not finish.
View all my reviews