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The Fiction Writer's Toolkit: A Guide to Writing Novels and Getting Published [Paperback]

Bob Mayer
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 17.81 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Book Description

Dec 1 1999
From the first, original idea you have for your novel, through writing your manuscript, to the book on the shelf in the bookstore and making a career out of writing novels, the Fiction Writer's Toolkit takes the reader on the entire creative journey in a very practical manner. This book was written over the course of ten years as the author went from newly published to multiple best-selling novelist under several pen names. Topics covered range from idea into story, point of view, where to start the novel, characters, submissions and queries, getting an agent, staying alive in the publishing business and dozens of others, all approached in a straight-forward and usable manner. This book lays out all the tools available to the writer and discusses their advantages and disadvantages so that the reader can master the craft of novel writing in his or her own unique way.

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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Every Aspiring Writer Should Read This May 22 2004
Format:Paperback
This is a book chocked full of practical advice based on hard-earned experience.
I bought this book from Bob at a writers conference in 2001, and have already got a copy of the follow-on version, "The Novel Writers Toolkit," from Writer Digest Books. I've read nearly every reputable book on writing, and Bob's is clearly the best.
Why? Because he focuses as much on the importance of What you are writing about as he does on How you write it. About one third of the book is about what it means to be a writer; the second third is devoted to the process--from what he calls the "original idea" to how that idea gets converted into a story. The final third of the book tells you how to market your book to agents and publishers.
Although he pulls no punches on how difficult it is to become a published writer, Bob makes it clear most writers just don't spend enough time up front thinking about their original idea and why anyone would be interested in it.
As an agent once said to me, "give me a meticulously written manuscript with a mediocre story, and I can't help you, but give me mediocre writing with a great story, and I'll get you published."
Was this review helpful to you?
3.0 out of 5 stars A guide for "do as I say not as I do" June 11 2002
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
There is a great deal of very good, basic information contained within this book. However, the typographical errors and the use of a repeated phrase over and over were distracting. As an example, on page 133 a sentence reads "My phone calls to his office went go unanswered". That is just one example.
The author also repeatedly tells the reader not to "beat it to death", and then goes on to use that phrase until it has been...sorry...beaten to death.
I found numerous instances where information was given and then in the next chapter, the same information would be repeated, sometimes paraphrased, sometimes not. Even with the information being good to know, reading it once is usually sufficient.
On the whole I did gain knowledge from the book although I now wish I had checked it out at the library instead of purchasing it.
Was this review helpful to you?
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Sept. 18 2001
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
For the new writer or someone who has been at the keyboard for years, this book takes one from the very beginning, the seed of the idea, through writing the book, marketing it, getting published, dealing with agents/editors, and surviving in the strange world of publishing. It reads like a journey as the author wrote it over a decade of writing for a living. Best book I've ever purchased for down to earth, basic instruction.
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Sept. 18 2001
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
For the new writer or someone who has been at the keyboard for years, this book takes one from the very beginning, the seed of the idea, through writing the book, marketing it, getting published, dealing with agents/editors, and surviving in the strange world of publishing. It reads like a journey as the author wrote it over a decade of writing for a living. Best book I've ever purchased for down to earth, basic instruction.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A guide for "do as I say not as I do" June 11 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
There is a great deal of very good, basic information contained within this book. However, the typographical errors and the use of a repeated phrase over and over were distracting. As an example, on page 133 a sentence reads "My phone calls to his office went go unanswered". That is just one example.
The author also repeatedly tells the reader not to "beat it to death", and then goes on to use that phrase until it has been...sorry...beaten to death.
I found numerous instances where information was given and then in the next chapter, the same information would be repeated, sometimes paraphrased, sometimes not. Even with the information being good to know, reading it once is usually sufficient.
On the whole I did gain knowledge from the book although I now wish I had checked it out at the library instead of purchasing it.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Every Aspiring Writer Should Read This May 22 2004
By Michael J. Jett - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This is a book chocked full of practical advice based on hard-earned experience.
I bought this book from Bob at a writers conference in 2001, and have already got a copy of the follow-on version, "The Novel Writers Toolkit," from Writer Digest Books. I've read nearly every reputable book on writing, and Bob's is clearly the best.
Why? Because he focuses as much on the importance of What you are writing about as he does on How you write it. About one third of the book is about what it means to be a writer; the second third is devoted to the process--from what he calls the "original idea" to how that idea gets converted into a story. The final third of the book tells you how to market your book to agents and publishers.
Although he pulls no punches on how difficult it is to become a published writer, Bob makes it clear most writers just don't spend enough time up front thinking about their original idea and why anyone would be interested in it.
As an agent once said to me, "give me a meticulously written manuscript with a mediocre story, and I can't help you, but give me mediocre writing with a great story, and I'll get you published."
5.0 out of 5 stars Bob Mayer provides a comprehesive guide June 11 2014
By Ray Holloway - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book was immensely helpful to me and help point me in the right direction to get my own writings in to the proper form for submission for publication. He breaks the whole process down for the reader explaining how to develop your idea, start the story, develop characters, plot, sub-plots, and create conflict to resolve itself at the climax. He then goes into the ins and outs of getting published, based on his own successful career and experiences. He writes with authority that comes from his own practical background and puts it down a an easy to understand manner. This book was a great help to me and I would recommend it to anyone interested in writing.
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