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On Writing Well 30th Anniversary Edition: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction [Paperback]

William Zinsser
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
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Book Description

April 27 2006 On Writing Well

On Writing Well has been praised for its sound advice, its clarity, and its warmth of style. It is a book for anybody who wants to learn how to write, whether about people or places, science and technology, business, sports, the arts, or about yourself. Its principles and insights have made it a cherished resource for several generations of writers and students.

This revised 30th anniversary edition contains a new introduction and a new chapter on how to write a family history or a memoir.

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On Writing Well 30th Anniversary Edition: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction + Keys to Great Writing
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Product Description

About the Author

William Zinsser is a writer, editor and teacher. He began his career with the New York Herald Tribune and has been a longtime contributor to leading magazines. His 17 books include Writing to Learn; Mitchell & Ruff; Spring Training; American Places; Easy to Remember: The Great American Songwriters and Their Songs; and most recently Writing About Your Life. During the 1970s he taught writing at Yale, where he was master of Branford College. He now teaches at the New School, in New York, his hometown, and at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By SlowCooker Uncle Ben TOP 1000 REVIEWER
As noted by other reviewers, the book lacks a lot on instructions but deserves considerable merit for its illustrative content.

The book contains many excerpts from known and respected authors. While these examples are good and can put you in the 'write' frame of mind, I was expecting more, much more, in terms of intructionnal content and format,perhaps somethink like "Keys to Great Writing" by Stephen Wilbers.

For those of you who are looking for instructions per se, "The Elements of Style" by William Strunk and E.B. White; and "Keys to Great Writing" are much better choices,in my view.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Inspirational Jan. 7 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
It is less of a manual and more of an inspirational guide with examples of writers trying to find their way to and through a subject. The style is very readable and makes the idea of writing a memoir or tackling any subject more accessible to all of us who feel we have a story to tell.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Must for Those Who Take Their Writings Seriously Sept. 11 2014
By Eddie Chu TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book is concise and easy to use. I use the instructions in this book in everything I write. For example, the instructions teach me to review what I write and often trim down the number of words by 20% while strengthening the impact. For those who take their writings serious, I can't imagine a better tutor.

Those who take the advice seriously will increase the clarity and impact of their words.

Highly recommended!
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Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I bought this book for one chapter - writing about one's family. But after reading that I flipped back to the beginning and enjoyed the entire book. Zinsser expresses his thoughts clearly and his examples are entertaining. There are many books about writing, but this deserves space in your reading list and book shelf!
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Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I was never really interested in language or writing. I thought of it as a utility. I picked it up because I saw it recommended by John Gruber on the dairingfireball, and man I am glad I did.

The title of the book describes it perfectly.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Informative Read Aug. 12 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
Beautiful and eloquently written by Zinsser. His descriptions are largely based on his own writings and experiences. An informative read for non fiction writers in particular.
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5.0 out of 5 stars needed April 16 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Went on a business writing course and the instructor said this my bible and it is great used it already
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