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5.0 out of 5 stars excellent for use on ooodles of levels
the person who gave 'Wild Mind' a (1.) saying she's a Zen flying all over the country seems to be missing the boat big time and could use some therapy herself or something...besides Zens are suppose to fly all over the country with friends...thank God...gee wizards, lighten up...Natalie's humor, insight and wonderful practices are fun , playful (the only way to learn) and...
Published on Jan. 16 2003 by Umpqua Bank

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting read but not really a "how to write" book
After reading it twice, I think this book contains both positive and negative aspects. Basically, I've come to the conclusion that it's not a book on how to write. Instead, I view it as a memoir by a person with a more-or-less interesting life. At times, it makes for fascinating reading; other times, the stories and anecdotes fall really flat. The writing advice itself is...
Published on June 25 2003 by Marianne


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting read but not really a "how to write" book, June 25 2003
This review is from: Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life (Paperback)
After reading it twice, I think this book contains both positive and negative aspects. Basically, I've come to the conclusion that it's not a book on how to write. Instead, I view it as a memoir by a person with a more-or-less interesting life. At times, it makes for fascinating reading; other times, the stories and anecdotes fall really flat. The writing advice itself is sparse though there are several decent exercises to cure writers' block. Goldberg is a remarkable writer who has wisdom and wit, but I expected more actual writing *technique* from this book and was therefore disappointed.
By the way, I pity the narrow-minded reviewers who bash her for writing about her relationships with women. I've read plenty of books by heterosexual authors who constantly mention their spouses, and I don't see readers accusing them of throwing it in their faces.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A Disappointment after Bones, July 31 2001
By 
Rosemary Bannon Tyksinski "www.rosemarys-offi... (Seattle, WA United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life (Paperback)
While some will love this book, I found it terribly disappointing after reading Writing Down the Bones -- which I loved. Perhaps this is because Bones was so wonderful this could not compete. I found the writing in Wild Mind cloying and self-indulgent -- to the point of irritation. There are many more inspiring writing books than this. Don't bother with Wild Mind unless you want if for its great cover art!
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5.0 out of 5 stars excellent for use on ooodles of levels, Jan. 16 2003
By 
Umpqua Bank "jcjs33" (rogue river, or. USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life (Paperback)
the person who gave 'Wild Mind' a (1.) saying she's a Zen flying all over the country seems to be missing the boat big time and could use some therapy herself or something...besides Zens are suppose to fly all over the country with friends...thank God...gee wizards, lighten up...Natalie's humor, insight and wonderful practices are fun , playful (the only way to learn) and freeing...her analogy of writing to sex and living i love...i got this little gem in Ashland, Oregon...just jumped out as books do...people who die with the most toys, win...nope...people who make people laugh and who can laugh, win...Natalie does that so well as she shares her fullness and wisdom...practical guide to life, sex, humor and writing...i don't care if the 'sour puss' writing the review can write better or worse than Natalie or me...that's not the point...better hasn't a thing to do with writing...Natalie can write, write well, share well, write for everyone and herself and helps so many with practical suggestions about living a full and fulfilling life...this isn't just a book on basic writing...this is a grand philosophy book...nice, compact, practical, fun, hands on, "Be Here Now
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5.0 out of 5 stars A very freeing and instructive book, Sept. 5 2002
This review is from: Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life (Paperback)
I have been a writer since I was a child but never realized that "being a writer" had little to do with what you write or even how often. It's a way of looking at the world, and Natalie Goldberg captures it and conveys it in a way that (finally) legitimized the writer within for me. For that, I'll be eternally grateful. When people used to say to me, "You analyze too much," I'd feel bad about myself, but now I say to myself, if to no one else, "Yes, that's what makes me a good writer!"
Not only did she free the writer-person within me when I read this book, but she gave me new ways to practice writing from an angle I hadn't thought of. I am not good with descriptions of scenes and, in fact, hate even reading them, but in order to get better at it, I did her little exercises and had fun and sharpened my skills at the same time. (...which reminds me, I need to do them again.)
I reread portions of this book several times a year and I always keep an extra couple of copies of it on hand to give to other writers and wanna-be writers. I hope it never goes out of print!
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2.0 out of 5 stars What I think, Dec 7 2001
By 
George (Adrian, Mi USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life (Paperback)
Natalie Goldberg's Wild Minds: Living the Writers Life is full of useful information along with ideas of how to guide yourself to the point of disciplined writing. She, in her short 62 chapters, explains how a writer lives and ideas to remember while writing. One useful point of information was to always set yourself in that place or what about a place similar to what you are sitting in at the current moment. By doing this you will add more emotion and description and your readers will take more notice in the details to feel as if they are there also.
She includes, at the end of almost every chapter, a try this section. In the try this sections, she offers skill building, if you chose to follow them. Some will take only 5 minutes, some up to two hours to complete if you are dedicated. These are a bit helpful; however, most of them seem to try to overcome writer's block.
Although this book contains many to live by rules of writing, it is more biographical if anything. You learn about her life than you do skills of how to be a good writer. If you are already a writer or thinking of becoming one, this book is an excellent choice. She offers morale and encouragement throughout her stories with her own hardships and realizations. However, if you are looking for a book to help teach you how to be a good writer, then you should look elsewhere.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Has a place of honor on my reference shelf., April 28 2001
By 
Bonnie (Los Angeles, CA, United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life (Paperback)
Many books on writing are strictly craft books. Some are about becoming "pro" - dealing with editors, managing your PR. This is not about that. WILD MIND is about practicing the art of writing and about the life of one writer, Natalie Goldberg. But is so clearly instructive, so vividly stimulating, that reading it will automatically boost your own creative fires, and very likely your output. So...in its way, it is a surprisingly practical book.
Like her earlier WRITING DOWN THE BONES, Goldberg has created another wonderful resource for the writer at any stage of his/her craft. She's evolved, refined and developed the exercises presented in Bones, as well as added new ideas. A favorite of mine is to read work aloud often. She writes: "Write, read,write, read. You become less attached to whether it is good or bad. 'I wrote this now I'll read it, no big deal.' " She gives guidelines for working in a writer's group, and has many "try this" suggestions sandwiched in between anecdotal moments from her life which enrich and strengthen us.
As a professional writer for 25 years, I personally learned from this book mid career and continue to revisit eleven years later. A must have for any writer.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Wild Mind: A Book Review, Dec 7 2000
By 
Ryan Seipke (Adrian, MI USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life (Paperback)
Wild Mind: A Book Review Writer's block. It can be a mind numbing and frustrating experience. Wild Mind: Living The Writer's Life written by Natalie Goldberg, a Zen Buddhist and author of Writing Down The Bones, helps writers realize that writing is all in their mind and not the pen. No matter who you are, Wild Mind is a book you should have on your bookshelf. The book is written in the first person and is an extremely fast read. The chapters are short-sometimes one or two pages-and tease you to continue reading. Throughout the 238 pages there are many "Try This" sections. They are lessons she uses to help people write better. Don't just breeze over these sections. Give them a shot. They're fun and exciting. Wild Mind also focuses on getting rid of what Goldberg calls "Monkey Mind." Monkey Mind is annoying and I hate it. It's that little critic that says I stink at writing. "So our job as writers is to not diddle around our whole lives in the dot [monkey mind] but to take one big step out of it and sink into the big sky and write from there. Let yourself live in something that is already rightfully yours-your own wild mind" (33). This book was an extra special treat for me to read because it mentioned Buddhism. I've been studied Buddhism for an entire semester.. While reading Wild Mind, I found an answer to a test question.. I was dumfounded. The funny thing is that if I had read that section in Wild Mind earlier, I would have gotten the question right.
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5.0 out of 5 stars sudden outpouring of words, Sept. 3 2000
This review is from: Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life (Paperback)
I've always had this feeling that I wanted to be a writer. I've even tried to do it a few times, but I always felt that I was forcing it. Some ten days ago, however, I dug out an old empty book that I had hidden away, tared out the three pages I had written on from a time I had tried to write three years ago, and started. This wasn't totally arbitrary. I was about to go on a vacation that would involve a lot of driving, driving I wasn't doing, so this would give me something to do. I'd been writing a lot more in the past year, actually - crazy long e-mails to a couple people that I don't think I could live without any more - but I never seriously thought about writing as anything more than that form of personal communication. But I'm living through a sudden outpouring of words - that hundred-and-sixty-page blank book I cracked open ten days ago? Almost full. And I have Nat Goldberg to thank for that. I spotted this book in - of all places - the gift shop of the Ansel Adams Gift Shop at Yosemite National Park. Who would have expected to find it there? I started reading it that night. I'm still not done, even though I've been with it on and off for five or six days, because I keep stopping at Nat's "try this" exercises - carefully composed to get the creative juices flowing - and after reading for ten minutes, I'll spend an hour writing. Your mileage may vary. If you've been writing for longer than I have, you might not get quite the same inspiration. If Zen annoys you, you won't find the book quite as interesting. But among the best fifteen-dollar purchases I've ever made.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Raw, Practical, Brilliant Book..., Aug. 11 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life (Paperback)
I read "Wild Mind" for the first time 2 weeks ago. Natalie Goldberg is a phenomenal writer who exposes herself in this book about writing, which, consequently makes it even more enjoyable to read. The book contains some ideas on Zen and everyday living, specifically applied to the context of writing. Throughout the book are many "Try This" writing exercises designed to let creativity flow through the mind, hand, and pen of the writer. It is an inspirational and encouraging read. I was so excited by this book that I have begun to write again, and not only that, but I immediately went out and bought "Banana Rose"(which she mentions in Wild Mind) and "Writing Down the Bones" and finished all 3 books in a week--because I LOVED THEM. Goldberg is brilliant as a writer and you can be too if you follow her advice.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Raw, Practical, Brilliant Book..., Aug. 11 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life (Paperback)
I read "Wild Mind" for the first time 2 weeks ago. Natalie Goldberg is a phenomenal writer who exposes herself in this book about writing, which, consequently makes it even more enjoyable to read. The book contains some ideas on Zen and everyday living, specifically applied to the context of writing. Throughout the book are many "Try This" writing exercises designed to let creativity flow through the mind, hand, and pen of the writer. It is an inspirational and encouraging read. I was so excited by this book that I have begun to write again, and not only that, but I immediately went out and bought "Banana Rose"(which she mentions in Wild Mind) and "Writing Down the Bones" and finished all 3 books in a week--because I LOVED THEM. Goldberg is brilliant as a writer and you can be too if you follow her advice.
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Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life
Wild Mind: Living the Writer's Life by Natalie Goldberg (Paperback - Oct. 1 1990)
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