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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nancy Kress Rocks
Nancy Kress is an excellent teacher. I was one of her students at Clarion. But for writers who can't benefit from her teaching in person, they can read this book. I've been using it in my writing classes for two semesters and I love it.
Not only does she explain concepts clearly and concisely, but she has an excellent feel for presenting this information to the...
Published on Oct. 19 2003 by KTB

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6 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Too 'literary' in orientation
My first impression of this book was that I was reading an English professor's view on writing. If Nancy Kress isn't an English professor she certainly should be but, unfortunately, that particular profession is more of a hindrance than help to a writer of good popular fiction.
On finishing the book, this suspicion was sustained by her constant reference to works of...
Published on Oct. 31 2002 by Don R Waterman


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5.0 out of 5 stars Kress true to form, Dec 5 1999
This review is from: Elements of Fiction Writing - Beginnings, Middles & Ends (Paperback)
Nancy Kress offers a professional insight into the real hardware of fiction writing. This award winning author maintains the voice of a master instructor whom beginning writers avidly seek when questing for practical writing advice. Those who have valued her advice in popular writing periodicals will be treated to a book size serving of enlightening writing strategies. In a series of books that make the reader often blurt, "Of course why didn't I think of that?" Kress suggest and points out many invaluable tools which bring a work of fiction together from its beginning to the middle all the way to the end. Everything about this book is . . . well for lack of better description, just right; arguably the best writer on the nuts and bolts of writing in the most practical series on writing in print today, perfect.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vigorous, Enlightening, Aug. 29 2010
By 
Ben W. Mcfarlane "music industry hack" (Miscellaneous, Ontario, Canada) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Elements of Fiction Writing - Beginnings, Middles & Ends (Paperback)
Kress's vigorous prose amplifies her uncommon wisdom. "Beginnings, Middles & Ends," is as fine a fiction writing manual as any.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very useful, April 20 2010
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Diane C (Val-d'Or, Canada) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Elements of Fiction Writing - Beginnings, Middles & Ends (Paperback)
Very good book for the price. Useful advice, although not extensive, and easy to read.
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6 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Too 'literary' in orientation, Oct. 31 2002
By 
Don R Waterman (Halfway, Missouri United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Elements of Fiction Writing - Beginnings, Middles & Ends (Paperback)
My first impression of this book was that I was reading an English professor's view on writing. If Nancy Kress isn't an English professor she certainly should be but, unfortunately, that particular profession is more of a hindrance than help to a writer of good popular fiction.
On finishing the book, this suspicion was sustained by her constant reference to works of classical literature in examples. 'Classics' are, by my definition, works others think you SHOULD read, rather than those you would actually be likely to enjoy reading. Here are the other impressions I got from Beginnings, Middles, & Ends:
* There are several helpful hints and gems of writing wisdom in this book... but you'll have to wade a lot of slush to get to them.

* There is something inherently vague about her instructions for story writing. Apparently, this is because she is a 'go-with-the-flow' writer rather than someone who plans carefully beforehand. Would you buy a house from a contractor who planned to 'wing it' and then yank out all the plumbing and wiring if it didn't fit properly? Would you want to waste time and effort writing that way?
* I learned much more about the author from reading this than I did about writing fiction. Even though I am an avid fan of science fiction (30+ years of reading it) and that is apparently her genre of choice, after reading this book I feel quite certain I would not enjoy her style of writing... without ever having read a word of her SF.
In short, if you are looking for a real road map through the forest of fiction writing try 'The Marshall Plan for Novel Writing' (Evan Marshall) and 'Characters & Viewpoint' (Orson Scott Card) instead. If you are a sensitive connoisseur of literary art 'Beginnings, Middles & Ends' is definitely your book. But don't expect me to read your efforts.
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Elements of Fiction Writing - Beginnings, Middles & Ends
Elements of Fiction Writing - Beginnings, Middles & Ends by Nancy Kress (Paperback - March 15 1999)
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