Love them or loathe them, there are plenty of books on writing advice out there to choose from. The one that is usually hailed as worthwhile is Stephen King’s On Writing. After being recommended it for the 1000000th time, I decided to finally pick it up.
Let me tell you, the 1000000 were right. This book is worth spending the time on. Part memoir, part pragmatic guide it is both intriguing and useful. It doesn’t feel overly prescriptive but at the same time you find yourself trusting Stephen King implicitly and wanting to take his advice. They are like little gems woven into the story of his own life, which makes it feel more like sitting down for coffee with someone you greatly admire rather than listening to a lecture (which unfortunately seems to be the guiding ethos of some writing books).
What I loved the most was that the advice that was given was incredibly practical and backed up by Stephen King’s own experiences in publishing quite the collection of books of his own. It was things that I could immediately start using in my own writing and know that I will be turning to again and again over the years.
Finally, On Writing was far funnier than I had ever anticipated. I actively enjoyed King’s writing and often didn’t feel like I was reading a non-fiction text at all. Laughing out-loud at something that is trying to teach me is the sign of a good book for me!