A creativity memoir more than just it’s title

Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Waterson

I recently finished, for the second time, Stephen King’s memoir of the craft of writing, titled On Writing. I was struck with very similar feelings to those felt after my first reading of the book (which is significant in and of itself). While reading any book on the specifics of writing sounds like a dry prospect (Elements of Style anyone?) this book reads more like a manual on the creative process. As someone who went to art school, I spent years being hammered with ways to facilitate the creative process. Stephen King does a better job in the pages of this book of addressing that process than the majority of my four college years. While he speaks through the guise of the writing process his musing on his own thoughts and methods of working make a great reference source for anyone attempting to access that side of themselves. He also uses this book to tell us more about himself and his life leading up to his success as a writer. Personally I had a greater appreciation for his material after reading this book, and I refer back to it in my own creative attempts as well.

Some of the specifics of the craft and process that he addresses are work space, accessing your own creativity and style, suggestions on mechanics, suggestions on seeking publication and representation, as well as personal tales of his life as an author.

On Writing cover

I would highly recommend this book for anyone who is an author (professional or personal), artist (professional or personal), musician (professional or personal), or even just a fan of King’s work. It is also worth the extra search and time to seek out the audio version, as King reads the book himself and his pursuasive ideas come through all the clearer from the author’s own mouth.