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Book Reviews
January, 2008

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Book Reviews - December
For only the best in how-to
By  Rowdy Rhodes and Stephanie Elliott

une into IN reviews for the best of How-To books about writing -- all genres -- from high adventure to haiku, from fact to fiction, cookbooks to commentary and much, much more. Always check IN to see what's in. We only publish the best and our rating scale below is based upon the values of the three Es: Ease-of-Read, Educational, and Entertaining.

If you have a how-to write book that you would like us to read and possibly write a review about (we only publish reviews of books that we deem are best of the best) please send it to us. Our snail mail address is located in our 'About' area.

Title: The Renegade Writer, 2nd Edition
Author: Linda Formichelli and Diana Burrell
Publisher: Marion Street Press
ISBN: 1933338008
Reviewer: Rowdy Rhodes
IN Rating:

Review: The second edition of The Renegade Writer is now available. It's true this is a Totally Unconventional Guide To Freelance Writing and the first edition has already helped thousands of freelance writers break free of the standard rules of the industry and thrive by doing so.

Now the second edition picks up where the first left off and contains two important improvements. First, a dozen more career-wreaking rules are smashed, further freeing writers to succeed. Second, 10 thriving renegade writers are profiled, each telling a success story and providing tips for others.

The Renegade Writer, 2nd Edition is an even more valuable resource than the first. New writers and veterans alike will be inspired by the unconventional advice on getting into new markets, finding more writing work, and how to make more money doing it.

Reviewer Bio: Rowdy Rhodes is Site Director of the Freelance Writing Organization International and General Manager of Inkwell Newswatch (IN)

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If you like this review, take a look at 'Our Members Library Of Recommended Reading' for books that have made a significant difference in our members' writing careers.

Title: About Writing: 7 Essays, 4 Letters & 5 Interviews
Author: Samuel R. Delany
Publisher: Wesleyan University Press
ISBN 0-8195-6715-9 cloth; 0-8195-6716-7 paper
Reviewer: Stephanie Elliott

IN Rating:

Review: In this fine book, prminent author Samuel R. Delany writes about his own experience as a writer and writing teacher of 35 years. He addresses challenges he has met in his own writing, as well as challenges his students face.

He also calls on writers to break from traditional structures in their writing and to seek new ways of seeing and explaining the world.

Delany combines advice on practicing the art of fiction with his views on the state of the contemporary novel and the nature of literary reputations and how they are formed and upheld. The result is a revelation: of how great fiction is created, how the writer's image influences the perception of his/her work, and how it fits into today's world -- valuable information for any writer trying to find a home for their work in today's competitive literary marketplace.

Delany begins by explaining what "good" writing is; and how to get rid of clutter, design a good plot and create interesting characters. He shares teachings that have worked in his courses and discusses the magic that transforms "good" writing to "talented" writing, such as how to listen to sound and rhythm and cultivate rhetorical awareness.

As a teacher, he is inspiring, demanding and meticulous, and About Writing is as close as one can get to Delany's writing courses without entering his classroom.

Samuel R. Delany has won the William Whitehead Memorial Award for a lifetime's contribution to gay and lesbian literature. He has also been recognized with both Hugo and Nebula awards, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Darkroom Black Students Collective at Harvard University. Delany is currently a professor of English and creative writing at Temple University.

Reviewer Bio: Stephanie Elliott is a freelance book reviewer and works at Wesleyan University Press Email Website

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If you like this review, take a look at 'Our Members Library Of Recommended Reading' for books that have made a significant difference in our members' writing careers.

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© Freelance Writing Organization - International 1999-2049

Book Reviews
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Bald Ego
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Writer’s Block
The path to inspiration starts
Upon the trails we’ve known;
Each writer’s block is not a rock,
But just a stepping stone.

Poetry Is Not
Penned to the page
Waiting for us to admire.
It is only a lonely thought
Caught by tears on fire.

Silent Echoes
A quiet rhyme upon a page
Is what a poet gives;
Some gentle words whispered in trust
To see if memory lives.

Bard From Deadlines
What makes a poem finally work
Is not the time it takes;
It’s how the poet used the muse
To prophet from mistakes.

Be Mused
The art and craft of poetry
Are not so far apart;
The craft comes from the cunning,
The rest comes from the heart.

Fine Vintage
Don’t plant your poem on the page
As though you’re hanging drapes;
It’s shape and flow should come and grow
Like wild summer grapes.

Getting It Write
Writers write what they know best,
Their passions, fears, and dreams;
Writers rarely write about
What other call their “themes.”

Double Vision
A writer’s life is paradox,
It’s more than what it seems;
We write of our reality,
The one inside our dreams.

The echo of a promise,
The thunder of a sigh,
The music of a memory,
A child asking why.

Letter Perfect
Twenty six symbols arranged on a page
Can send a soul to heaven or torment it with rage,
Can free a fragile world or hold it in its net--
The power and the magic of the mighty alphabet.

The Write of Passage
The jump from writing just for fun
To getting paid for it
Begins when you first realize
You know you’ll never quit.

It is not the magic of his wings
That sets us free from our bond.
It is the muse within ourselves
That lets our words lift us beyond.

Photo Poet
Consider your mind the darkroom,
Consider your life the lens,
Consider your eye the camera
On whose focus the poem depends.

Rising Moon
A poem is a rising moon
Shining on the sea,
An afterglow of all we know,
Of all we hope to be.

Star Light
Writing a poem,
Reaching a star,
In making good art
We find who we are.

Spider Web
A poem is a spider web
Spun with words of wonder,
Woven lace held in place
By whispers made of thunder.

The final draft upon the screen,
At last my poem’s through;
A verse of only four short lines--
I rewrote twenty-two!

Read All Of Charles Ghigna's Poetry at

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