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FEBRUARY 2005

> ON WRITING (2002) | jason jordan

Needless to say, Stephen King is arguably the most well known author of the present day. The man has consistently churned out novel after novel, and many of his books have migrated to the big screen (The Green Mile, Dreamcatcher, Hearts in Atlantis). King is renowned for his horror and science fiction, but the instructions he relays in On Writing (Pocket, 2002) are essentially universal in nature; in other words, tips usually apply to all forms and genres of the craft.

The book in question is divided into various sections. To put it bluntly, half of the piece is comprised of King's memoir, which iterates how he first delved into writing himself, and the other half is a cohesive body of writing tips. With this particular full-length, King isolates an audience from inception. Those of you who wish to read a glorified biography will relish the first half of the compendium, but this book is mainly geared towards writers themselves or people very interested in the writing process. I can't imagine Average Joe/Jane selecting On Writing over Bag of Bones, and it's probably not realistic to say that they would. So, proceed with caution if you don't consider yourself a writer.

As mentioned earlier, the first half of the book is a straightforward memoir. Easy enough. Its counterpart, however, is a lengthy discussion about select tools that King uses when he writes. Furthermore, King pens examples and improves them right before our eyes by utilizing said tools. Not unlike other prominent authors, King has his own set of idiosyncratic pet peeves and we're specifically aware of those by the close of this book, subtitled A Memoir of the Craft. If you're a fan of King and consider yourself close to the art of writing, definitely purchase this read; it will perhaps shed light on blurry subjects, and maybe remedy fictional situations that your characters have been written in to. If you aren't a writer, though, I'd stick with King's fiction. In any case, if you desire to glean something both memorable and pertinent, Stephen King's work is not a bad place to start.

> BIOGRAPHY | about the author

Jason Jordan has performed at the Old Louisville Coffeehouse and was the winner of Decomposition Magazine's first creative writing contest in July 2004 with his piece, UNTITLED. His work has recently appeared in The Giles Corey Press and THE EDWARD SOCIETY.