Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Thursday Review, Writing for the Soul

A couple of weeks ago I introduced you to my guest blogger and writing buddy, Lynn Blackburn. Well, you're in for a treat. Lynn has agreed to continue to entertain us with her wit and wisdom the first Thursday of every month. Join me in welcoming her to The Write Conversation family!

Writing for the Soul
by Jerry B. Jenkins

I thought writing a review of Writing for the Soul by Jerry B. Jenkins would be easy.

Until I opened it and found the list of authors who recommended Writing for the Soul. I experienced several days of mind-numbing terror. What can I add? Let’s face it, when Francine Rivers, James Scott Bell and Angela Hunt (along with many others) say you should read the book . . . well, it won’t hurt my feelings if you stop reading now to save yourself some time and energy and go buy the book.

But, as you are a glutton for punishment and have continued reading, I’ll tell you that when I picked the book from its spot on my desk (along with my slowly growing collection of writing books) I intended to skim through it to refresh my memory and then whip up a review.

Instead, I read it straight through. And I learned more this time than I did the first two times I read it.

Writing for the Soul was the first “writing” book I read. I found it at my local library a week or so after completing the first draft of my first novel and a day or so after it occurred to me that it might be a good idea to learn something about writing if I was going to be a writer. (Yes, you read that right and yes, I know that I’ve gone about everything as backward as possible.)

After finishing Writing for the Soul, I faced the harsh reality that I knew nothing about writing and that my first draft was riddled with errors that would mark me for the amateur I was.

I was disappointed, but not hopeless because the solutions for many of my mistakes were contained in Writing for the Soul. This book covers a wide-range of topics, from the importance of selecting the right POV to the importance of sitting in the right chair.

Writing for the Soul is funny, the wisdom doled out in manageable slices, and the hard realities sandwiched between entertaining anecdotes from Jerry B. Jenkins’ career. This is a book I’ll read at least once a year. And I’ll pull it off the shelf for years to come anytime I need a quick refresher course or to be reminded that while writing is a sacred calling it’s also hard work—even for Jerry B. Jenkins.


  1. Well . . . off I go to the bookstore :)
    Thanks for sharing this Edie.

  2. Edie,
    I am almost finished with "Writing for the Soul." I have absolutely enjoyed reading Mr. Jenkins' book. His humor runs through and through while offering great advice. One of my first questions about writing was answered within, as well. I highly recommend it, too.