Thursday, March 1, 2012

Thursday Review—Unleash the Writer Within

A guest post by Lynn Blackburn

For my first guest post here at The Write Conversation, I reviewed a talk given by Cec Murphey at our local Cross Way Christian Supply. I was impressed by his approachable manner and his willingness to share his writing knowledge with us.

He’s written more than 120 books and they’ve sold millions of copies. So when he turned his attention to writing a book for writers, it would be reasonable to expect him to provide us with a treasure trove of technique. A masterpiece of method. A page-by-page plan for writing a best seller.
But that’s not what he did.

He did something far better.

He opened the door, not to his writing methods, but to his writer’s soul. Unleash the Writer Within is twenty-seven brief chapters, each ending with a different aphorism for writers.
(Side note: I’ll be honest. I consider myself to be a person with an above-average vocabulary, but I had no clue what an aphorism was. So, just in case anyone else is wondering, an aphorism is a “pithy observation that contains a general truth”).

Here are a few…
#16 - My daydreams teach me what’s important to me. My first task is to pay attention to them.

#12 - The more I know who I am and like who I am, the truer my writing voice and the more faithfully I honor that voice.

#22 - I’ve spent much of my life being like others. Now I want to spend time being like the real me.

With stunning transparency, Cec Murphey covers topics near and dear to the writer’s heart. How do I handle writer’s block and my inner critic? What do I do when my writer friends are experiencing success and I’m not? What if no one likes what I write? Am I a real writer if I don’t write every day?

There are chapters on daydreaming, fear, finding your voice, and discovering your rhythm.

Unleash the Writer Within reads more like conversation than textbook. It’s a chat with Cec—a chat where he asks probing questions and shares his experience, not so you’ll write the way he does, but so you can be free to write the story God has given you.

He begins with a question—Why do you write?

Do you know?

The answer is important, and it’s the first step on your journey to Unleash the Writer Within.

Don't forget to join the conversation!

Lynn Huggins Blackburn has been telling herself stories since she was five and finally started writing them down. She blogs about faith, family, and her writing journey on her blog Out of the Boat. Lynn is a member of the Jerry B. Jenkins Christian Writers Guild and the Word Weavers, Greenville. She lives in South Carolina where she hangs out with three lively children, one fabulous man, and a cast of imaginary characters who find their way onto the pages of her still unpublished novels. She drinks a lot of coffee.


  1. Wow, sounds like an amazing and encouraging book. I'll have to look into getting my hands on a copy...

  2. Ooh! I am buying that this weekend. Thanks for the review, Lynn. I can't wait to read Cec's wisdom on being a writer.

  3. I have but one chapter to go to finish Cec's book. I've never met him, but was also a bit stunned (and delighted) by his transparency. He hit on subjects, as you mentioned, that I've never seen approached in similar books. It was exactly what I needed.

    I look forward to meeting him now more than ever! Thanks, Lynn.

  4. This sounds like a great book! Thanks for the interesting review, Lynn. Sounds like a writers book with soul!


  5. Thanks for the comments!
    Lindsay, Alycia,& Sue - this is definitely one to add to the library!
    Cathy - I know what you mean - I read a LOT of writing books and this one is unlike any other - in a good way!

  6. I ordered this off Amazon this week - can't wait!

  7. Great review for a great book! I devoured it and now I want to go back and savor it.

    Like you, I was encouraged--and sometimes shocked--by his transparency. But that's where good writing begins.

  8. Thanks for a great review, Lynn. Now I'm getting on Amazon and ordering a copy for myself.

  9. I adore Cec Murphey, as do so many other writers. I've never had the honor of meeting him in person, but I have chatted with him through email. He is a gem. Can't wait to get this book. Be sure to check out his blog for writers, also. It's called Cec Murphey's Writer to Writer. This has been so helpful to me. Thanks Edie and Lyn for a great review.

  10. Susan, Vonda, Cynthia, & Nan - Thanks for commenting! Vonda - definitely one to savor! Susan & Cynthia - happy reading! Nan - Thanks for mentioning his blog! I follow him on Twitter too... :-)

  11. Ohhh, I'm gonna' get that one. I've had the priviledge of meeting Cec at the Florida Christian Writers Conference. He is very genuine, generous and kind. Thanks so much!