Book Blog: Zen in the Art of Writing by Ray Bradbury

For Christmas, my wife got me Ray Bradbury's Zen in the Art of Writing: Essays on Creativity.

And let me tell you this: I've got The. Best. Wife. Ever. 
(for many reasons, one of which is that she buys me awesome books). 

Confession: I have a writer-crush on Ray Bradbury. He's one of my favorite authors and to be able to glean writing tidbits from him is an amazing experience. These essays are wild, inspiring, and stunningly beautiful. In this book, his style is so conversational I felt as though I was sitting on Venice Beach with him, just listening to a wise, passionate man talk about the thing he loves most in the world: writing. 

I do warn you, he doesn't go into things like the eight rules for plotting genre-defining Sci-Fi. Instead, he offers tidbits on subjects such as "How to Keep and Feed A Muse", where he lobs mind-blowers such as these: 

As soon as things get difficult, I walk away. That's the great secret of creativity. You treat ideas like cats: you make them follow you. If you try to approach a cat and pick it up, hell, it won't let you do it. You've got to say,"Well, to hell with you." And the cat says, "Wait a minute. He's not behaving the way most humans do." Then the cat follows you out of curiosity: "Well, what's wrong with you that you don't love me?"

Well, that's what an idea is. See? You just say, "Well, hell, I don't need depression. I don't need worry. I don't need to push." The ideas will follow me. Whey the're off-guard, and ready to be born, I'll turn around and grab them. 

I mean, BRILLIANT, right?

Another quote I've etched into my brain. 

I have come up with a new simile to describe myself lately. It can be yours.
Every morning I jump out of bed and step on a landmine. The landmine is me. 
After the explosion, I spend the rest of the day putting the pieces together. 
Now, it's your turn. Jump!

And there are a ton more where those came from. 

So what are you still doing here? Go get this book and READ!


Ray Bradbury is my favorite author, and yet I haven't read this book. Maybe it's jealousy.

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