I’ve been writing for more than half my life time. My first publication credit was in 1994. When I got started, in university, I read voraciously about the process of creative writing. I spoke with other writers. I belonged to writing groups and critiquing groups. Over the years, I’ve developed my own process and found what works for me. I no longer read Writer’s Digest nor do I belong to any writing groups. Now part of this is because I am not writing fiction as regularly as I once was – I’m mostly writing for RPGs or keeping this and SEP active – but also I’ve learned much about my craft, and find discussions of process less and less helpful.
But that doesn’t mean my process is set or perfect.
When M. Harold Page offered me a courtesy copy of his book Storyteller Tools, I accepted it and had a quick look at the table of contents. Some of the chapter headings piqued my curiosity, and mostly I dipped into it on the bus, waiting for my daughters, anytime I had time on my hands and my cell nearby. I think I’ve gone through most of the book, but not in the standard manner.
And I have found utility in it.
I’m not going to say that it changed my process or approached my craft, but it did make me consider different methods, it made me re-think my assumptions, and it inspired me. Thinking about writing is a good way to get back into writing.
I think this book has a lot more value to new writers, people like me back in the early 90s, having gone as far as the creative spark can take them and ready to get serious about figuring out how to find their own path. It was books like this one that gave me ideas, got me to try out structures and methods and find out what worked for me.
Having said that, there is value in this book for writers like myself, who have a process, and who have researched and tested methods and approaches before. This book will help to re-examine your process and if you’ve had some issues with getting words on the page, reading about the process – at least for me – helps to get you back to putting butt in chair and fingers on keyboard.
I would recommend Storyteller Tools to writers, especially those who are trying to find a process that works for them, but also to those who have a process but are always willing to re-consider their approach.
You can find Storyteller Tools here.
You can find out more about M. Harold Page here.