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Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life (Paperback)
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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • An essential volume for generations of writers young and old. The twenty-fifth anniversary edition of this modern classic will continue to spark creative minds for years to come. Anne Lamott is "a warm, generous, and hilarious guide through the writer’s world and its treacherous swamps" (Los Angeles Times).
“Superb writing advice…. Hilarious, helpful, and provocative.” —The New York Times Book Review
For a quarter century, more than a million readers—scribes and scribblers of all ages and abilities—have been inspired by Anne Lamott’s hilarious, big-hearted, homespun advice. Advice that begins with the simple words of wisdom passed down from Anne’s father—also a writer—in the iconic passage that gives the book its title:
“Thirty years ago my older brother, who was ten years old at the time, was trying to get a report on birds written that he’d had three months to write. It was due the next day. We were out at our family cabin in Bolinas, and he was at the kitchen table close to tears, surrounded by binder paper and pencils and unopened books on birds, immobilized by the hugeness of the task ahead. Then my father sat down beside him, put his arm around my brother’s shoulder, and said, ‘Bird by bird, buddy. Just take it bird by bird.’”
About the Author
ANNE LAMOTT is the author of the New York Times bestsellers Almost Everything; Hallelujah Anyway; Help, Thanks, Wow; Small Victories; Stitches; Some Assembly Required; Grace (Eventually); Plan B; Traveling Mercies; and Operating Instructions. She is also the author of seven novels, including Imperfect Birds and Rosie. A past recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and an inductee to the California Hall of Fame, she lives in Northern California.
“Superb writing advice. . . . Hilarious, helpful, and provocative.”
—The New York Times Book Review
“A warm, generous, and hilarious guide through the writer’s world and its treacherous swamps.”
—Los Angeles Times
“One of the funniest books on writing ever published.”
—The Christian Science Monitor
“A gift to all of us mortals who write or ever wanted to write. . . . Sidesplittingly funny, patiently wise and alternately cranky and kind—a reveille to get off our duffs and start writing now, while we still can.”
“Bird by Bird would be worth reading just for Lamott’s ele- gant, moving, and often-hilarious prose. But the advice she offers is just as fantastic as the style with which it’s delivered.”
“Anne Lamott understands better than anyone that writers need help. . . . She writes so well, in fact, that it’s hard to believe that she, too, has trouble with writing. That’s what’s so deeply comforting about this book.”
—The Wall Street Journal
“Deftly and honestly explores the mental challenges of being a writer. . . . Lamott’s advice is, simply put, invaluable.”
“[Lamott] uses her writing exercises or lessons as a way to help us more deeply understand ourselves and the human condition in all its messiness. If you’re looking for sense-making and meaning during this deeply destabilizing time, this book is timeless.”
—Elise Hu, TED Talks Daily
“Delight[s] with insight and descriptive acumen. This humorous, insightful, no-nonsense approach will remind novices why they are writing.”
“Offers unique inspiration. . . . An honest appraisal of what it takes to be a writer and why it matters so much.”