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The Art of Fiction: Notes on Craft for Young Writers Paperback – June 4, 1991

4.4 out of 5 stars 352 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"It will fascinate anyone interested in how fiction gets put together.  For the young writer it will become a necessary handbook, a stern judge, an encouraging friend... In the first half of the book, Gardner investigated just what fiction is.  In the second half, he treats specific technical matters. The Art of Fiction is filled with lecture counsel, wise encouragement." -John L'Heureux, The New York Times Book Review

"A densely packed book of advice to all writers, not just young ones... It is serious, provocative, and funny, and I recommend it to anyone who cares about literature."- Margaret Manning, The Boston Globe

"He lays out virtually everything a person might want to know [about] how to say it, with good and bad examples and judgments falling like autumn leaves in a November storm." -William McPherson, The Washington Post

"The next best thing to graduate workshop in fiction writing. Drawing on examples from Homer to Kafka to Joyce Carol Oates, Gardner unravels the mysteries of plot, sentence structure, diction, and point of view." - Book-of-the-Month Club News

From the Inside Flap

ardner was famous for his generosity to young writers, and (this book) is his . . . gift to them. The Art of Fiction will fascinate anyone interested in how fiction gets put together. For the young writer, it will become a necessary handbook, a stern judge, an encouraging friend."--The New York Times Book Review.

Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Vintage; Reissue edition (June 4, 1991)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 240 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0679734031
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0679734031
  • Reading age ‏ : ‎ 14 - 17 years
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 7.8 ounces
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 5.18 x 0.62 x 8.03 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.4 out of 5 stars 352 ratings

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John Gardner (1933–1982) was born in Batavia, New York. His critically acclaimed books include the novels Grendel, The Sunlight Dialogues, and October Light, for which he received the National Book Critics Circle Award, as well as several works of nonfiction and criticism such as On Becoming a Novelist. He was also a professor of medieval literature and a pioneering creative writing teacher whose students included Raymond Carver and Charles Johnson.

Customer reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5
352 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

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Top reviews from other countries

Amazon Customer
3.0 out of 5 stars Knows his stuff, but written in a flowery overblown style.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 11, 2019
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Manisha Malhotra
2.0 out of 5 stars Not what I expected
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 27, 2019
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jennifer tapsell
3.0 out of 5 stars The book has some useful reminders of grammatical rules at the start which I ...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 15, 2017
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5.0 out of 5 stars Accurate description, quick delivery
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on January 15, 2020
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Jenny Padmore
5.0 out of 5 stars Plenty of great tips, and much wisdom about the art of ...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 16, 2015
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