Saturday 6 July 2019

Book Review: Elements of Fiction by Walter Mosley (Non-Fiction)

Title: Elements of Fiction
Author: Walter Mosley
Grove Atlantic

Publication Date: 13 September 2019
eBook- PDF
ARC via NetGalley


In his essential writing guide, This Year You Write Your Novel, Walter Mosley supplied aspiring writers with the basic tools to write a novel in one year. In this com-plementary follow up, Mosley guides the writer through the elements of not just any fiction writing, but the kind of writing that transcends convention and truly stands out. How does one approach the genius of writers like Melville, Dickens, or Twain? In The Elements of Fiction, Walter Mosley contemplates the answer.

In a series of instructive and conversational chapters, Mosley demonstrates how to master fiction's most essential elements: character and char-acter development, plot and story, voice and narrative, context and description, and more. The result is a vivid depiction of the writing process, from the blank page to the first draft to rewriting, and rewriting again. Throughout, The Elements of Fiction is enriched by brilliant demonstrative examples that Mosley himself has written here for the first time.

Inspiring, accessible, and told in a voice both trustworthy and wise, The Elements of Fiction writing will intrigue and encourage writers and readers alike.

Elements of Fiction was an interesting, entertaining and quick read. Mosley's prose flows nicely and its tone is lyrical. However, I think readers need to be aware of what they are getting from this work. It does include a few tips and suggestions, but on the whole it is a reflection on the writing process, rather than a how-to manual, and anyone approaching it expecting the latter will be disappointed. For me personally, it raised a few interesting thoughts and ideas, and it was a pleasant evening's read, looking at another author's approach to and feelings about the writing process. As such, I am giving it four stars.

I received this book as a free eBook ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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