Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life

Front Cover
Anchor Books, 1994 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 239 pages
1784 Reviews
"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.'"

"Superb writing advice... hilarious, helpful and provocative." -- "New York Times Book Review."

"A warm, generous and hilarious guide through the writer's world and its treacherous swamps." -- "Los Angeles Times."

"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." -- "Seattle Times."

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A nurturing, inspiring book on being a writer. - LibraryThing
Its title and cover art were certainly deceiving. - LibraryThing
Lamott offers more encouragement than practical advice. - LibraryThing
This is great writing. - LibraryThing
Most writers can't teach writing worth a damn. - LibraryThing
There's a lot of practical, common sense advice here. - LibraryThing

Review: Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life

User Review  - LC Rooney - Goodreads

This book is on my permanent book shelf. I can not imagine a time when I wouldn't be tempted to take it down and re-read some chapter or two - or all of it! - again. Anne Lamott is a kindred soul to ... Read full review

Review: Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life

User Review  - Joe Hulsey - Goodreads

This is a very insightful, very introspective book. I didn't read it with thoughts of becoming a writer, but now I might. I did come away with a lot of great ideas and warm feelings. I loved it and I love how it made me think. Read full review

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About the author (1994)

Anne Lamott lives with her son, Sam, in northern California. She is the author of five books, including the novels Hard Laughter, Rosie, Joe Jones, and All New People. Her last book, Operating Instructions: A Journal of My Son's First Year, was published by Pantheon in 1993.


From the Hardcover edition.

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