The Art of Fiction: Notes on Craft for Young Writers (Google eBook)

Front Cover
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Aug 18, 2010 - Reference - 240 pages
28 Reviews
This classic guide, from the renowned novelist and professor, has helped transform generations of aspiring writers into masterful writers—and will continue to do so for many years to come.  
John Gardner was almost as famous as a teacher of creative writing as he was for his own works. In this practical, instructive handbook, based on the courses and seminars that he gave, he explains, simply and cogently, the principles and techniques of good writing. Gardner’s lessons, exemplified with detailed excerpts from classic works of literature, sweep across a complete range of topics—from the nature of aesthetics to the shape of a refined sentence. Written with passion, precision, and a deep respect for the art of writing, Gardner’s book serves by turns as a critic, mentor, and friend. Anyone who has ever thought of taking the step from reader to writer should begin here.  

From the Trade Paperback edition.

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
4 stars
3 stars
2 stars
1 star

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - JacobSeifert - LibraryThing

The snobbish opening nearly scared me off. I was sure I was what Gardner calls an "ignoramus," but I stuck with it and learned some valuable things. I like that he reinforces that successful writing ... Read full review

Review: The Art of Fiction: Notes on Craft for Young Writers

User Review  - Casee Marie - Goodreads

"What moves us is not just that characters, images, and events get some form of recapitulations or recall: We are moved by the increasing connectedness of things, ultimately a connectedness of values ... Read full review


Basic Skills Genre and Fiction as Dream 17
Interest and Truth 39
Metafiction Deconstruction and Iazzing Around 82
f Common Errors 97
Exercises 1

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2010)

John Gardner was accorded wide praise for his works of imagination, of criticism, and of scholarship.  He was born in 1933 in Batavia, New York.  Among the universities at which he taught are Oberlin, San Francisco State, Northwestern, Southern Illinois, Bennington and SUNY-Binghamton. The Art of Fiction was completed before his death in 1982.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

Bibliographic information