Snoopy’s Guide To The Writing Life - Elmore Leonard (2002)
Posted: 22 July 2007 08:19 PM   [ Ignore ]
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Publisher: Writer’s Digest Books (September 2002)
Barnaby Conrad
Monte Schulz


  I write my stories in scenes and always from a particular character’s point of view.  Then I may rewrite the same scene from a different character’s point of view and find that it works better.  After I finish a book, I continue to think about my characters and wonder what they’re up to.

  The most important advice I would suggest to beginning writers:  Try to leave out the parts the readers skip.

The best character is one who starts out in a minor role - sometimes without even having a name - and talks his way into the plot.

Elmore Leonard is the best-selling author of more than thirty books, including GET SHORTY, LA BRAVA, CUBA LIBRE, and STICK, most of which have been made into films.


Snoopy sits atop his dog house, banging out stories on a manual typewriter. Usually they begin “It was a dark and stormy night…” Always they’re rejected. In Snoopy’s Guide to the Writing Life—a wonderful gift for writers—a roundup of 30 famous writers and entertainers respond in short essays to their favorite Snoopy “at the typewriter” strip.

Each essay focuses on how the strip presents an aspect of writing life—getting started, getting rejected, searching for new ideas, and more—everything that beginning and professional writers deal with on a daily basis.

The essays are light and sometimes humorous, but all of them offer insight and inspiration for writers working at any level. The book presents a powerful lineup of contributors, including:

Ray Bradbury William F. Buckley, Jr. Julia Child Elizabeth George Sue Grafton Evan Hunter Elmore Leonard Danielle Steel And the Beagle himself!

Editor Barnaby Conrad and Monte Schulz (son of the late Charles Schulz) provide introductory chapters that address the writing life and how Snoopy’s experience—his tenacity and resilience—can inspire us all.