Wrede on Writing is a book on writing by Patricia C. Wrede.
This was a Netgalley find.
Normally, I look upon books about writing by writers I've never heard of in the same light as telephone psychics offering me the winning lottery numbers. If the writer in question is so good, why aren't they too busy cranking out best sellers to write a book about writing? From the opening page, Wrede had me hooked.
Maybe it was the relaxed tone. Maybe it was her clear grasp of what it takes to go into a novel. Or maybe it was the book's underlying philosophy of "There is no One Way. Figure out what works for you and do that."
Unlike a lot of other writing books, at no point did I feel like the writer was trying to force me into using his or her writing methods. It reads like a beloved aunt is guiding me through the novel writing process but giving me enough space to do what I want.
Not only does Wrede reveal what has and hasn't worked for her over the years, she also relates anecdotes from other writers. She also shares examples from her own writing and that of other authors to illustrate her points.
Wrede covers a pretty wide range of topics, like viewpoints, pace, worldbuilding, outlining, even verb tenses. She even goes into the business end of things, all the while reminding the reader that not all writers are the same and not all advice is going to work for every writer.
I guess the bottom line is get a good grasp of the English (or whichever) language, figure out what works for you, and do that. It should be obvious advice but it was really refreshing in a writing book.
Unless this book takes a nosedive in the little bit I have left, four out of five stars.