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Welcome to the Writer's Life: How to Design Your Writing Craft, Writing Business, Writing Practice, and Reading Practice

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Always wanted to be a writer? Stop wasting time and start your writing life today!   With warmth and humor, the author welcomes you into the writer’s life as someone who has been there on the other side looking in. Like a freshman orientation for writers, this book includes an in-depth exploration of all the elements of a writer's life, from your writing practice to your r Always wanted to be a writer? Stop wasting time and start your writing life today!   With warmth and humor, the author welcomes you into the writer’s life as someone who has been there on the other side looking in. Like a freshman orientation for writers, this book includes an in-depth exploration of all the elements of a writer's life, from your writing practice to your reading practice, to your writing craft and the all-important and often-overlooked business of writing. Harness the powers of crowdsourcing and social media to grow your writing career, and use the most current research on success, gamification, and lifestyle design to take your writing life to the next level. Complete with writing exercises, tools, checklists, infographics, and behind-the-scenes tips from working writers of all types, this book offers everything you need to jump-start a successful writing life.


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Always wanted to be a writer? Stop wasting time and start your writing life today!   With warmth and humor, the author welcomes you into the writer’s life as someone who has been there on the other side looking in. Like a freshman orientation for writers, this book includes an in-depth exploration of all the elements of a writer's life, from your writing practice to your r Always wanted to be a writer? Stop wasting time and start your writing life today!   With warmth and humor, the author welcomes you into the writer’s life as someone who has been there on the other side looking in. Like a freshman orientation for writers, this book includes an in-depth exploration of all the elements of a writer's life, from your writing practice to your reading practice, to your writing craft and the all-important and often-overlooked business of writing. Harness the powers of crowdsourcing and social media to grow your writing career, and use the most current research on success, gamification, and lifestyle design to take your writing life to the next level. Complete with writing exercises, tools, checklists, infographics, and behind-the-scenes tips from working writers of all types, this book offers everything you need to jump-start a successful writing life.

30 review for Welcome to the Writer's Life: How to Design Your Writing Craft, Writing Business, Writing Practice, and Reading Practice

  1. 5 out of 5

    Mel

    This... seriously reads like the literary therapy session that every writer needs at SOME point in their process. I was lucky enough to get a free copy at just the right time in my own process and I’ll forever be grateful! Just like going to reading gives you, a writer, perspective on the reality of the trade and, hopefully, inspiration to KEEP WRITING no matter what because even the most successful authors were in your shoes once (which is one piece of advice given in the book; as part of findi This... seriously reads like the literary therapy session that every writer needs at SOME point in their process. I was lucky enough to get a free copy at just the right time in my own process and I’ll forever be grateful! Just like going to reading gives you, a writer, perspective on the reality of the trade and, hopefully, inspiration to KEEP WRITING no matter what because even the most successful authors were in your shoes once (which is one piece of advice given in the book; as part of finding your community, go be in the world of writing!), this book is full of the most supportive nuggets of hope that I’d strongly advise anyone who is stuck or feeling particularly pessimistic, to just grab a copy and sit with it for a few days, then get your butt back in the chair and make your art.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Quintin Zimmermann

    Secretly, all us bibliophiles wish we had the patience and talent to be a renowned writer - spending days immersed in the written word - not just reading, but creating. Does Welcome to the Writer's Life offer us the chance to fulfil our literary aspirations? The answer is nebulous yes and no. First of all, according to Paulette Perhach and pretty much everybody she quotes, to become a successful author, you need to write a prodigious amount, which is proceeded by even more rewrites and then subst Secretly, all us bibliophiles wish we had the patience and talent to be a renowned writer - spending days immersed in the written word - not just reading, but creating. Does Welcome to the Writer's Life offer us the chance to fulfil our literary aspirations? The answer is nebulous yes and no. First of all, according to Paulette Perhach and pretty much everybody she quotes, to become a successful author, you need to write a prodigious amount, which is proceeded by even more rewrites and then substantive cuts which is followed by starting the entire process all over again. Welcome to the Writer's Life is replete with useful tips and information, which may not get you published, but it is a decent starting point for any aspiring writers.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Anca

    Welcome to the Writer's Life is truly a welcoming guide for anyone who wants to get serious about writing; it's also chockfull of useful reminders for the more experienced. Perhach writes in her introduction, "You can't control whether you're a published writer, a professional writer, or a paid writer, but you can control whether you're a writing writer." This is essential to the writing life: doing the work. I enjoyed the playfulness of this book too. The suggestion to have an adventure once a Welcome to the Writer's Life is truly a welcoming guide for anyone who wants to get serious about writing; it's also chockfull of useful reminders for the more experienced. Perhach writes in her introduction, "You can't control whether you're a published writer, a professional writer, or a paid writer, but you can control whether you're a writing writer." This is essential to the writing life: doing the work. I enjoyed the playfulness of this book too. The suggestion to have an adventure once a week--you can't spend your entire existence reading and writing--reminded me of an essay Gary Shteyngart wrote about how he spends every Sunday roaming New York City and eating his way toward inspiration. I also loved the list of resources on wordplay, 90% of which I'd never used before, and I'm a huge word nerd. Hooray for the writing life!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Dez Schwartz

    This is one of the best books on the topic of writing as a lifestyle that I have read so far. A lot of the tips are more helpful to beginners but there's also a great amount of advice and motivational portions that are useful to writers at any stage of their career. I borrowed this book from my local library but I think it holds enough value that I definitely plan on purchasing a copy for myself. This is one of the best books on the topic of writing as a lifestyle that I have read so far. A lot of the tips are more helpful to beginners but there's also a great amount of advice and motivational portions that are useful to writers at any stage of their career. I borrowed this book from my local library but I think it holds enough value that I definitely plan on purchasing a copy for myself.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Chris Wolak

    If you’re a newbie writer this book will help you create your path and if you’ve been writing for years it’ll put some pep back into your step. Reviewed on my blog: https://chriswolak.com/2019/05/17/rev... If you’re a newbie writer this book will help you create your path and if you’ve been writing for years it’ll put some pep back into your step. Reviewed on my blog: https://chriswolak.com/2019/05/17/rev...

  6. 5 out of 5

    Rosemary Rey

    This is a great reference book for people considering their contribution to the craft. New writers and intermediate writers who need a refresher on the business can use this book as a resource. I appreciated some of the book suggestions because I'm always looking for recommendations. The book was well organized. The author's witty personality showed through in this book, keeping me interested in reading until the end. Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for this book in exchange for an hone This is a great reference book for people considering their contribution to the craft. New writers and intermediate writers who need a refresher on the business can use this book as a resource. I appreciated some of the book suggestions because I'm always looking for recommendations. The book was well organized. The author's witty personality showed through in this book, keeping me interested in reading until the end. Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for this book in exchange for an honest review.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Nick Carr-Sorensen

    WELCOME TO THE WRITER'S LIFE is a much-needed guide on how to build the habits demanded of successful writers, because unfortunately, your novel can't write itself. Filled with activities to help writers of all levels stay organized and to keep writing, Perhach's book shifts its focus away from the craft of writing and focuses on the how that puts pen to paper. Full disclosure: a year ago, before this book was published, Perhach became my writing mentor through the Hugo House in Seattle. I studie WELCOME TO THE WRITER'S LIFE is a much-needed guide on how to build the habits demanded of successful writers, because unfortunately, your novel can't write itself. Filled with activities to help writers of all levels stay organized and to keep writing, Perhach's book shifts its focus away from the craft of writing and focuses on the how that puts pen to paper. Full disclosure: a year ago, before this book was published, Perhach became my writing mentor through the Hugo House in Seattle. I studied under her through the fall, pumpkin latte just to the right of my laptop. After having gone through what became WELCOME TO THE WRITER'S LIFE, I expected the book to echo what Perhach had already taught me. Thankfully, I was wrong. WELCOME TO THE WRITER'S LIFE built upon the foundations of my writing practice and renewed my passion for keeping up the writer's habits. What surprised me most about Perhach's lessons, and what may surprise writers looking for how to write their villain's perfect, tragic backstory, is that WELCOME TO THE WRITER'S LIFE is not that book. "Shouldn't I send her more writing samples?" I thought every week. Craft, however, emerges from a consistent reading and writing practice that WELCOME TO THE WRITER'S LIFE teaches you how to begin and maintain. Consider this quote from Octavia Butler, taken from her essay on writing, Furor Scribendi: "First forget inspiration. Habit is more dependable. Habit will sustain you whether you're inspired or not. Habit will help you finish and polish your stories. Inspiration won't. Habit is persistence in practice." This emphasis on habit pumps the blood in the heart of WELCOME TO THE WRITER'S LIFE: without dedication and organization, there is no finished work. Reading, writing, organizing, and even building your social media presence to let the world know " I'm a writer!" is how aspiring writers remove the "aspiring" from their bios. Where do you think this Goodreads account came from? This is not to say Perhach won't make you write. Oh no no nooo. Perhach shares testimonials from other writers, and then gives you homework. Ranging from diary entries, checklists, and putting your draft away for a month to dust it off and read it with fresh eyes, Perhach forces you to write to yourself about why being a writer matters and how you're going to succeed.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Olivia Elizabeth

    I find most how-to-write books kind of daunting and a little discouraging by the end. Some tell you that you need to have an innate gift to write and others go on and on about how writing must become your one and only pursuit in order to make your dreams come true. Perhach definitely isn't telling you that making a career out of writing is easy. Quite on the contrary- it's something that takes a lot of time, a lot of effort, and a little bit of luck. That being said, I found Welcome to the Writer I find most how-to-write books kind of daunting and a little discouraging by the end. Some tell you that you need to have an innate gift to write and others go on and on about how writing must become your one and only pursuit in order to make your dreams come true. Perhach definitely isn't telling you that making a career out of writing is easy. Quite on the contrary- it's something that takes a lot of time, a lot of effort, and a little bit of luck. That being said, I found Welcome to the Writer's Life to be one of the most motivational writing books I've read. I left it feeling like anyone could be a writer. You just have to get over that initial fear of failure and self consciousness. It's a process certainly, but it's doable and everyone has to go through it. Writer's Life covers a lot of ground- from how to work on structuring your writing, editing it, how to read like a writer, and how to go about getting published. There's a wealth of really cool exercises that I'm looking forward to trying, plus an online component where you can find character sheets and other forms to aid your writing. You don't even need to buy the book to access them! If you like to write, whether it be poetry, prose, fiction, or nonfiction, and you want to improve your craft then this is a book you should pick up. I think it will be a great resource to tons of writers of all kinds.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Sharyn

    I've read a million books for writers on writing. For me, this has been one of the best investments of my time. This book has helped give my writing dreams a pulse again at a time when, after languishing for years in Never Published Land and considering chucking it for good, it has helped shift my perspective and remind me that I'm an artist. An arteest! And that it hasn't all been wasted time. So what makes this one stand out? It covers pretty much everything you could possibly want to read abo I've read a million books for writers on writing. For me, this has been one of the best investments of my time. This book has helped give my writing dreams a pulse again at a time when, after languishing for years in Never Published Land and considering chucking it for good, it has helped shift my perspective and remind me that I'm an artist. An arteest! And that it hasn't all been wasted time. So what makes this one stand out? It covers pretty much everything you could possibly want to read about as a writer. It is full of useful practical help, and covered things I hadn't read about in other books on writing. I especially liked the passage titled 'Celebrating the Freedom to be a Writer'. I wish the book also covered pseudonyms, but beyond this omission I really can't fault it. I've used post it notes throughout the book for future reference and will probably read it again. This is one I'll be keeping.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer Gibbons

    I became familiar with Paulette Perhach's writing when she wrote the now famous Bleep It Fund (I'm changing it for family audiences) essay for Billfold. I knew whatever book she would write, I would read it. What made it even better: her first book is a writing book. It's a lovely starter's kit on what to expect in the writing world these days. Perhach shares how serving in the Peace Corps made her become a writer. She then shares how she got work done while working a 9to5 job, and how we can do I became familiar with Paulette Perhach's writing when she wrote the now famous Bleep It Fund (I'm changing it for family audiences) essay for Billfold. I knew whatever book she would write, I would read it. What made it even better: her first book is a writing book. It's a lovely starter's kit on what to expect in the writing world these days. Perhach shares how serving in the Peace Corps made her become a writer. She then shares how she got work done while working a 9to5 job, and how we can do it as well. It also has plenty of quotes from writers Jess Walters and others that provide a balm on bad writing days. Step by step, she shows how it's possible to write every day, write every day, write every day. It's a blessing of a book. Thanks to NetGalley for providing me a copy.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Nadia Norin

    I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. This book is very helpful especially for aspiring writers who don't know where to start or how to start. There are inspirational and motivational sections throughout the book that would boost the readers confidence in trying out. This book is definitely very helpful to everyone. I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. This book is very helpful especially for aspiring writers who don't know where to start or how to start. There are inspirational and motivational sections throughout the book that would boost the readers confidence in trying out. This book is definitely very helpful to everyone.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Erin

    Between her own experience and in-depth research, Perhach offers a great guide for both the novice and experienced writer looking to level up his or her game!

  13. 4 out of 5

    C. S.

    (Review probably to come)

  14. 4 out of 5

    Stan James

    I am continuing on my unofficial second career as not a writer, but one who reads every book about writing instead. Then writes about them. Welcome to the Writer's Life succeeds on a couple of fronts. First, author Paulette Perhach has an entertaining voice and regularly drops funny little zingers in with her advice without ever making it feel like she's trying really hard to make you laugh. Second, the book tackles a few things that a lot of new writer books don't cover or cover minimally. There I am continuing on my unofficial second career as not a writer, but one who reads every book about writing instead. Then writes about them. Welcome to the Writer's Life succeeds on a couple of fronts. First, author Paulette Perhach has an entertaining voice and regularly drops funny little zingers in with her advice without ever making it feel like she's trying really hard to make you laugh. Second, the book tackles a few things that a lot of new writer books don't cover or cover minimally. There are plenty of books that will cover the classic plot structures, character development and other things you need to know in order to tell a convincing story--whether it be through fiction or non-fiction. Perhach covers the other stuff in a writer's life, relating her and the experiences of other writers in finding ways to nurture and grow your writing habits, covering everything from what to read (and how important reading is) to meditation to clear your mental decks (she claims to never suffer writer's block because of her daily 15-minute meditation sessions), as well as touching on the business side of writing, along with thoughts on pursuing an MFA (spoiler: she doesn't think it's necessary). It took me awhile to read through the book and though I enjoyed it, I found myself wondering why, and I believe it's two things: I found the quotes from other writers largely unnecessary (fewer would have been fine) and there are sections where even Perhach's writing style can't lift the subject matter from feeling just a little dull. But I have read a lot of books on writing, so it's just as likely that I am becoming a bit weary of the topic of writing itself. Still, I think this is a good intro to the craft of writing for a new writer and have no problem recommending it alongside other more "nuts and bolts" book on the writing process itself.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Leah

    This is a book I needed when I didn't even know it. This book took me by the collar, shook me, and very kindly told me inches from my face that I needed to get back to work. I've been writing for well over a decade, having made my first real attempt at a book at the age of nine. And since then, it's been nearly impossible to get me to stop. But this book reminded me of the kind of work that I need to be putting into my craft. It reminded me about how if writing is how I want to live my life, ther This is a book I needed when I didn't even know it. This book took me by the collar, shook me, and very kindly told me inches from my face that I needed to get back to work. I've been writing for well over a decade, having made my first real attempt at a book at the age of nine. And since then, it's been nearly impossible to get me to stop. But this book reminded me of the kind of work that I need to be putting into my craft. It reminded me about how if writing is how I want to live my life, there's a certain type of work that I need to get started doing. This is a book written for people who want to get started writing, but even for someone like me who's been at this for years, who has a bachelor's in the damn subject, this was a ridiculously useful smack in the butt to get back to work, and to work in ways that will grow my skills rather than stagnate them. I'm already starting a second readthrough just to get some notes down and start doing all of the activities inside, and I have no doubt I'll be jumping back to this one in the future when I need another gentle but firm shake back to what I need to be doing.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Travis Timmons

    For me, a life changer of a book. Perhach writes so well (and resourcefully!) about the parts of writing that seem to get overlooked in other books--starting out and the "gap years," your reading, the writing community, time management, and checklists. But especially about what the "writer's life" means and looks like. I took extensive notes and reorganized my daily life around writing. Thank you, thank you, thank you, Paulette! For me, a life changer of a book. Perhach writes so well (and resourcefully!) about the parts of writing that seem to get overlooked in other books--starting out and the "gap years," your reading, the writing community, time management, and checklists. But especially about what the "writer's life" means and looks like. I took extensive notes and reorganized my daily life around writing. Thank you, thank you, thank you, Paulette!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Etienne

    Between the wanna be author guide, with advice and all, and the motivational book. I was less interested in the motivational part, but the guide/advice part of the book was good enough. Some advices were a bit to obvious and easy, but if you're interested in writing and no so sure how to organize or start it all, this might help you a bit! Between the wanna be author guide, with advice and all, and the motivational book. I was less interested in the motivational part, but the guide/advice part of the book was good enough. Some advices were a bit to obvious and easy, but if you're interested in writing and no so sure how to organize or start it all, this might help you a bit!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Stacy Kim

    This is indeed "freshman orientation" to life as a writer. It is both an inspiring and practical read for newbie writers who are still working on giving themselves permission to call themselves writers. I love how candid Paulette Perhach is with everything from her own struggles to her organizational strategies. As a result, she helps with both the outer and inner chaos of writers' lives. Her tone is encouraging and indeed welcoming, helping us to feel less alone. This is indeed "freshman orientation" to life as a writer. It is both an inspiring and practical read for newbie writers who are still working on giving themselves permission to call themselves writers. I love how candid Paulette Perhach is with everything from her own struggles to her organizational strategies. As a result, she helps with both the outer and inner chaos of writers' lives. Her tone is encouraging and indeed welcoming, helping us to feel less alone.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Grace

    I LOVED this book! It’s a wonderful resource for anyone interested in being a writer. Paulette really breaks down the various aspects of a “writer’s life” in a way that feels welcoming and accessible. I borrowed it from my library but will definitely be buying my own copy to have on hand for reference!

  20. 4 out of 5

    Alissa McClure

    This book was EXACTLY what I needed. I loved her encouragement and insights and have already felt renewed and less alone in the writing world. This book is fantastic.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Alexa

    This is absolutely one of the most helpful books on writing I’ve ever read. It has so many helpful tips and a great tone that makes it easy and fun to read. I’ve already put some of her suggestions into practice and can’t wait to try more!

  22. 4 out of 5

    January Gray

    A pretty good book. Read it and take what your find useful from it. I was expecting more humor, but maybe that was just me.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kathleen Celmins

    This is SUCH a great guide to writing, and a glimpse into the life of a "real" writer. Paulette's writing style is endlessly approachable, and while she makes writing (and editing) sound like a lot of work, that's because it is. Get this if you're even thinking about selling your writing. This is SUCH a great guide to writing, and a glimpse into the life of a "real" writer. Paulette's writing style is endlessly approachable, and while she makes writing (and editing) sound like a lot of work, that's because it is. Get this if you're even thinking about selling your writing.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

    Great book, cutting edge, I will definitely be teaching with this.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Korie Brown

    Lots of good advice. I'l re-read this one. Lots of good advice. I'l re-read this one.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Rachael Stout

    This was one of the most practical, inspiring, and thought-provoking books I have ever read on the art of writing for a living. From the ever-practical 'rejection is normal' to tips on how to set up your day, live frugally, or keep writer's journal- I was constantly stopping to take notes and apply the suggestions. An extra bonus was the practical lists of places to submit, books to read, and extra resources for writers. I would recommend this book to anyone who has ever had the dream of becoming This was one of the most practical, inspiring, and thought-provoking books I have ever read on the art of writing for a living. From the ever-practical 'rejection is normal' to tips on how to set up your day, live frugally, or keep writer's journal- I was constantly stopping to take notes and apply the suggestions. An extra bonus was the practical lists of places to submit, books to read, and extra resources for writers. I would recommend this book to anyone who has ever had the dream of becoming a writer but didn't know where to start.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Chad

    Invaluable. A great how to guide that does not preach at you. It made me want to sit down and write which is great.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth Simpson

    Absolutely fabulous read!! Easy to read and makes planning for a “Writer’s Life” seem manageable!

  29. 5 out of 5

    Literary Redhead

    With great warmth and a light fun touch, award-winning author Paulette Perhach shepherds writers to productive success in WELCOME TO THE WRITER’S LIFE. Especially good for beginners, but helpful for writers at any level who need that extra oomph to keep fighting the good fight. Covers getting started, improving craft, adding in a valuable reading habit, and mastering the biz and marketing sides. Also incorporates current success psychology and lifestyle design, while offering exercises, checklis With great warmth and a light fun touch, award-winning author Paulette Perhach shepherds writers to productive success in WELCOME TO THE WRITER’S LIFE. Especially good for beginners, but helpful for writers at any level who need that extra oomph to keep fighting the good fight. Covers getting started, improving craft, adding in a valuable reading habit, and mastering the biz and marketing sides. Also incorporates current success psychology and lifestyle design, while offering exercises, checklists, infographics, tools, and writers’ insider tips to boost confidence and skill levels. Written in a highly relatable style from one who’s been there. 5/5 Pub Date 14 Aug 2018 Thanks to Sasquatch Books and NetGalley for the review copy. Opinions are fully mine. #WelcomeToTheWriter'sLife #NetGalley

  30. 5 out of 5

    Gabrielle Bates

    I’d assumed (incorrectly) when I set out to read this book, that I was reading it primarily through the lens of a teacher, searching for nuggets of wisdom I could bring back and give students. While I did find tons to help me do that (I can’t wait to incorporate resources, lists, and anecdotes from this book into a course I’m teaching on “Demystifying the Submission Process”) I also marked a million sections that spoke to me personally. Even if you’ve been “living the writing life” for years, th I’d assumed (incorrectly) when I set out to read this book, that I was reading it primarily through the lens of a teacher, searching for nuggets of wisdom I could bring back and give students. While I did find tons to help me do that (I can’t wait to incorporate resources, lists, and anecdotes from this book into a course I’m teaching on “Demystifying the Submission Process”) I also marked a million sections that spoke to me personally. Even if you’ve been “living the writing life” for years, there is still so much in this book to inspire you, ground you, and push you towards your goals. Paulette Perhatch has created a perfectly organized, delightfully voiced, extremely digestible guide for writers of so many stripes. Super happy to own this book.

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