Is There A Book In You? By Alison Baverstock

I bought this book because I really enjoyed a talk given by Alison Baverstock as a part of the Essex Book Festival. I was even lucky enough to get my copy signed. After reading this book I now can’t help wondering if the author was using her author persona (you’ll have to read the book to find out what that means) when I asked for the book to be singed.

This creative writing book is like none that I have ever seen. For a start during the introduction the author tells us that this book will not teach us how to write. This book is more philosophical than practical in the type of advice it gives. Large parts of this book are applicable to any creative endeavour as they concern how you can adapt your space and lifestyle to meet the demands of your chosen art.  This even goes as far as making sure you have a useful support network. This like a lot of the advice seems like common sense but it isn’t until you read and process these things that you find yourself evaluating yourself and thinking of ways to improve. There is a useful questionnaire near the back. I recommend answering the questions and getting your total score before and after reading this book. Mine changed by five percent which is quite scary.

There are a LOT of quotes in this book and I wouldn’t normally like that but in this case I found them useful and inspiring. Each point the author makes is backed up by quotes from different authors. Sometimes four or five authors are quoted for a single point. Each author mentioned gets a brief bio at the end of the book so it is easy to flick through and find out about a person who’s quote was particularly interesting. The bibliography is huge and there is a section of useful contacts in the back as well.

This book will not teach you how to write or become published but it will help you remove some of the barriers to achieving your artistic potential.

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