Write It Sideways

3 Reasons to Read Lisa Cron’s “Wired for Story”

Today’s article is written by Suzannah Windsor Freeman, founding editor.

There are hundreds—probably thousands—of books about the craft of writing out there today, and those of us who earn very little from our writing endeavours are necessarily picky about where we invest our dollars.

But, every once in a while, a book that I can’t wait to share with others comes along.

When Lisa Cron contacted me some time ago, asking if I’d like an advance reader copy of her book Wired for Story (Ten Speed Press), I was impressed by her blog and bio. Through the years, she’s acted as an editor, literary agent, writing instructor, and story consultant for Warner Brothers and others.

Let’s just say she knows what she’s doing.

After reading Wired for Story, I was not only excited about writing a review, I couldn’t wait to pass the book on to my local writer-friends.

Check out the table of contents and first pages of Wired for Story here.

The Premise

If you’ve ever wondered how to get your readers to keep reading, consider this: Wired for Story‘s tagline is “The Writer’s Guide to Using Brain Science to Hook Readers from the Very First Sentence.”

Cron explains how humans are hardwired to respond to stories, and that storytelling has played an important role in history, culture, and even survival. She teaches us how to apply age-old storytelling techniques to our own writing, so readers won’t be able to tear themselves away.

Why Buy Wired for Story?

There are plenty of good reasons to pick up a copy of this book, but just a few of them are:

1. It’s a good resource for all levels of writers. If you’re a beginner, Wired for Story will help you learn the basics before you attempt to write a novel. It also uses case studies to bring all that theoretical advice to life. If you’ve been writing for a while, maybe even been published, you’ll enjoy the book as a comprehensive refresher. The style of writing is accessible and engaging, but not dumbed down, so it will appeal to writers across the board.

2. It confronts prevalent myths about the craft of writing. Think you already know it all? Think again. Cron uses several prevalent writing myths to show us where we often go wrong (even when we think we’re following well-known advice).

3. Chapters end with helpful checkpoint lists to keep you on the right track. I love checklists; they’re just so handy for self-editing or for a quick refresher. The checklists here are quite detailed, which means when you’re ready to re-read that first draft of your novel, you’ll quickly and easily discover areas for improvement.

This is one book I’ll be pleased to see on my bookshelf for years to come.

Pick up your copy of Lisa Cron’s Wired fo Story today. You can also subscribe to her blog and follow her on Twitter.