A clear road map that may help hopeful authors find their ways from ideas to finished books.

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A how-to guide for women who dream of writing a nonfiction book.

Freedman (Shaking the Tree, Vol. 2, 2019, etc.), a writing coach and licensed therapist, wants to help readers “unlock the book that is inside” them. Specifically, she aims to empower “big, bold thinkers,” and although many of her tips will help writers of any gender, her target audience is women, who, she argues, are more likely than men to have “trouble owning and touting their expertise.” In this practical volume, she aims to take readers step by step from brainstorming and creating a writing routine to crafting an engaging title and working with different types of editors. Using her “Three-Key Method,” Freedman shows how would-be authors can identify their book’s “Promise,” or the “clear value” that it will deliver to readers; its “Premise,” or its core idea; and the “Approach,” or how one will present the information. Analyses of successful books, such as Susan Cain’s Quiet (2012) and Sophia Amoruso’s #Girlboss (2014), illustrate various authorial strategies. By breaking down the writing process into understandable steps, Freedman effectively demystifies it. Refreshingly, she also resists shopworn advice, such as that one must write every single day, in favor of more realistic guidance, such as that one can create a writing calendar with specific goals and rewards to keep on track. She doesn’t hesitate to tackle the emotional aspects of writing, as well, such as how to “kick-start your self-esteem boost” if you find yourself questioning whether you’re qualified to craft a book. She also urges readers to respect their intuition and inspiration, reminding them that “rules and organization alone do not create the magic” that “will make your book fly off the shelves.”

A clear road map that may help hopeful authors find their ways from ideas to finished books.

Pub Date: Aug. 15, 2018

ISBN: 978-0-9974413-8-3

Page Count: 356

Publisher: MCM Publishing

Review Posted Online: Jan. 22, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2020



This is not the Nutcracker sweet, as passed on by Tchaikovsky and Marius Petipa. No, this is the original Hoffmann tale of 1816, in which the froth of Christmas revelry occasionally parts to let the dark underside of childhood fantasies and fears peek through. The boundaries between dream and reality fade, just as Godfather Drosselmeier, the Nutcracker's creator, is seen as alternately sinister and jolly. And Italian artist Roberto Innocenti gives an errily realistic air to Marie's dreams, in richly detailed illustrations touched by a mysterious light. A beautiful version of this classic tale, which will captivate adults and children alike. (Nutcracker; $35.00; Oct. 28, 1996; 136 pp.; 0-15-100227-4)

Pub Date: Oct. 28, 1996

ISBN: 0-15-100227-4

Page Count: 136

Publisher: Harcourt

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 1996




An extravaganza in Bemelmans' inimitable vein, but written almost dead pan, with sly, amusing, sometimes biting undertones, breaking through. For Bemelmans was "the man who came to cocktails". And his hostess was Lady Mendl (Elsie de Wolfe), arbiter of American decorating taste over a generation. Lady Mendl was an incredible person,- self-made in proper American tradition on the one hand, for she had been haunted by the poverty of her childhood, and the years of struggle up from its ugliness,- until she became synonymous with the exotic, exquisite, worshipper at beauty's whrine. Bemelmans draws a portrait in extremes, through apt descriptions, through hilarious anecdote, through surprisingly sympathetic and understanding bits of appreciation. The scene shifts from Hollywood to the home she loved the best in Versailles. One meets in passing a vast roster of famous figures of the international and artistic set. And always one feels Bemelmans, slightly offstage, observing, recording, commenting, illustrated.

Pub Date: Feb. 23, 1955

ISBN: 0670717797

Page Count: -

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: Oct. 25, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 1955

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