A Writer’s Time by Kenneth Atchity

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A Writer’s Time was originally written by Kenneth Atchity in 1986 and updated in 1995.

A Writer’s Time: Making the Time to Write

Revised and Expanded By Kenneth Atchity

ISBN 0-393-31263-1(PBK)


The creator of this book, Kenneth Atchity, has played many career roles in his lifetime: professor of comparative literature, author, producer, literary manager, and editor. He founded several companies, wrote nearly two dozen books, and was nominated for both a Gemini Award and an Emmy. He knows how to get things done.

Originally written in 1986, A Writer’s time was updated and republished in 1995. I felt that the information in this book was applicable, particularly the sections about how the creative mind processes information. Mr. Atchity stuffed the Finding Time and Writing in Time sections with tips and techniques to help writers manage their time. He then moved on to discuss the elements of fiction and drama, followed by a section on how to navigate the publishing industry, and then chapters on myths, screenwriting, creativity, and inspiration.

The amount of helpful advice found in these chapters is staggering. While most writers will find useful information within these pages, only a handful will find each piece of information useful. It took a little longer for me to mentally digest each of the sections than I would have preferred, and I felt that the work vacillated somewhat between pragmatic and idealistic.

Evergreen advice is included in this guide, such as scheduling a mental vacation for yourself large portions of projects and how to deal with the fear of rejection. Some of the advice within, like writing out and sorting through note cards to develop the piece and keeping track of queries via a handwritten list, is viable but outdated and might be better managed in a modern app.

Overall, this is definitely a book worth taking the time to read. There were definitely some areas in A Writer’s Time that could use a more recent update with modern technological advances. It has solid information on managing your time, and a unique and memorable tone that makes it easier to recall.

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