Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The Maeve Binchy Writers' Club

I've been writing all of my life. From the time I was a little girl, I was writing stories, plays  and poems. While I was still in high school, I had already written several editorials for CBC Radio and won a number of writing contests too. The love of writing began very early for me. I can't think of anything that has brought me more satisfaction and sense of accomplishment, than a story/post/poem/book completed and one that I was pleased with.

In the past 10 years or so, I've attempted to write my first novel, a couple of times. Sadly, my previous attempts fizzled out for a number of reasons. Left to languish forever on typed pages and computer disks.

In this past year, the "novel bug" has once again bit and I am very pleased to date with how I am progressing. What have I done differently this time? Top of the list of what's been helpful: I've read a number of writer's guides, including The Maeve Binchy Writers' Club. The inspiration and encouragement  I have derived from this book has really helped me on my journey to finally adding "novelist" to my accomplishments to date.

To back-track just a bit before reviewing this book, here's a link to a post over at one of my other blogs: Take A Happy Break, that gives a bit more background about my current novel aspirations.

From the Amazon product page:
“The most important thing to realize is that everyone is capable of telling a story.” –Maeve Binchy

If you scribble story ideas on the backs of receipts…
If you file away bits of overheard conversation from the coffee shop...
If you’ve already chosen the perfect pen name...
Well, then the journey has begun!

In this warm and inspiring guide, beloved author Maeve Binchy shares her unique insight to how a best selling author writes: from finding a subject and creating good writing habits to sustaining progress and seeking a publisher.

I agree with that quote above, by Maeve Binchy, whole-heartedly!

We all have a story, sometimes many, many stories to tell. But it takes a lot of determination and drive to actually get the writing done and done well. Writing is a true pleasure for me but it's also hard work. And it's so easy to get discouraged and frustrated along the way to that final page.

Being inspired and encouraged by other writers is certainly a good way to stay motivated and on track. I've recently read some writing guides that just left me feeling discouraged and overwhelmed, case in point this one: Writing Fiction for Dummies by Randy Ingermanson and Peter Economy which I also reviewed here.

And then there are those like The Maeve Binchy Writers' Club that made me feel like I am on the right track. That I could and would write a novel that I would be happy with, this time! And maybe, just maybe get it published too.

The Maeve Binchy Writers' Club is a warm, engaging, non-intimidating and informative guide that provides the reader with an overview of what it takes to succeed when working on a variety of writing projects.

Some of the chapters included are:

-Murder, Mystery and Suspense
-Writing Comedy
-The Publisher
-Writer's Groups
-Writing Short Stories
-The Role of the Editor
-Finding Your Voice

to name but a few....

Reading this book felt like having a chat with a good friend. Maeve Binchy gives many personal accounts throughout this book of her own struggles and triumphs along the way. How she  "found her voice" and has gone on to be an international best-selling author, with millions of fans, all over the world.

If you are a writer or just always dreamed of being one and are looking for some friendly, helpful advice how best to proceed with your own particular writing project or goal; check out The Maeve Binchy Writers' Club. Click the link to visit the Amazon ordering page.

user-friendly, entertaining and informative writer's guide that just might make all the difference in your own pursuits as a writer.

(I should mention that the book I have has a different cover than the one shown above.An updated version may be the one that's currently available at Amazon. I don't think there would be much if any major differences though.)

Overall rating for this book. Excellent. 5 out of 5.


  1. This looks like it could be a real good read. I added it to my Amazon wish list so I'll remember it when I'm placing an order.

  2. I can see that her advice would be good, her books are.

  3. I agree, her books are awesome! So I'm not surprised you gave her 5 out of 5. I have all her books and I love the way she writes. Selma reminds me of that style, perhaps its cos she's, oh dear can't remember if its Scotland or Ireland Selma is from, but anyway, the writers from there and England all tend to be great storytellers and their stories tend to be family sagas. They make you care about the characters with the first few pages. She's definetly someone to emulate or take advice from that's for sure!

  4. It is because you are already a writer and sometimes when it's too easy it makes you thing it can't be right or good...trust yourself I know the feeling, butone thing Ihad realized after a while is i could write and did many many many novels, I just had to write it I didn't care if anyone ever saw it...It's a need like breathing, so just breathe...

  5. Geraldine,
    This looks like a very good book on writing.
    My mom loved to read this writer, and I always knew that the best gift I could give her was the latest Maeve Binchy novel.
    From the quotes above, this sounds like a book I want to read. She seems to have a humble, comfortable tone... and I always find that will be the best kind of "how to" book to read.

    I didn't know you'd written in your high school years, although I had been aware of your writing in various local publications in our adult years. This is just so interesting, to me.

    Good luck in your writing, it sounds like this is going to be the time you complete your novel.
    I'll be waiting to read it!!

  6. You go girl! Get that book done so we can read and enjoy it.
    Good that you found this helpful advice.

  7. Hi BongoDog, I think you'll enjoy it! If you order via my site, I get some$$$ too, back from Amazon. ;<)

    Hi SandyL, She certainly has a lot of novels and so well-liked too. This book had such a warm, friendly tone in addition to all the really sound advice in it. I read it in a day actually, it was that good.

    HI Cathy, You are certainly an avid reader Cathy. Have you ever considered writing fiction? Based on your "no holds barred" style on your blog (and I mean that in a good way!) I think you've got the talent to take it further. You might want to check this book out for some inspiration to give it a try! I hope you do and I hope you enjoy the book as much as I did.

    Hi Brenda, Isn't it great when we can buy someone a gift we know they will love? For my mom, it was fabric, jewelry, bling of all types, paints...she wasn't a reader or writer but she was talented in so many other ways.

    Yes, I did write quite a bit in high school and grade school too. If you remember the Cameron girls, both that I was close friends with...their dad was with the CBC for many years and he was very encouraging to me, in pursuing my writing. He also helped me start with writing for the CBC and I was on the radio several times, reading my own editorials at about 14-15 I believe. Heady stuff indeed for a teenager to be down at the CBC, mingling with the writers, getting well paid too. I still have tapes of those...fun to listen to them now.

    Hi Lorraine, I agree about trusting ourselves. That's so true. And what a feeling when others enjoy our work, of all types. Getting paid to do what we love is rather special too. I've savored every cheque I got over the years for my writing. Getting paid to have fun, love it!

    Hi Teri, Thanks Teri. My novel is going very well although I've been a bit distracted lately with some other stuff. Now that Scriveners for Windows is available (yippeee!) I'm looking forward to adding that tool to my writing pursuits. It's such a cool software program and highly recommended.

    Happy Thursday, G

    PS: It finally snowed here, yippee!


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