Saturday, September 6, 2008

Begin a New Career as a Writer? A Book Review

A review of The Writer Within You: A Step-by-Step Guide to Writing and Publishing in Your Retirement Years, by Charles Jacobs (Caros Books 2007).

In The Writer Within You, Charles Jacobs provides a basic guide to writing and publishing anything from a novel, memoir, or nonfiction book to magazine articles, travel stories, or business writing. His target audience seems to be the educated, entrepreneurial retiree eager to start a new career as a writer.

This book covers a lot of territory in its 300-plus pages, with an index and an appendix of sources for more in-depth information. It covers the writing process, the various ways to publish, and the business aspects of writing, with both instructional and inspirational purposes: "It is designed to be an activist book that propels you to make the leap from thinking to actually doing."

This is a serious, scholarly, well-written, informative book for anyone, retired or not, who is in the early stages of considering writing as a new career. On the other hand, for the more reluctant, perhaps older retiree just thinking about writing as a possible way to discover, heal, reinvent, share, or enjoy, the person just considering writing down family stories, it may seem intimidating.

For them, my own book, Seniorwriting: A Brief Guide for Seniors Who Want to Write may provide an easier start. Its 81 pages just might encourage some to go on to try full-fledged writing careers, and The Writer Within You would be a logical next step.

Copyright 2008 by Marlys Marshall Styne

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