Tuesday, 14 May 2013

How to Write by Harry Bingham

This book can also be purchased form all major bookshops. Although the links are to the paperback it is also available for kindle.

I read this a number of months ago and have been meaning to review it for some time. However, as all writers will know, life and writing my books somehow got in the way. This is not a reflection on the quality of this book which is excellent. 

Harry Bingham is, himself, a gifted writer and therefore well qualified to write a book such as this. How to Write is, fortunately, a very well written book. It takes you through the stages of writing in easy steps and is broken down into seven sections which outline the writing process. These are:
  • Planning
  • Prose style
  • Character
  • Placing the camera
  • Story
  • Scenes and chapters
  • Towards prediction
These chapters are expertly written and easily draw out the steps which a writer should take to "perfect' their manuscript. It mainly talks about novels but there is also some input on non fiction writing. Bingham provides examples from contemporary and historical fiction to support his reasoning. Using a quote from a book he dissects it to outline in which way the writing is a demonstration of excellence. There are many aha moments throughout the book. This is done particularly well in the section on scene but is also liberally applied throughout the book. 

This is not a book to read and put down. It is one which should be referred to throughout ones writing career. I found it to be extremely pertinent and useful and would highly recommend it to all writers. 

I am now back to reading murder mysteries, for research of course, and writing the second novel in the DI Shona McLeod Mysteries. Next weeks blog will review some of the latest novels I have read. Until then remember feeding your habit is not a bad thing when your habit is books. 


  1. Coming over for a visit from the Author's Anthology Group to check out this book you mentioned. It sounds like a book I'd be interested in reading. Will have to check it out although definitely in the paperback version.

    1. I have the paperback version and it is well worth the money. It is the sort of book you would keep and use over and over. Also as a writer you are self employed so you can put this against tax. Well you can in the UK anyway. Can't really speak for any other country :-)