A Writer’s Guide to Persistence by Jordan Rosenfeld (official website) is a book on cultivating the writing craft, practicing consistency, and finishing strong (wherever your writing may lead you). It aims to be refreshing and encouraging without going too easy on you–you have no excuses not to be excellent in your writing practice! The book covers everything from how often or how much you should strive to write, how to get quality editing (even on a limited or non-existent budget) and what the best publishing practice is, whether traditional, small press, or even self-publishing.
Getting Physical with your Writing
The feature that made A Writer’s Guide to Persistence (Amazon.com / Amazon.ca) unique to me was how almost every chapter ended with an exercise. I do not just mean a writing exercise, though it had those as well. I mean physical exercise. In order to work best as a writer, Rosenfeld emphasizes the importance of staying active physically, whether with quick neck stretches at the desk or turning up the music to dance. As a full-time writer, I can definitely appreciate the need to look away from my work every now and then!
Thinking Through Your Problems Approach
On a more critical note, there was not a whole lot in Persistence that was new to me. I know the importance of writing often. I know the importance of seeking authenticity and putting together a team of others to help, and many of the writing exercises were familiar. That does not mean that the information was not helpful. Jordan also lists online tools, writing associations, and small presses to consider. The frequent pats-on-the-back were at the least motivational, as well as Rosenfeld’s approach to thinking through problems and facing challenges with an honest assessment and willing drive.
In the end, Persistence wins its merit on offering encouragement and pep talks–and on the frequent reminders that there really is no excuse not to move forward with writing at any stage and with any challenges that show up. It all comes down to honesty, integrity, and a willingness to move forward.
Amanda Clemmer is a full-time writer who lives in the White Mountain region of New Hampshire with her brilliant husband and two cats. She started writing as a bored pre-teen during a move, and within a few years, the hobby grew into an obsession–and eventually a lifestyle that may or may not lead to global domination.
Amanda has been published both traditionally and independently and loves honing her craft with other writers. She has worked on fiction, poetry and article writing and especially loves delving into young adult adventures and science fiction. Her recent steampunk novel Automaton hit the Amazon bestselling list within months of being published, and she is currently releasing a weekly serial (Asunder) about an unfortunate trio of misfits trying to survive in a dying galaxy. Her characters would hate her if they knew of her existence.
When she is not writing or devising new ways to imprison the souls of her readers, Amanda enjoys board games, books (especially anything by Jules Verne), old TV shows, and playing violin. She always has a cup of hot tea ready to sip and a cat ready to snuggle with for long days of writing and editing!