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The Secret Miracle
The Novelist's Handbook
By Daniel Alarcon
For every genius whose ideas are prone to bouncing away before they can be caged with a word processor, The Secret Miracle: The Novelist’s Handbook is here to prove you’re not alone. Edited by Daniel Alarcon, the collection of interviews document a star-studded discussion on the craft of writing by a slew of notable figures from all walks of the literary community including Michael Chabon, Paul Auster, Amy Tan, Haruki Murakami, Roddy Doyle, and Stephen King. Get an inside look at the alchemy of writing fiction, answering everything from nuts-and-bolts queries—“Do you outline?”—to perennial questions posed by writers and readers alike: “What makes a character compelling?”
From Stephen King’s deadpan distinction between novels and short stories to Colm Toibin’s anti-romanticized take on his characters (“They are just words”) to José Manuel Prieto’s mature perspective on the anxieties of influence (“Influences are felt or weigh you down more when young”), every page contains insights found nowhere else. With honesty, humor, and elegance, The Secret Miracle gives both aspiring writers and lovers of literature a master class in the art of writing.