This ultimate writer’s handbook by Estelle Erasmus is something I wish I’d read when I entered the world of journalism. Ironically, those are the very same words the author opens her introduction with. To answer the call, she’s created a must-have resource for both the new writer and the seasoned writer who need direction, inspiration, guidance, a plan, and of course expert advice.
Speaking of experts, Estelle funnels her impressive experience in publishing into each chapter.
Seems to me that she’s written on a vast array of topics—fictional, biographical, narrative, journalistic—all published in major venues, which is unique for a writer and a gift to the reader. Each clip, article, or essay she’s written came with hard-won lessons that Estelle shares openly and constructively. Kind of like sitting with a writing mentor who can help inspire your ideas, then hold your hand through to the final publication. The raw honesty of her work is inspiring. She shares how life experiences make the most respected, and compelling, stories that sell. Why? Because there are others out there with the same experiences looking for validation and guidance, and well, someone that “gets them.”
Another great feature of this book is the end of chapter exercises and checklists.
The “Estelle’s Edge” tips sprinkled throughout make for little Easter eggs packed with insider wisdom and tips. She also covers the challenging topic of pitching to editors and how to build your platform as a freelance writer or amping up your expert space in the industry.
It’s long past time for a good writer’s guidebook to hit the marketplace. I ought to know, as I read as many as possible. And this book is designed perfectly for a straight read, a reference manual to be kept desk-side, and as a self-paced study course, embarking on each chapter as a lesson with suggested homework practices. But I’m not alone in my thinking. Estelle Erasmus has the same hopes for all her readers.
“Just as my clients and students keep me in their back pocket, ready to help them find their voice and get published, like a literary fairy godmother, my wish is for this book to be viewed and used as a source of inspiration and encouragement to readers and writers.” ~ Estelle Erasmus
Image and Book Courtesy of New World Library