For devotees of Bird by Bird and The Artist's Way, a memoir-driven guide to healing through the craft of writing
A cinematic exploration of the writing life by Francesca Lia Block, the bestselling author of the Weetzie Bat series of magical-realism novels, The Thorn Necklace: Healing Through Writing and the Creative Process offers visceral insights and healing exercises for the writer who creates as a way to process pain and adversity. Gently guiding the reader down the write-to-heal path, Block offers guideposts of awareness for writers, such as how to find a muse, channeling agony into art, putting chaos into order, ignoring the inner critic, personal perseverance, and thriving as an artist in a troubled world. The author also addresses the intrinsic value of channeling our experiences into the written word, and provides compassionate support to the reader for his or her own write-to-heal process.
You can order it here.
Advance praise for The Thorn Necklace:
Healing Through Writing and the Creative Process
(Seal Press, 978-1-5800-5751-6, $25 HC, 5/1/18)
“In this lyrical and haunting meditation on the craft of writing, Block… cracks open her psyche and lays it bare in the hopes of inspiring other storytellers-to-be. Wise and inspiring, this is a must-read for artists of all stripes.”—Booklist **starred** review
“In the midst of untangling her own deep-seated vulnerabilities and dreams, the incandescent Francesca Lia Block shares the twelve questions that help shape her words; they will become essential for every writer in search of a light in the literary wilderness.”
JADE CHANG, author of New York Times Editors' Choice novel The Wangs vs. the World
“With The Thorn Necklace, Block explores her life as an artist and shows us—through encouragement, compassion, and useful exercises—how to find and nurture our own creative selves. An inspiring read.”
EDAN LEPUCKI, New York Times bestselling author of Woman No. 17 and California
“Francesca Lia Block turns her unique punk-fairie style in a new direction in this fast-paced memoir of hope, disaster, magic, and sheer raw talent, mated with a down-to-earth approach to writing. This double dose of Block, as teacher and writer, is a combination sure to enchant and inform.”
JANET FITCH, New York Times bestselling author of White Oleander and The Revolution of Marina M.
“The best art begins with the worst pain. In The Thorn Necklace, Francesca Lia Block shepherds us through the process that transforms wounds into words. The transformation's an alchemical one. The prima materia of daily living becomes the base metal of the soul's gold. By turns personal, masterfully intimate, and practical, this book is a must for any writer who aims to get at the heart of all matters: the heart.”
JILL ALEXANDER ESSBAUM, New York Times bestselling author of Hausfrau
“To say Francesca Lia Block is a rock star writer would be an understatement. Her influence on a generation of authors, myself included, is immeasurable.It's the rare brilliant writer who is also a brilliant teacher, but she is both. I wish I could go to the University of Francesca Lia Block and get an MFA in FLB, but in lieu of that, I'm grateful we have The Thorn Necklace. What a gorgeous gift this book is. It goes on the section of my bookshelf where I turn when I'm stuck, and it lives alongside Stephen King's On Writing and Natalie Goldberg's Writing Down the Bones. Francesca shows so beautifully that by writing your story, you can save your own life—and you may end up helping others in the process. She has certainly done this for many of us.”
SARA BENINCASA, award-winning author of Real Artists Have Day Jobs
“A moving memoir and a wildly helpful guide to fiction writing. Francesca Lia Block demystifies the creative process in a way that makes the world feel magical.”
CHRIS BATY, author of No Plot? No Problem! and Ready, Set, Novel
and founder of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo)
“When we turn away from our creative souls, Francesca presages, we unwittingly harm ourselves . The Thorn Necklace reminds us that we are born to be creators.”
GRANT FAULKNER, author of Pep Talks for Writers (from the foreword)