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Leonard L. Knott.

Cincinnati (OH), Writer's Digest Books, c1983.
Distributed by Prentice-Hall.
266pp, cloth, $14.95.
ISBN 0-89879-106-5 .

Grades 9 and up.
Reviewed by Nancy Carlman.

Volume 11 Number 6.
1983 November.

Even a veteran hater of writing can be seduced by Knott's breezy, realistic book about writing for no primary practical purpose. He makes it clear at the beginning that he is not writing for an audience of people who believe that the only reasons for writing are for advancement or publication. Instead he appeals to all of us "closet writers" and even to those of us who want to write but are reluctant to try. He convinces us that we must look at writing as a hobby with as much legitimacy as golf even if others do not recognize it as such.

The central portion of the book includes chapters on different kinds of writing an amateur writer may attempt: poetry, diaries and journals, cookbooks, letters, autobiography, family records, novels, how-to's, plays, and children's stories. He even challenges us to try the dreaded essay, noting that it is eminently suitable for amateur writers because it is short and can be written about almost anything.

The book is truly North American with many Canadian and American references, none of which is forced. Although the book is aimed at adults, teachers of writing will find it invaluable in helping them promote writing in the classroom for reasons far more pleasant than marks.

Nancy Carlman, Faculty of Education, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC.
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