August 21, 2011

Review - Views From The Loft (Daniel Slager)

There have been plenty of authors who have contributed to the Loft Literary Center over the years and Daniel Slager presents the collected wisdom of it in Views From The Loft.
This anthology for writers is a pretty wild mix of interviews, articles, and essays (or shall I say musings) by a wide array of authors. While the subtitle of the book, A Portable Writer's Workshop, suggests that the book provides actual tips on writing, publishing, critique, etc. it only does so to a certain extent. I felt that it gives more insight into individual writer's minds than being a how-to manual. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but those who are just taking their first baby steps as writers will probably not be able to gain that much from reading the book.
Personally I enjoyed most of the book, though the diversity of the content is also a drawback. I realize that the Loft's mission has always been to reach readers and writers who care about the written word in all its possibilities, thus featuring a very broad spectrum of pieces. I would have preferred smaller volumes focusing, for example, solely on poetry, compared to the vast collection at hand.
All in all I found essays that were outstanding as well as interviews that bordered on boring, but this is something you always have to live with in anthologies, as personal tastes naturally differ.
In short: A worthwhile dip into the creative minds of authors!

3/5 stars

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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