Negotiating with the Dead: A Writer on Writing

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Cambridge University Press, Mar 6, 2002 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 219 pages
21 Reviews
What is the role of the Writer? Prophet? High Priest of Art? Court Jester? Or witness to the real world? Looking back on her own childhood and writing career, Margaret Atwood examines the metaphors which writers of fiction and poetry have used to explain--or excuse!--their activities, looking at what costumes they have assumed, what roles they have chosen to play. In her final chapter she takes up the challenge of the title: if a writer is to be seen as "gifted", who is doing the giving and what are the terms of the gift? Atwood's wide reference to other writers, living and dead, is balanced by anecdotes from her own experiences, both in Canada and elsewhere. The lightness of her touch is offset by a seriousness about the purpose and the pleasures of writing, and by a deep familiarity with the myths and traditions of western literature. Margaret Atwood was born in 1939 in Ottawa and grew up in northern Quebec, Ontario, and Toronto. She received her undergraduate degree from Victoria College at the University of Toronto and her master's degree from Radcliffe College. Throughout her thirty years of writing, Atwood has received numerous awards and honorary degrees. Hew newest novel, The Blind Assassin, won the 2000 Booker Prize for Fiction. She is the author of more than twenty-five volumes of poetry, fiction, and non-fiction and is perhaps best known for her novels, which include Alias Grace (1996), The Robber Bride (1994), Cat's Eye (1988), The Handmaid's Tale (1983), Surfacing (1972) and The Edible Woman (1970). Acclaimed for her talent for portraying both personal lives and worldly problems of universal concern, Atwood's work has been published in more than thirty-five languages, including Japanese, Turkish, Finnish, Korean, Icelandic, and Estonian.
  

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Present is Atwood's characteristic storytelling style. - Goodreads
Into the Labyrinth: A Writer on Writing. - Goodreads
If you are a writer, this book is a must. - Goodreads

Review: Negotiating with the Dead

User Review  - Mark - Goodreads

"This was very reassuring to me. The books were declaring that they were my pals; they promise to accompany me on my travels; and they would not only offer me some helpful hints, they'd be right there ... Read full review

Review: Negotiating with the Dead

User Review  - Robin Kirk - Goodreads

A wide-ranging, perceptive and sometimes hilarious look at becoming a writer, being a writer, wrestling with the art and commerce of writing and more. If you have thought it as a writer, Atwood has ... Read full review

Contents

The jekyll hand the hyde
29
The Great God Pen
59
Prospero the Wizard
91
Nobody to Nobody
123
Negotiating with the dead
153
Notes
181
Bibliography
198
Index
212
Copyright

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About the author (2002)

Margaret Atwood was born in 1939 in Ottawa and grew up in northern Ontario, Quebec and Toronto. She received her undergraduate degree from Victoria College at the University of Toronto and her master's degree from Radcliffe College. Throughout her thirty years of writing, Margaret Atwood has received numerous awards and several honorary degrees. She is the author of more than twenty-five volumes of poetry, fiction and non-fiction and is perhaps best-known for her novels, which include The Edible Woman (1970), The Handmaid's Tale (1983), The Robber Bride (1994), Cat's Eye (1988) and Alias Grace (1996). Her newest novel, The Blind Assassin, won the 2000 Booker Prize for Fiction. She has an uncanny knack for writing books which anticipate the popular preoccupations of her public. Margaret Atwood has been aclaimed for her talent for portraying both personal and worldly problems of universal concern. Her work has been published in more than thirty languages, including Japanese, Turkish, Finnish, Korean, Icelandic and Estonian.