From the best-selling author of and comes a witty, heartfelt, and practical look at the exhilarating and challenging process of storytelling. At once a memoir, meditation on the artistic process, and advice on craft, is an intimate and eloquent companion to living a creative life.Through a blend of deeply personal stories about what formed her as a writer, tales from other authors, and a searching look at her own creative process, Shapiro offers her gift to writers everywhere: an elegant guide of hard-won wisdom and advice for staying the course. "The writer's life requires courage, patience, empathy, openness. It requires the ability to be alone with oneself. Gentle with oneself. To be disciplined, and at the same time, take risks." Writers--and anyone with an artistic temperament--will find inspiration and comfort in these pages. Offering lessons learned over twenty years of teaching and writing, Shapiro brings her own revealing insights to weave an indispensable almanac for modern writers.Like Anne Lamott's , Virginia Woolf's , and Stephen King's, Dani Shapiro's is a lodestar for aspiring scribes and an eloquent memoir of the writing life.