Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within

Shambhala Publications

For more than thirty years Natalie Goldberg has been challenging and cheering on writers with her books and workshops. In her groundbreaking first book, she brings together Zen meditation and writing in a new way. Writing practice, as she calls it, is no different from other forms of Zen practice—"it is backed by two thousand years of studying the mind."

This thirtieth-anniversary edition includes new forewords by Julia Cameron and Bill Addison. It also includes a new preface in which Goldberg reflects on the enduring quality of the teachings here. She writes, "What have I learned about writing over these thirty years? I’ve written fourteen books, and it’s the practice here in Bones that is the foundation, sustaining and building my writing voice, that keeps me honest, teaches me how to endure the hard times and how to drop below discursive thinking, to taste the real meat of our minds and the life around us."
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About the author

NATALIE GOLDBERG is the author of fourteen books, including Writing Down the Bones, which has changed the way writing is taught in this country. She teaches retreats nationally and internationally. She lives in New Mexico.
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Additional Information

Shambhala Publications
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Published on
Feb 2, 2016
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Language Arts & Disciplines / Composition & Creative Writing
Religion / Buddhism / Zen
Self-Help / Creativity
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Sit. Walk. Write. These are the barest bones of Natalie Goldberg’s revolutionary writing and life practice, which she presents here in book form for the first time. A whole new slant on writing that she developed since the publication of her classic Writing Down the Bones, True Secret workshops have been limited until now to small, intensive groups at a remote center in the rural Southwest. In The True Secret of Writing, Goldberg makes this popular seminar available to any reader.

The True Secret is for everyone, like eating and sleeping. It allows you to discover something real about your life, to mine the rich awareness in your mind, and to ground and empower yourself. Goldberg guides you through your own personal or group retreat, illuminating the steps of sitting in silent open mind, walking anchored to the earth, and writing without criticism. Just as Goldberg cuts through her students’ resistance with her no-nonsense instruction—“Shut up and write”—the True Secret cuts to the core of realizing yourself and your world.

The capstone to forty years of teaching, The True Secret of Writing is Goldberg’s Zen boot camp, her legacy teaching. Stories of Natalie’s own search for truth and clarity and her students’ breakthroughs and insights give moving testament to how brilliantly her unique, tough-love method works. Beautiful homages to the work of other great teachers and observers of mind, life, and love provide further secrets and inspiration to which readers will return again and again.

In her inimitable way, Goldberg will inspire you to pick up the pen, get writing, and keep going. The True Secret of Writing will help you with your writing—and your life.
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