Dancing on the Head of a Pen (Book Review)

Dancing on the Head of a Pen Book Cover Dancing on the Head of a Pen
Robert Benson
Non-Fiction
WaterBrook Press
Hardback
174
Blogging for Books

In this masterful blend of the practical and the spiritual, Robert Benson invites you into the work and rewards of a writer’s life. More than a primer on effective writing, Dancing on the Head of a Pen is a winsome guide to the place in the heart where the life of the spirit meets the life of art.
 
Dancing on the Head of a Pen is a pure delight to read. Encouraging, honest, practical, and important. I needed this book.”
—Melody Carlson, author of more 200 books including Finding Alice 
 
“With deceptive simplicity and an almost seductive easiness in his voice, Benson lays open before us the filigreed mystique of the writing life in all its beauty, its unmitigated angst, and its inescapable vocation.”
—Phyllis Tickle, author of numerous books including The Divine Hours
 
“Robert Benson’s Dancing on the Head of a Pen is a gem. It is wise, witty, and inspiring—a trifecta seldom achieved by a book on the writing life.”
—James Scott Bell, bestselling author of Plot & Structure
 

After some forty years and nearly twenty books, I have learned I do not know about a lot of things, but I do know how to write a book. Some of these things are habits stolen from other writers, writers far better than I am. Some are disciplines I stumbled upon to feed both the caliber of the writing and the work of being a writer. Some of them are practices I discovered on my own after years of dancing on the head of a pen.
Robert Benson

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dancing on the head of a pen

Dancing on the Head of a Pen:  The Practice of a Writing Life” is a memoir, advice column, instruction manual, and self-help book, nicely packaged in an easy to read novella dotted with lots of hints and practical advice for those who chose to write as a vocation.  Benson shares his writing process, admits imperfections, and offers humorous insight into the life of an author.  Established authors will be able to commiserate with his approaches and challenges, while those who still dream of writing can learn from his advice and experience.

Benson’s words are encouraging and inspirational, especially for those that find putting a pen to paper hard work; even if it is work that they love.  “Dancing on the Head of a Pen” does not offer a step by step tutorial on how to become a novelist or author; however, the book does has a decidedly positive vibe and lends itself well for use as a motivational tool.  Benson provides a strong selection of resources at the end of the book aimed to help writers achieve both written success and life contentedness.

Read Chapter 1

Dancing on the Head of a Pen is a pure delight to read. Encouraging, honest, practical, and important. I needed this book.”
—Melody Carlson, author of more 200 books including Finding Alice

About the Author:

Robert Benson is the author of numerous books, including The Echo Within, Digging In, and Home by Another Way. A retreat leader, Benson writes and speaks often on the life of prayer and contemplation, the practice of faith and spirituality, and the art and craft of writing. He is a graduate of and an adjunct faculty member for the Academy for Spiritual Formation, a program of The Upper Room. He is married to the literary agent Sara Fortenberry. Benson lives in Nashville, Tennessee, and he dances on the head of a pen every day no matter where he happens to be.

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.

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