This book is very well-written, detailed, and inspirational. I've read lots of "how to" writing books, and this ranks at the top. Elizabeth George shows that keeping track of the process is just as important as the actual writing of the novel itself. She provides many enlightening and very honest examples of her thinking process from when she was writing past novels. She provides real examples from previous novels of her "tools", such as her "step outline" and "running plot outline". Her process does tend to be strongly left-brained -- which may not appeal to those writers who hate following outlines and schedules. To prove her points, she uses unusually long excerpts from her own novels, as well as from many other authors' novels, such as Toni Morrison, Ernest Hemingway, Faulkner, John Fowles, Dennis Lehane, Barbara Kingsolver, P.D. James, etc. When I first read the book, I found these excerpts unnecessarily long and very distracting. The second time I read the book, I enjoyed the excerpts more, although I still think many of them could have been shortened.

My bookstore only had this book available in hardcover, but when I checked on Amazon, I discovered that it is available in softcover. I bought the hardcover, and am glad I did, because I think it will be an invaluable addition to my library.

Has anyone else here read this book yet, or read any of Elizabeth George's novels? I haven't yet read any of her novels, but plan to try out her first published book, Deliverance, from the library. Her previous two efforts at a mystery novel were never published. She wrote the rough draft of deliverance (all 500 pages!) in a mere 3 1/2 weeks! She calls that process the value of possessing super-strong "bum glue"!