First off, the chapters:
Show and Tell
Characterization and Exposition
Point of View
See How It Sounds
Breaking Up Is Easy to Do
Once Is Usually Enough
Even the most seasoned writer needs a remedial course on all these things once in a while. Beginning writers are probably clueless on many items, such as voice. This book concentrates on craft. Craft is hard to explain, it’s one of those “I know it when I read it.” But finely crafted writing elevates a book to a whole other level.
In addition to clear writing, great examples and even cartoons, each chapter follows with a “Checklist” that asks questions to make sure you have a clear understanding of what was covered. Then there are exercises and answers to the exercises in the back of the book.
While there is a tendency to sit down and consume a writing book as if it were a novel, I feel with so much info, nothing really sinks in. The most effective way to use this book is to read a chapter, go to your manuscript and check your first chapter to see if you covered all the points. Read Chapter Two, apply what you learn to your second chapter while also correcting what you learned in the first chapter. The more you put the ideas into your own manuscript, the more automatic it becomes.
Whenever I lecture to writing classes, I push this book. At this point, I should be receiving royalty checks for sales.