Book Review: WORDS by Jessica McCann


In the introduction to WORDS: Essays on Writing, Reading, and Life, Jessica McCann shares with the reader a core belief that is as intricately a part of her personal journey as it is her writer’s journey and forms the basis of her writer’s perspective from which all else flows:

Words by Jessica McCann“…this is why I write — to reflect on and make sense of all that I’ve learned and loved and experienced. I share my writing because I believe every one of us endeavors to make sense of it all. Through reading and writing, we learn from each other.”

And with those words, as a writer and fellow life journey woman, I was hooked.

As a writer, I’ve always been fascinated by other writers’ journeys — How they became a writer… What inspires and motivates them to write… What continues to challenge them as a writer… What were their biggest lessons learned.  Having thoroughly enjoyed Jessica McCann’s fascinating and compelling dust bowl era historical, PECULIAR SAVAGE BEAUTY, I was especially eager to get some insights about the writer behind the book.  I wasn’t disappointed.   WORDS joined the cherished few books on writing I’ve kept for reference on my bookshelf.

WORDS: Essays on Writing, Reading, and Life by Jessica McCann is part writer’s how-to, motivational self-help, writer’s journey, and personal memoir. It speaks to the seasoned writer as well as newbies and wannabes. It is enriched with memorable quotes from the likes of Vincent van Gogh and Theodore Roosevelt as well as valuable research on nature, history, and storytelling.  And, yet, WORDS still manages to be a fun, fast read.

“Whether you dream of writing a novel or of some other goal, my advice is to go for a walk in the park and hold on for the ride. Life is only half-lived if you haven’t bloodied your knees at least a couple of times.”






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