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Keywords in Creative Writing

An Insider's Guide for New Composition Teachers

by Wendy Bishop and David Starkey

Paperback Price $52.90
Ebook Price $18.95
30-day ebook rental price $5.99

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"What Raymond Williams's Keywords: A Vocabulary for Culture and Society did for cultural studies and M.H. Abrams's A Glossary of Literary Terms did for literary criticism, Keywords in Creative Writing will do for its field. David Starkey and the late Wendy Bishop have created a portable classic. Keywords in Creative Writing concisely explains crucial terms and concepts related to the writing process, types of writing, theory, teaching, creative writing as an academic subject, and the business of publishing. The book is both practical and inspired."
—Hans Ostrom, Professor of English, University of Puget Sound

"Wendy Bishop once said that books about writing should be fun to read, and this, David's Starkey's heroic effort to see their collaborative Keywords in Creative Writing through to its posthumous conclusion, is that—and much, much more. Creative writers may not have known how much they've needed this book, but now that it's available, they'll find themselves wondering how they lived without it. Packed full of information, the book collects a wide range of brief, accessible, and timely definition essays on such disparate and essential topics as creativity, genre, and schmoozing. Taken together, these essays constitute a useful introduction and practical guide to what writers need to know, not just in the university and its creative writing programs, but also in the larger world of publishing and writing. Anyone who has ever thought about creative writing—from novice first time writers to seasoned professionals—will find this book an invaluable resource. Use it in your writing group, your classroom, your study. Everything you need to know is in it—and it's fun to read, to boot."
—Katherine Haake, author of What Our Speech Disrupts and other works


Wendy Bishop and David Starkey have created a remarkable resource volume for creative writing students and other writers just getting started. In two- to ten-page discussions, these authors introduce forty-one central concepts in the fields of creative writing and writing instruction, with discussions that are accessible yet grounded in scholarship and years of experience.

Keywords in Creative Writing provides a brief but comprehensive introduction to the field of creative writing through its landmark terms, exploring concerns as abstract as postmodernism and identity politics alongside very practical interests of beginning writers, like contests, agents, and royalties. This approach makes the book ideal for the college classroom and unique in the field, combining the pragmatic accessibility of popular writer's handbooks, with a wider, more scholarly vision of theory and research.


The late Wendy Bishop was an internationally recognized figure in the fields of creative writing instruction, rhetoric and composition, as well as a widely published poet and literary author. She passed away in late 2003, before finishing work on Keywords in Creative Writing.

David Starkey served as the director of both Composition and Creative Writing at Santa Barbara City College, where he is professor emeritus. He is the editor of Teaching Writing Creatively and Genre by Example: Writing What We Teach, as well as several textbooks, including Academic Writing Now: A Brief Guide for Busy Students and Hello, Writer. He was a faculty member in SBCC’s award-winning Express to Success program for accelerating English and math students.

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  • Paperback Price: $52.90
  • Paperback ISBN: 978-0-87421-629-5
  • Ebook Price: $18.95
  • 30-day ebook rental price: $5.99
  • EISBN: 978-0-87421-533-5
  • Publication Year: 2006
  • Pages: 236
  • Discount Type: Short
  • Author: by Wendy Bishop and David Starkey
  • ECommerce Code: 978-0-87421-629-5
  • Get Permissions: Get Permission

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