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Working Days: The Journals of The Grapes of Wrath By John Steinbeck Robert DeMott,

  • Title: Working Days: The Journals of The Grapes of Wrath
  • Author: John Steinbeck Robert DeMott
  • ISBN: 9780140144574
  • Page: 143
  • Format: Paperback
  • John Steinbeck wrote The Grapes of Wrath during an astonishing burst of activity between June and October of 1938 Throughout the time he was creating his greatest work, Steinbeck faithfully kept a journal revealing his arduous journey toward its completion.The journal, like the novel it chronicles, tells a tale of dramatic proportions of dogged determination and inspiratiJohn Steinbeck wrote The Grapes of Wrath during an astonishing burst of activity between June and October of 1938 Throughout the time he was creating his greatest work, Steinbeck faithfully kept a journal revealing his arduous journey toward its completion.The journal, like the novel it chronicles, tells a tale of dramatic proportions of dogged determination and inspiration, yet also of paranoia, self doubt, and obstacles It records in intimate detail the conception and genesis of The Grapes of Wrath and its huge though controversial success It is a unique and penetrating portrait of an emblematic American writer creating an essential American masterpiece.
    Working Days The Journals of The Grapes of Wrath John Steinbeck wrote The Grapes of Wrath during an astonishing burst of activity between June and October of Throughout the time he was creating his greatest work Steinbeck faithfully kept a jou

    One thought on “Working Days: The Journals of The Grapes of Wrath”

    1. Steinbeck wrote his Pulitzer Prize winning novel The Grapes of Wrath in an exhausting period of intense creativity from June to October 1938 During that period and for some time thereafter, he kept a journal in which he wrote before he started work each day Steinbeck set out what he expected to achieve on that day and recorded his hopes, dreams and frustrations He repeatedly expressed his determination to make the book a good one, but also his fear that it wouldn t be Steinbeck reported on bouts [...]

    2. I read The Grapes of Wrath first when I was a teenager Recently, I re read it, along with Working Days the journal of the Grapes of Wrath , and I could understand this novel a lot better through the perspective of the author.For example, I saw why Steinbeck separated the General Chapters from the Specific ones and why he alternated them, what was the role of the rain in the story, and why he built Ma Joad the way he did I found reading the two books together moved me a lot than before.Tom s enc [...]

    3. I found this a very interesting read I think that all authors, would be authors, and readers wondering about the process of creating a novel, would agree with me Note Some parts of Steinbeck s journal entries are slightly repetitious, but each entry is short enough that I found it easy, and not at all distracting, to skim through such passages The book begins with a 57 page Introduction lengthy, but with some interesting points to make The Grapes of Wrathhas been less judged as a novel than as a [...]

    4. msarki.tumblr post 1093374The most private of men writes a diary, keeping it current on each day he actually sits down to work on a novel which would become The Grapes of Wrath Keeping a journal was something John Steinbeck had attempted in the past to no avail But it is our great fortune that he succeeded at the most important time of his life to practice the discipline that not only earned him great literary rewards but also secured his memory in our American consciousness This journal is one [...]

    5. There is no better way to disabuse people of the notion that writing is easy than to hand them this book Steinbeck fans will appreciate the journal s insights into his personal life, but any reader should come away from this with some sense of the determination and grinding discipline that writing projects demand.

    6. A writer who talks about his feelings Doubt, confidence, joy, worry, and the push to keep working as the world collides into him I ve had this book on my shelf for a decade, at least, always intending to re read The Grapes of Wrath with it but never actually buying that book Reading it the first time on its own, though, helped me concentrate on the writing process, without the distraction of the novel s tough content I have the laziness and reluctance that is always present in the beginning p 62 [...]

    7. I coupled this with my reading of The Grapes of Wrath, which was fascinating and supports my theory that something prophetic was going on with Steinbeck There was a drive to write the book, to make it visceral and real, to preach his sermon on the greatness and failure of America as an ideal Here is what stuck out for me 1 one day at a time, 2 pages a day2 the over all sweep and separate movements of the book all existed in Stienbeck s mind prior to writing3 the way he often laid out the work fo [...]

    8. Anyone who doesn t think writing is hard work should read this collection, taken from Steinbeck s daily writing notes The poor man sweats bullets the whole time and pours blood, sweat, and tears into his manuscript Even though Steinbeck had quite a few published works by this point, he angsts constantly about how he s not a real writer, and soon everybody is going to find it out He alternates between thinking his work is crap and hoping that it s brilliant He has to psych himself up to write eac [...]

    9. I love reading people s journals and I love John Steinbeck, so that explains the four stars I hate that people can t or won t talk about the struggles they go through much of the time I know it can be depressing or considered selfish, but it s so alienating to feel something inside and see no traces of it in others It s particularly fascinating to see inside the mind of someone who went on to become a Pulitzer and Nobel Prize winning author, and to discover he is just as unsettled, petty, whiny, [...]

    10. How did he do it Steinbeck gave himself 6 months to write Grapes of Wrath after several years of research , then sat down and penned the whole Pulitzer winning manuscript in one concentrated burst in two drafts mind you How did he begin each day What was he thinking What obstacles did he face plenty how did he deal with them For a writer struggling through a manuscript, this diary is pure inspiration Even Steinbeck had days when he felt like the world was about to discover what a loser he was as [...]

    11. Again, Steinbeck s daily record of his struggles to sit down and write his novel is a gift to all writers Obviously, he worked from a plan he d previously spent a great deal of time and energy forming, and obviously his manuscript later went through editorial development with his editor and close friend Pat Covici But the day to day professional attitude toward his job, toward the process of his craft that s something no aspiring writer can ever hear enough about.It takes a long time to become a [...]

    12. This is a really fascinating book as it reveals how down on himself he was during the writing of his masterpiece It showed me the nature of all artistic endeavors being married to self doubt.

    13. His wonderful to have access to the inner thoughts, and insecurities, of one of the most talented writers of the 20thC

    14. For writers, this book is REALLY good.Steinbeck wrote this journal alongside his writing of The Grapes of Wrath He used the journal as way of keeping himself honest He required of himself that he write almost daily, around 2,000 words per day He had already written Of Mice and Men and Tortilla Flats without the journal concept, and maybe he developed this journal idea as a way to start his writing every day, but also as a way to keep track of the time he began working each day, and partially as [...]

    15. If you watch The Walking Dead, you often get caught up in The Talking Dead Huge fans of the show seek out a deeper connection to its background and characters.I suppose I was looking for the same thing here I remain a huge Steinbeck fan I came away feeling like an interloper who had no right to read the diary of a man who relished his privacy.

    16. interesting to see the process, but this is by no means a fulsome self reported account You feel some of his inner anguish and struggles, but much of it enigmatically In some ways, Steinbeck leaves us with mystery than transparency.

    17. I loved The Grapes of Wrath the margin between it and East of Eden in my mind is vanishingly thin so I was interested to learn that he kept a diary of his efforts when he was writing it Actually, make that re writing one of many fascinating details I learned was that Steinbeck wrote, polished, and completed an entire novel called L Affaire Lettuceberg that touched on many of the same ideas as The Grapes of Wrath and then, convinced that he hadn t done true justice to his subject, destroyed the e [...]

    18. More about the man himself than the content of his famous novel, Working Days The Journals of The Grapes of Wrath offers marvelous insight into the mind of one of America s most famous novelists John Steinbeck is perhaps the most well known and widely read American author, with the exception of perhaps Ernest Hemingway or Mark Twain though since his famous work Of Mice and Men is required reading in many classrooms, his work is familiar to many whether they like it or not In order to enjoy this [...]

    19. Some how I missed reading this novel during my school days, but the wait was well worth it I loved the structure of alternating chapters of General and Particular of his writing The General chapters laid the scene, using dialogue, description and exposition from various, mostly unnamed sources These short general chapters described the mood of a place, the struggle of activity, or difficulty that would soon befall the Joads The Particular story of Joads family was detailed, and the main narrativ [...]

    20. This is the journal that Steinbeck kept while writing the first draft of The Grapes of Wrath, from 1938 to 1941 It starts before he started the novel, and ends after he finished the draft The book includes a pretty thorough introduction by the editor and extensive annotations at the end, referred to by asterisks throughout the text There are some pages in the middle with pictures on them where he lived when he wrote the novel, pictures of his hand written manuscript pages, and some typed up page [...]

    21. An inside look into the mind of a mortal writer as he composes a book that he felt compelled to write While reading through these pages, we can see the very human failings of Steinbeck s ego procrastination and self doubt creep into every single page as well as his compelling creative need to finish a big book that he hoped he would be remembered for While The Grapes of Wrath was indeed that book, the window into Steinbeck s soul here is that of a book in the making, and the tenuous enterprise o [...]

    22. Would recommend YesI had to speed read this because I was unaware that I couldn t renew my library copy, and I will still have to pay an overdue fee, not that I am still kicking myself over this or anything I really enjoyed Steinbeck s journal entries, and I wrote down many lines for future reference My biggest takeaways were that he was incredibly disciplined, even though he kept saying that he was lazy, and he was very insecure, despite having already had enormous success with Of Mice and Men [...]

    23. This book makes me miss Salinas and Monterey and all of Steinbeck Country I picked it up at just the right time in my life and the frantic, prophetic, and damning words pressed into its pages will keep my fires burning for a long, long while.

    24. Boileau said that kings, gods, and heroes only were fit subjects for literature The writer can only write about what he admires About the only heroes left are scientists and the poor But the poor are still in the open When they make a struggle it is an heroic struggle with starvation, death or imprisonment the penalty if they lose And since our race admires gallantry, the writer will deal with it where he finds it He finds it in the struggling poor now This is a collection of the journal entries [...]

    25. Does it seem like I ve read a lot of Steinbeck recently It feels like that to me, but everything I read of his is so fricken good Even this, which is basically just a working journal he kept as he was writing Grapes of Wrath.I m not sure it would be quite as interesting if I hadn t read Grapes and thus had a bit of a handle on what he was talking about when he mentioned working on different parts but then again, it s been a looooooong time since I ve read it and I remember it only in broad swath [...]

    26. I m a big Steinbeck fan so it was really interesting to read this journal Since I can only see him as a masterful writer and Grapes of Wrath as a classic, it was fascinating to see him so full of doubt about the book and his abilities in general He had already been successful with Of Mice and Men, but sometimes chalked it up to luck Favorite quote I m not a writer I ve been fooling myself and other people I wish I were This success will ruin me sure as hell It was motivating to read about his st [...]

    27. Here is a strange thing almost like a secret You start out putting words down and there are three things you, the pen, and the page Then gradually the three things merge until they are all one and you feel about the page as you do about your arm Only you love it than you love your arm Steinbeck, from _Working Days_ pg 121This is a great read for writers Steinbeck s journal shows real struggles, triumphs, setbacks, and heartbreaks that he faced as he worked on _The Grapes of Wrath_, but than an [...]

    28. This was a very insightful collection of journal entries by John Steinbeck it gives a very close look into the writing process and how grueling it can be for a writer while working Throughout the book, Steinbeck s insecurities and procrastinations manifest he never felt fully confidant in how The Grapes of Wrath was going to turn out.I recommend this book to anyone who is either seeking a career as a writer, is a writer, or is interested in learning about the writing process The amount of humili [...]

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