Hal Zina Bennett

Author ~ Writing Coach

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Write From the Heart

Unleashing the Power of Your Creativity
By Hal Zina Bennett, Ph.D

Published by New World Library
ISBN: 1577311779 ~192 Pages

Brand New Edition 5th Printing--Now with daily writing exercises!

Areas of Interest


"Hal practices writing as a spiritual path. He teaches with the compassion and wisdom born of experience and humility. Writers and those who wish to be are well served by his insight, candor, and humor--one of a handful of real writing books!"

 ~Julia Cameron, author of The Artist's Way

"Highly recommended for anyone who writes--whether for personal journaling practice or for publication by the professional writer with years of experience."

~Kathy Prata, Branches Reviews

"Offers writers an informative, personal conversation on the intricacies of getting the heart down on the page… His chapter on the 'essential wound' is an especially good guide for hose wondering where their stories really begin." 

~Christina Baldwin, author of Life's Companion: Journal Writing As a Spiritual Quest

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Excerpts From the Book

One of my author friends once told me, "You have to fall in love with your readers. You have to realize that without their intellectual capacities, as well as their capacities to feel all the feelings you feel, you've got nothing to work with."
    Writing is always a partnership between author and reader, then, and if you somehow miss that, your work is probably not going to be successful. This is not to say that you give readers what they want or expect. When you do that, you're no longer  writer, you're a hack. It always makes me more than a little angry when I hear television producers arguing that they "only give viewers what they want." In the first place, it's simply not true. They give viewers what they can most easily get their attention with--sex and violence. Such scenes hypnotize us all. And if we are mostly offered only such imagery, we quickly become addicted. For television producers to argue that they're giving us what we want is about the same as the drug pusher who argues that he's giving his customers what they want. Neither group cares about the long-term welfare of their customers or the kind of community values their efforts are encouraging.
When we let ourselves love our readers, they know it. I know it when I read something by an author who acknowledges and respects me….

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Writing Exploration No. 5: Embrace Your Inner Critics

(Only part of the exercise given here)

We conquer our inner critics not by shoving them aside or pretending they don't exist but by fully embracing them. When you can see the whites of their eyes, hear their words, and describe their threatening or demeaning looks, they become yours, no longer the invisible puppet masters pulling your strings.
You will gain freedom from these critics and even make them your allies when you can clearly picture them in your mind's eye and even write about them. Every great novelist knows this trick and ultimately uses their inner critics as characters in their stories---making them villains, clowns, subjects for ridicule, or pathetic victims of their own arrogance or shortsightedness. Sometimes the writer even helps them resolve their inner conflicts that make them cruel adversaries, so that they grow up to be admirable people...

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Core Concept

In school we learn grammar and structure and getting the facts right. But what gets left out of these early lessons in writing is the most essential of all--that language is a partnership between writer and reader. Learn that lesson and your writing will become electric.

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All articles and images in this website are copyrighted by Hal Zina Bennett 2003-2010.  Written permission must be obtained before use of articles and images. Last modified: October 05, 2010