James Salter is one of my favorite writers. His book “A Sport and a Pastime” was one of the most beautiful, evocative and memorable books I’ve read in my life. The simplicity of his language betrays the emotional complexity of his stories and characters.
This book was taken from lectures he gave to writing students and so the tone is as if he is speaking to us, personally, about his love of writing.
He writes about his successes in writing and his failures, notably the poor reaction and bad reviews of his memoir Burning the Days.
The book is short but packed with great details about his own writing as well as writers he has worked with or known personally. I still enjoy going back to this book to flip through and read the passages I’ve underlined. This book will be another favorite in my collection.