What We're Reading: Bird By Bird

Bird By Bird: Some (Hilariously Biting and Widely Applicable) Instructions on Writing and Life


Bird By Bird is a sharp, funny, and deeply relatable novel by Anne Lamott about writing and the writer's journey, framed by practical advice for people who may or may not write. It offers convincing bits of solace that you are, in fact, not alone. Be it feelings of jealousy, insecurity, or uncertainty about the future, Lamott make them easy to laugh about. 

Insight speckled with snort-worthy quips kept us turning pages and taking notes through the personal anecdotes and hilariously relatable paranoid internal monologues.

Whether you write for fun or work (or neither), Bird by Bird offers the sense of urgency to go out and get shit done... a kick we didn't realize we needed so much. 

"When you need to make a decision, and you don't know what to do, just do one thing or the other, because the worst that can happen is that you will have made a terrible mistake." (114)

There's advice on relationships:

"You don't want to spend your time around people who make you hold your breath. You can't fill up when you're holding your breath." (170)

And on the importance of finding a passion:

"To be engrossed by something outside ourselves is a powerful antidote for the rational mind, the mind that so frequently has its head up its own ass - seeing things in such a narrow and darkly narcissistic way that it presents a colo-rectal theology, offering hope to no one." (102)

Plus, some truth bombs to remind us how to wield our powers gracefully:

"You don't always have to chop with the sword of truth. You can point with it, too." (156)

Looking for a new read, or just to get back into reading? Bird By Bird has got you covered.


(all photos via Instagram)