Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Book Review Club: Tarot For Writers

I've been a bit blocked lately, so when I did my annual holiday order from Amazon, I added a copy of Kenner's Tarot For Writers for myself along with the Quantum Tarot Deck.

Kenner's book is divided into three sections: Tarot 101, The Writer's Tarot, and A Writer's Guide to Tarot Cards.

Section One covers the basics, including classic card layouts.

The second section provides suggestions for using the cards to help in characterization, storylines, setting and description, and breaking writer's block.

In the third section, Kenner gives a detailed description of each card including keywords, myth and legend, literary archetypes and writing prompts.

You don't have to know a lot about tarot cards, or even believe in them, to make use of this book to get your creative juices flowing. You do, however, have to have access to a tarot deck.

I've really enjoyed browsing through the book and plan to use some of the suggested techniques in plotting my next story. I'd recommend the book to any writer interested in trying an unconventional method to spark creativity.

Linda / Lyndi

Author's website:

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@Barrie Summy


Jenn Jilks said...

That's a hoot! Who knew? I may look for this book. What a great idea. It sure can't hurt.
I used to do Tarot cards all the time. Must dig them out and dust them off!
Here is my review.

Linda McLaughlin said...

Hi Jenn. It is a fun idea, isn't it? I've already learned a fair bit about the characters and plot for my next story using the cards.

Barrie said...

I wish I'd known about this book when writing I SO DON'T DO SPOOKY! :)

Scott Parker said...

That's a unique take on writing. I'll have to pass it along to my wife as she has Tarot cards. Wonder if it would work with her jewelry making?

Beth Yarnall said...

Oh my gosh, Linda. Thanks, I'm clicking over to Amazon to get myself a copy. Do you recommend any particular Tarot cards? I've never done it but think it would be cool to try. You know, cause I need another hobby.
Hope to see you on Sat at OCC!

Linda McLaughlin said...

Scott, I would think that a good deck could inspire your wife's creativity in her jewelry making. It's probably a matter of finding a deck with the right kind of images.

Beth, the Rider-Waite based decks are classic and fairly easy to use, but there are others with more modern images. I'll try to remember to bring a couple of mine to show you on Sat. See you there.

Staci said...

I'm glad that the cards helped to spark your creativity again!!!

Linda McLaughlin said...

Thanks, Staci. Glad you dropped by.

Sarah Laurence said...

Nice review, but Tarot is not my thing. I do love your method of reaching outside the box (or into the box of cards?) for inspiration. I also thought of Barrie’s Spooky – there’s a cool character who reads Tarot cards.

Alyssa Goodnight said...

A speaker at a recent meeting of my local Romance Writers of America chapter mentioned that she and her critique partners used this book/method to good result...and had a blast. Sounds fun! I think I'll look it up!

Sarahlynn said...

Oooh, I think I'd like these exercises. My stories are always improved by writing class exercises and this might serve the same purpose.

Rose said...

Now, this is a novel idea! I'm not into tarot cards either, but what a great way to inspire some great story ideas.

Thanks for visiting my blog; I'm not a writer, like many of you--though it's always been my life-long dream. I do enjoy reading about real authors, though, and the process you go through in creating your works. Maybe I should go buy a pack of tarot cards and this book and get busy typing!

Teresa Reasor said...

I'm really enjoying doing creative writing exercises with the book. You look at the card and create a story for the image. It's very good in helping you use your imagination.And create your own archetypes for the images.