"In the midst of untangling her own deep-seated vulnerabilities and dreams, the incandescent Francesca Lia Block shares the twelve questions that help shape her words; they will become essential for every writer in search of a light in the literary wilderness."
--Jade Chang, author of the New York Times bestseller The Wangs vs. the World
"Francesca Lia Block turns her unique punk-fairie style in a new direction in this fast-paced memoir of hope, disaster, magic, and sheer raw talent, mated with a down-to-earth approach to writing. This double dose of Block, as teacher and writer, is a combination sure to enchant and inform."
--Janet Fitch, bestselling author of White Oleander and The Revolution of Marina M.
"The best art begins with the worst pain. In The Thorn Necklace, Francesca Lia Block shepherds us through the process that transforms wounds into words. The transformation's an alchemical one. The prima materia of daily living becomes the base metal of the soul's gold. By turns personal, masterfully intimate, and practical, this book is a must for any writer who aims to get at the heart of all matters: the heart.
--Jill Alexander Essbaum, author of the New York Times bestseller Hausfrau
"A moving memoir and a wildly helpful guide to fiction writing. Francesca Lia Block demystifies the creative process in a way that makes the world feel magical."
--Chris Baty, author of No Plot? No Problem! and Ready, Set, Novel and founder of National Novel Writing Month
"Francesca's work stares unblinkingly into the face of human complexity, of suffering as well as love and joy. She's a master (mistress?) of the craft."
--Samantha Dunn Camp, author of Failing Paris—-
"Francesca Lia Block helped to set the foundation for what the magical (or shall I say magickal?) realism genre
--The San Francisco Examiner
"Francesca Lia Block writes about the real Los Angeles better than anyone since Raymond Chandler."
--The New York Times—-
"[Block] is the sorceress of iridescent language."
"In this lyrical and haunting meditation on the craft of writing, Block...cracks open her psyche and lays it bare in the hopes of inspiring other storytellers-to-be. Wise and inspiring, this is a must-read for artists of all stripes."
—Booklist **starred review**
"The Thorn Necklace is a 'grimoire,' a meditation on turning agony into art, at the same time that it functions as a guide to being creative. Block viscerally shows how she has taken the setbacks of her own life ...and transformed them into literature that has ultimately inspired and sustained her readers....Mesmerizing."—Los Angeles Review of Books
"Weaves memoir with lessons on the craft of writing to create a unique and visceral guide to creativity"
"Block blends examples from her own life with analyses of famous works of literature to help writers deliver a successful story."