Study Guide

Bird by Bird Perseverance

By Anne Lamott


Sorry, folks, but you're not going to get on The New York Times bestseller list if you're not committed to doing the hard work to get there, and it's not all about playing poker with famous writers. In some ways, Bird by Bird is Anne Lamott's ode to perseverance; she's convinced that being a writer takes real commitment. And, you know, we should probably believe her. Luckily, she makes it fun by giving us a boatload of inspiring stories and quotes about writers—including herself—who've kept on going, whatever the odds.

Questions About Perseverance

  1. What kinds of rewards does Lamott say perseverance will get you as a writer?
  2. What are some things that can help you hang in there with writing when it's tough, according to Lamott?
  3. Why does Lamott think perseverance as a writer is so worth it, even when she's complaining about the fact that she's not a billionaire?

Chew on This

For Lamott, learning to tell your stories and the stories of others is one of the most satisfying things you can do, period.

Finding a community is one of the best things you can do to keep going as a writer, according to Lamott.

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