cover image The Writing Diet: Write Yourself Right-Size

The Writing Diet: Write Yourself Right-Size

Julia Cameron. Jeremy P. Tarcher, $19.95 (234pp) ISBN 978-1-58542-571-6

Unlike so many diet books, this cheery addition to the self-help shelves wasn't written by a nutritionist or a fitness pro, but rather by a ""creativity expert"" who ""accidentally stumbled upon a weight-loss secret that works"" while teaching a creative ""unblocking course."" While this might sound like so much snake oil, the optimism and common-sense attitude of author Cameron (The Artist's Way) are winning. Her system is both simple and inexpensive, promoting exercise, food journaling, and something called ""morning pages,"" which are stream-of-consciousness passages dieters record after getting out of bed: ""A day at a time, a page at a time, we become mindful, acutely attuned to our personal feelings."" The second half of the book is filled with exercises, some more goofy than practical (""if your museum has a gift shop, buy yourself five postcards glorifying the body type you've got""), and stories detailing chronic overeaters paths' to weight loss success. These stories are sometimes inspiring, sometimes repetitive, but should motivate dieters to give writing a try.