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The Summing Up


Nobody would dispute that William Somerset Maugham was a professional writer. He himself saw that as the only way to write, in order to be able to produce a body of meaningful work that would contribute to the field of literature. Besides the exigencies he puts on the writer, he also outlines the essential qualities of the critic, which are indeed demanding. W. Somerset Maugham was among the most popular writers of his era and reputedly the highest paid author during the 1930s. The Summing Up is a literary memoir by W. Somerset Maugham. The contemporary reception of the book was mixed. However, the praises seemed to come with a grudge, admitted only because it was quite impossible to deny that it had its greatness. Autobiographical without being an autobiography, confessional without disclosing his private self, The Summing Up, written when Maugham was sixty-four, is an inimitable expression of a personal credo. The subject matter includes his childhood, his initial success in theatre, his transition from theatre to fiction writing, and other miscellaneous topics such as travel, and philosophy. He analyses at length writing as an art and some of the important aspects that a writer should consider; quite many pages are devoted to the drama, its construction and the audience. As several critics have pointed out, this is very fruitful reading for aspiring writers. Enjoy free online English audiobook “The Summing Up”, a literary memoir by William Somerset Maugham.

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