If you manage all forty before you take a barstool at St. Gabriel’s Pearly Gate Lounge, you may feel secure in the fact that you’ve lived a rich and full life, even if only the boys and girls down at happy hour think so. And when you do belly up to that big open bar in the sky and the bartender asks: “What sort of life did you lead?” you can look him right in the eye and say, “Gabe, baby, I’m glad this is eternity, because I’ve got a helluva lot of stories to tell.”
Like many editorial consultants, I've been concerned about the amount of time I've been spending on easy fixes that the author shouldn't have to pay for.
Sometimes the question of where to put a comma, how to use a verb or why not to repeat a word can be important, even strategic. But most of the time the author either missed that day's grammar lesson in elementary school or is too close to the manuscript to make corrections before I see it.
So the following is a list I'll be referring to people *before* they submit anything in writing to anybody (me, agent, publisher, your mom, your boss). From email messages and front-page news in the New York Times to published books and magazine articles, the 10 ouchies listed here crop up everywhere. They're so pernicious that even respected Internet columnists are not immune.
The list also could be called, "10 COMMON PROBLEMS THAT DISMISS YOU AS AN AMATEUR," because these mistakes are obvious to literary agents and editors, who may start wording their decline letter by page 5. What a tragedy that would be.
Easy on the Adverbs, Exclamation Points and Especially Hooptedoodle: Elmore's Rules of Writing
These are rules I've picked up along the way to help me remain invisible when I'm writing a book, to help me show rather than tell what's taking place in the story. If you have a facility for language and imagery and the sound of your voice pleases you, invisibility is not what you are after, and you can skip the rules. Still, you might look them over.
10 very sound rules for anyone looking to be a writer...especially the Hooptedoodle part.
Written by Elmore Leonard, a prolific writer
An experiment in language and interface, Plumb Design's Visual Thesaurus is both an artistic exploration and a tool to explore, study, and analyze the structure of language. By displaying the interrelationships between words and meanings as spatial maps, the Visual Thesaurus translates language into a visible architecture.
wow...really really cool.
Your Guide to the Best of the Web for Social Science
"Airhitch®, as its name would tend to indicate, is a FORM OF HITCHHIKING, the form hitchhiking takes when applied to commercial jet aircraft.
"It is a system or method of access to commercial jet aircraft which was set up by student TRAVELERS in the late sixties to help themselves and their fellow students get back and forth across the Atlantic between the U.S. and Europe during university vacation periods without having to spend an arm and a leg, and/or without having to suffer the REGIMENTATION to which people are normally subjected in return for affordable costs in air transportation.
"It is based on the concept of SELF-HELP, i.e., helping people help themselves to achieve certain ends, a concept that was very popular during the sixties and, although it (the concept of self-help, not Airhitch®!) has fallen somewhat into disuse with the passing of the decades, it continues to prove its usefulness in the domain of long-haul international and domestic air travel -- especially as regards covering large "chunks" of distance separating budget, unstructured, exploratory travelers from their respective geographical objectives of any given moment -- at minimal cost and with a maximum degree of freedom of personal movement."
If you have the freedom to be flexible, and you want to go where these guys can get you, there's no better way to fly...West Coast to Europe for less than $250, to Hawaii for $139...need I say more?
First music, then movies -- now Internet file traders have tuned in to television, going online to download their favorite shows.
Web sites like Suprnova.org
are doing for TV downloads what Napster did for digital music files. You can find last night's episode of "American Idol," the entire collection of "The Simpsons," and old favorites like "Battlestar Galactica."
Vibrant, exuberant interpretations of ASCII art with original digital sketching techniques.
This is the neatest ASCII art I have ever seen.
Remember when they were just for kids? Not the major dollar investments they are today? Personally, I was into hockey cards, but this link has incredible pics. Especially see this one: 1912 Boston Garters
The look of the page is meant to replicate Russian constructivist book design of the 20s and 30s, the period the novel is set and the time it was written. The predominant colors constructivists used were red and black, colors that coincidentally play a significant role in Bulgakov's novel. Since Russian paper from the 20s has colored, we decided to use a simulation for our background. The cat at the upper left-hand corner is taken from a home-made book cover designed by Natasha Ushakova for a book "Muka Maki" [Maka's Torment] about the Bulgakov's domestic life. Clicking on the sidebar will take you back to the front page.
Be sure to go and check out the illustrations
"The Aug. 28, 1963, March on Washington is remembered for the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.'s legendary "I Have a Dream Speech" and the unexpectedly large crowd that was on hand to listen. As the nation marks the 40th anniversary of the landmark civil rights event, NPR's Juan Williams reports on the story behind the march."
With audio interviews and other in-depth reporting.
The term Jim Crow is believed to have originated around 1830 when a white, minstrel show performer, Thomas "Daddy" Rice, blackened his face with charcoal paste or burnt cork and danced a ridiculous jig while singing the lyrics to the song, "Jump Jim Crow." Rice created this character after seeing (while traveling in the South) a crippled, elderly black man (or some say a young black boy) dancing and singing a song ending with these chorus words:
"Weel about and turn about and do jis so,
Eb'ry time I weel about I jump Jim Crow."
For a long time, the only history known here was what people brought with them. Those who came here had no way of maintaining ties to the people they had left behind. There was no mail delivery, no roads, and no local institutions. Isolation was only matched by the scarcity of resources.
It's interesting to me to see how an isolated area developed
DJs, producers and home remixers... go get yourself some bootleg/mashup goodies.
In case you ever have any dealings with Ferengi, this may come in handy