Tagged With writing

1

Little kids spell the darnedest things, am I rit peepl? As a parent, you might have some concern or may even be tempted to get out the red teacher pen, but know that "invented spelling" is perfectly normal, and may even be the key to early reading success.

0

"A good composer does not imitate; he steals," Igor Stravinsky supposedly said. Faulkner allegedly phrased it as "Immature artists copy, great artists steal." Steve Jobs put it most simply: "Good artists copy, great artists steal." The saying regularly inspires artists, thinkers and dorm-room poster designers. But in practical terms, what does it mean?

1

Ever walk into an art supply store and wonder what all the different kinds of pens and pencils are for? Is there a "correct" one to write with? What's the best pen for lefties? Watch our simple video guide to the best uses for ballpoints, gel pens, and roller ball pens.

0

In the course of my work, I speak with representatives from dozens of companies. By and large, these are very clever people but many seem to have forgotten one basic truth. Clear communication is about imparting useful information with the fewest words. That doesn't mean simplifying things to the point where they are meaningless. But it does mean choosing words carefully, and not babbling and over-using jargon.

0

It has been over a quarter-century since George R R Martin originally pitched his Game Of Thrones saga to book publishers. What you might not know is that the original treatment was markedly different to what we ended up getting. (For example, there was originally going to be a love triangle between Tyrion, Jon and Arya. Eww.) We take a look at the Game Of Thrones that could have been.

2

Steven Pinker, the famous linguist who isn't Noam Chomsky, doesn't think using "literally" figuratively is all that bad. "The figurative use doesn't mean the language is deteriorating," he says in a 2014 interview, comparing it to the hyperbolic use of "terrific" or "wonderful".

0

Everyone who works in a creative field, or wants to, should subscribe to the monthly newsletter Three Cents. In each issue, writer and editor Manjula Martin writes three brief essays and lists some well-curated links about creative work. It's helpful for learning industry norms and expectations, and it's a great way for freelancers and work-from-home creatives to feel less isolated.

2

Be honest -- how often do you think about the font you're using? You're exposed to words in all shapes and sizes on a daily basis, whether texting a friend, writing a resume, or jotting notes in your text editor of choice. But fonts convey different meanings, and if you pick the wrong one you could find yourself either dismissed for a potential job opportunity, or worse, laughed at by everyone in the office before they throw your resume in the trash.

9

We all know the rule: "I before E, except after C..." except... uh... something. Good news: You can forget everything except the "I before E" part. And even that will only help you guess correctly three times out of four.

8

Once a week, for the past eight-odd years, I overhear it: "It's GIF, not JIF." "Actually, it's officially JIF." If the arguers are educated in the subject, they will rattle through their supporting arguments: It's JIF because its inventor says so and it's like "giraffe"; it's GIF because it stands for "graphics" and it's like "gift".

2

The ability to write creatively is a skill not many people possess. While typically linked to the arts, good writing is also fueled by a surprising amount of science. Exploiting this knowledge can help take your prose to the next level. With that in mind, here are seven scientific ways to improve your writing.

0

I only remember one practical writing lesson from my three years as an English major: Whenever you can, put the best bits at the end of the sentence. Put the next-best bits at the beginning, and put the rest in the middle. This trick works in every kind of writing, and I wish I'd spent my university years learning more tricks like it, instead of pretending to read The Brothers Karamazov.

0

Former FBI director James Comey's testimony was released yesterday in written form ahead of his hearing today. It's a matter-of-fact recounting of a few conversations he had with the US president, so you wouldn't expect it to be an entertaining read. But it's well-crafted: Just the right amount of detail, just the right amount of scene setting. Ever need to tell a story? Use these tips to tell it like James Comey.

0

So you want to self-publish your book? You're in good company. Plenty of authors have gone ahead of you, working to prove that high-quality books can hold their own in the marketplace without the support of a traditional publisher. Amazon, of course, has changed the entire publishing landscape, but authors have been taking control of the publication process as far back as Charles Dickens, or the Brontë sisters. Self-publishing works, if done well -- and for the right reasons.