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Visual Friday: The Hateful Four – Ms. Inconsistency

Visual Friday: The Hateful Four - Ms. Inconsistency

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Visual Friday: The Hateful Four – No Stereotypes

Visual Friday: The Hateful Four - No Stereotypes
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Visual Friday: April’s Fool – Editor’s Bribe

Visual Friday: April's Fool - Editor's Bribe

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Write and Wrong – What kind of Writer are you?

Write & Wrong - What kind of writer are you?

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Readers Can’t Digest – Week 46 (06-Jul to 12-Jul)

1. Aurum Press has acquired an illustrated biography of Roger Federer by tennis journalist Mark Hodgkinson.

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2. The US Authors Guild has demanded a 50% net royalty rate for e-books

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3. Barnes and Noble puts a priority on Manga

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4. Samsung gets a patent for writing on PDF files

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5. Harper Lee may have written a third novel, lawyer suggests

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Visual Friday: To DRM or Not To DRM

To DRM or Not To DRM

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On Writing Well by William Zinsser (Part 1)

William Zinsser is such a discerning writer, I wish I had sat in his class. Please read this brilliant tribute to the doyen of non-Fiction:  http://www.newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/tuesday-with-zinsser.

Reading his  best selling book On Writing is a privilege. I’ve read it before, but it’s different to read him now, which goes to show how rereading a book is more of a joy than reading it for the first time.

In case you want to read blog posts by Zinsser, you might find this an interesting resource: https://theamericanscholar.org/the-complete-zinsser-on-friday/#.VWgahdKqqko

on writing

If you are a writer, you may have heard how hard it is to be a writer. You appreciate it when people know your pain. But you may also hear the hard to digest ” Anyone can write”.

Writing a facebook post doesn’t mean you can write, you say.

It also means that everyone’s doing it and everyone’s writing.

So can everyone write? Mass literacy means that everyone does write, but is it easy to do? You still believe what you do is unique.

Why aren’t writers paid well enough? Because anyone can do it.

The crux of the argument is a heavy one, much debated. On the one hand, you have freelancers who are paid very  little indeed for writing and on the other hand you have content mill owners who argue that writers don’t create anything new and so need to be happy with the fact that they are allowed to compete at all.

But  can anyone write? I haven’t forgotten that this post is dedicated to Zinsser. Zinsser believes that writing is really hard and no fun at all. It’s a craft that’s hard to teach. Anyone who wants to write and is willing can write.

How?

Zinsser says to strip the sentence off all its adulterants—if you can do that 50% of your writing is cleared up straight away. To do this, you need to think clearly.  Verbal camouflage shows cluttered decision making—think government memos and ambivalent political speeches.

Ever since I’ve been reading Zinsser, I’ve noticed his immense vocabulary. He tells us to us to be obsessive about thesaurus and it’s true, isn’t that what every writer should be obsessed about?

Zinsser knows the cliches, the lack of logic and dull phrases that constitute badly written non-fiction. You may know that a passage is badly written, but he knows exactly why the story has been written by a hack.

For instance badly written non-fiction will have no unity. The pronouns will be all over the place. Past tense is followed by present tense. The travel story turns into a brochure. To know how to write well, you have to know where you are going wrong as well.

In Part 2, we look at the essence of Zinsser’s book- how to write about places, art, science, business and sport. This book is every writer’s bible. Read it, admire and learn.

Visual Friday: Books on Writing

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Books on Writing

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Visual Friday: Reason #586754201 to Read E-books

Reason #586754201 to Read E-books

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Readers Can’t Digest – Week 34 (13-Apr to 19-Apr)

1.  Film rights for Helen Macdonald’s H is for Hawk have been acquired by actress Lena Headey, who stars in the hugely successful television series “Game of Thrones”.

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2.  Independent Centum Books will this May publish a series of titles that tie-in with the “Minions” film, after signing a licensing deal with Universal.

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3. Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu collaborate on Book of Joy

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4.  Celebrities including Sir Paul McCartney, the members of One Direction and Kate Moss have contributed to a charity children’s book about a half-girl, half-dinosaur, launched at the London Book Fair by Fat Fox Books.

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5.  Mills & Boon, Kobo and W H Smith are launching a Romance Writing Life competition, offering authors the chance to win a book deal with Mills & Boon, e-book promotions from Kobo and in-store support from W H Smith.

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