Topic : Writing
Writers Talk About Writing
May 3, 2012By Merrill Perlman
The Internet offers writers unlimited space and so, for many, their writing expands expansively. Readers, however, have limited attention spans. So here are a few circumlocutions, or wordy phrases, that seem particularly ascendant. Occasional use of them may be needed for clarity, but most of the time, it's just inattentive or bloated writing. Continue reading...
Fine, call me a Luddite or, even worse, a late adopter, but I say, Kindle-schmindle, Nook-schnook, give me a good old-fashioned book.Yes, I have adopted, step by reluctant step, each new advance of the digital realm, Facebook, Google, Wikipedia and all the rest, and I've grown used to the virtual media's constant changing despite my constant grousing. Continue reading...
Writers Talk About Writing
April 12, 2012By Daphne Gray-Grant
When I was a callow teenager and completed my honors political science thesis in June 1979, I finished it only because my professor declined to give me another extension.Although this made me furious, I'm now very grateful. If he hadn't refused to molly-coddle my deadline-averse ways, it would have taken me the entire summer to write it. If then. Continue reading...
Michele Dunaway, who teaches English and journalism at Francis Howell High School in St. Charles, Missouri, argues that journalism is more important than ever for students. "While newspapers may be evolving and some folding," Michele writes, "the skill set journalism teaches students and the thought processes required of students should be embraced and infused into every English classroom." Continue reading...
I recently went to see a production of John Ford's play 'Tis Pity She's a Whore, a 17th-century British delight that is easily one of my all-time favorite titles to get to say. The production was excellent, but my companion and I were disappointed that the company we saw chose to drop the last line of the play, when (spoiler!) the Cardinal in the play says, "...who could not say, 'tis pity she's a whore?" Yes, that's right, they cut the line that gives the play its title. The play felt incomplete, and incorrectly named, without it. Continue reading...
Reconsidering the Thesaurus
April 2, 2012
The latest issue of the literary magazine Lapham's Quarterly has as its theme "Means of Communication," and the closing piece, by VT editor Ben Zimmer, is a reconsideration of the thesaurus as a tool for modern writers. He finds many reasons to remain optimistic about the thesaurus as a reference work (and not just because of the Visual Thesaurus!). Read his piece here.
A Monthly Column for Word Lovers
April 2, 2012By Orin Hargraves
Emotional transport is not a regular feature or goal of popular music, which seems generally to be the aural equivalent of snack food. Popular tunes are littered with disposable lyrics. And yet every now and then, the language of a song can take you outside the confines of the three-minute window to something more enduring. Continue reading...