Out of professional curiosity, I asked first-time author and former Google exec Jessica Powell about how she created the character, company, and place names in her novel The Big Disruption.  Continue reading...
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Whatever you read into it, the "All the king's ___" snowclone is now solidly embedded in the popular consciousness and in headline-writers' bag of tricks.  Continue reading...
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Turns out evasion can take the form of a Trojan horsepucky so subtle and tiny most would not recognize it as evasive at all. This expanded edition of The Evasion-English Dictionary shows how small, everyday, nothing-to-see-here words can hide as much hokum as the longest and vaguest jargon.  Continue reading...
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Long, cold winter nights lend themselves to absorption in a good narrative and if you're looking around for one, you could hardly do better than Frankenstein which was published on January 1, 1818.  Continue reading...
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These eight essays are a perfect way into learning about how a writer who started at the lowest rung at Time magazine in the 1950s developed to become the author associated with a body of nonfiction that is unparalleled in modern American letters for its breadth and depth.  Continue reading...
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In many areas of business and personal life, failure is being redefined as either a challenge that can be overcome with the right coaching or attitude – or, at the extreme, as a source of pride. What's behind this upbeat sense of what it means to fail?  Continue reading...
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Lexicography is famously considered an art and science, but Kory Stamper thinks of it as a craft, a term implying "care, repetitive work, apprenticeship, and practice." Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries is a wonderful firsthand account of a lexicographical craftsperson who is master of another craft: writing. Few books about words—or anything else—are this well-written.  Continue reading...
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