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Posts from the ‘Cool Stuff’ Category

Fifty Shades of Grey: Is The Writing Really That Bad?

I’ve never read 50 Shades of Grey, nor do I intend to, and I think most of you feel the same.

And from the few small excerpts I’ve read, E.L. James is no Hemingway. Her writing often gets criticized for being sub-standard, and I would agree with that criticism.

However, are we being fair?

The Grammarly team recently sent me this infographic that shows some of James’ most frequent grammar mistakes, and they give examples of those same mistakes in more respected novels.

And I totally missed the drawings of the authors when I first looked at the infographic. Pay special attention to Ernest Hemingway in a wife beater, holding a whip. Hilarious!

Take a look: Read more

64 Classic Books Battle It Out Bracket-Style

Every March, I think about making up a great books bracket, matching up 64 of the best novels ever head to head, a la March Madness style. But I’ve never done it.

This year, Book Pal beat me to it.

They created a bracket featuring an outstanding list of 64 novels broken down into four regions: The Dickens Region (pre-1900s lit), The Hemingway Region (post-1900s lit), the Seuss Region (kids’ classics), and the Rowling Region (YA).

Most of the tournament’s first round is complete with some notable upsets: Read more

Fun With Word Counts

This blog post is 133 words.

The average article I write for my day job is around 600 words.

The estimated word count on the book I’m pitching to agents is 50,000 words.

All that to say some of the word counts in the following infographic from Electric Literature blow my mind.

Some examples: Read more

I Wrote You A Note, With Spotify’s Help

Yep, I wrote you a note with the help of Spotify.

Pay close attention to the song titles.

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If you want to hear the songs, look up the playlist on Spotify: It’s easy to remember: “101 Books.”

Enjoy! And have a great weekend!

*HT to the Atlanta Hawks Twitter account for giving me the idea.

Literary Food At Its Finest, Courtesy Of Top Chef

I hate the word “foodie,” but I could probably be classified as one.

I’ll eat anything, and I love going out to a good restaurant. Most of my family’s vacations are built around cities that have a diverse restaurant scene.

Our guilty pleasure is cooking competition shows. Top Chef, MasterChef, Hell’s Kitchen, Chopped—we watch ‘em all. So a few weeks ago, while sitting down with my wife to watch a DVR’d episode of Top Chef, I was delighted to see that the featured elimination challenge had a literary theme.

Cooking and literature—together it’s awesome!

With the show being hosted in Boston this season, the chefs were asked to create a dish inspired by a famous New England author. The choices included Stephen King, Edgar Allen Poe, Emily Dickinson, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Henry David Thoreau, and Dr. Seuss. Read more

Infographic: When Did Famous Authors Publish Their Breakthrough Novels?

This is a fascinating infographic that was sent my way.

The graphic shows the age at which dozens of famous authors wrote their first book, their first breakthrough book, in which years of life they published other books, and when they died.

It gives you a good idea of how prolific some writers are—to a fault, in some cases, I would say.

You can view the full infographic at BlinkBox Books by clicking on the image below.


Explore the careers of some of the world’s most successful authors. Click image to open interactive version (via Blinkbox Books).

Some thoughts: Read more

The 101 Books 2014 Christmas Gift Guide

Last year’s 101 Books Christmas Gift Guide was a moderate success so let’s give it another go.

I try to get a little creative with these. Everybody knows about gift cards, bookmarks, and such, but what are some of the more unusual items you maybe haven’t thought about for the book lover in your life?

How about… Read more

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