Skip to content

Posts from the ‘On Writing’ Category

A Comma Splice Walks Into A Bar…

If you get these jokes, you’re a true English major.

I think my personal favorite is #6: “The bar was walked into by the passive voice.”

Grammar jokes…they get me every time. If you haven’t seen Weird Al Yankovic’s amazing parody, “Word Crimes,” then take a few minute to watch that today too.  Read more

The The Impotence Of Proofreading

Enjoy, fellow writer nerds.

This comedian beautifully captures the problems with spellcheck. You still need to proofread! Read more

Grammar Nazis Are Real

Yes, this is a real tweet. Read more

5 Terribly Annoying Grammar Mistakes

I used to edit a lot more than I do these days. Thankfully, better editors were hired for the job and I was allowed to focus on what I enjoy more—writing.

But I still know just enough about editing to be dangerous. And I also know just enough to have an opinion about some of the more annoying grammatical errors that pop up all over the place these days, especially on social media.

So here’s my take on some of the worst recurring grammatical errors. Read more

Elizabeth Bowen On Character Development

There’s an old BBC interview from 1956 with Elizabeth Bowen, author of The Death of the Heart, in which she discusses the importance of strong characters.

She poses this question: Read more

7 Myths About Being A Writer

You’ve heard them. I’ve heard them. We’ve all probably heard them at some point. They’re old myths and bad information on what it’s like, or what you need, to be a writer.

The life of a writer is portrayed one way. But, for most everyday writers, it’s pretty far removed from that portrayal.

I hope I can add some limited clarity to what it’s like being a writer, and why these are indeed myths.

So here are 7 myths about being a writer.

Read more

How To Know You’ve Reached The Peak Of Your Writing Career

If you ever write a book, I hope you’ll be able to say this when you’re finished.

Here’s what Kurt Vonnegut said about finishing Slaughterhouse Five. Read more

From Manuscript To Published Book

What happens to your manuscript after it gets approved for publishing and leaves the editor’s desk?

I thought this Random House video does a pretty good job of explaining the pre-publishing process.

Specifically, their tagging process looks useful.

If you’ve ever wanted to know what happens at a large publishing house, then here’s a small glimpse behind the scenes.

Read more

Who’s Your “Fat Guy In New York?”

The Paris Review’s interview with Martin Amis has a load of great insight. It’s just another great one in their long series of outstanding author interviews.

I thought his answer to this question was particularly good:

Read more

The Style Sheet That Influenced Hemingway

This is a copy of the style sheet Ernest Hemingway used while working at The Kansas City Star early in his career as a writer.

It’s a little difficult to read. But if you can read it, there’s still a lot of good, relevant advice in there–especially considering he used it in 1917.

Hemingway said he was heavily influenced by this style sheet throughout his career.

Take a look at the PDF.

Notice the first few sentences in the top left of the page: “Use short sentences. Use short first paragraphs. Use vigorous English.”

Yeah, that’s definitely Hemingway.

Some other excerpts:

Read more


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 31,077 other followers

%d bloggers like this: