Ooh—a new, old manuscript!

Eureka! I just found an old manuscript for a novel in my attic. Not just any old manuscript. It was in a trunk my family has owned for a century and a half, give or take a few decades. The trunk belonged to my great4 grandfather, who gained notoriety by becoming the first of the […]

First book review

This is my first book review on this blog. I have avoided reviews thus far because I have yet to succeed in slotting regular book reading time into my daily schedule. I also suspect I am a bit of a coward: I don’t want to hurt people’s feelings. But I have to start somewhere, right? […]

Enriching language

Though my father seeded my English, he tended to use language—early-to-middle twentieth century British English—that by today’s tastes was as excruciating as a giraffe in a neck brace. The polishing was done by three geniuses who nursed me—and a few hundred others over the decades—through the complexities of English language and literature in school. All […]

Facebook page fix

If you are an author with a Facebook page, you want to pay careful attention to some recent… Click To Tweet To begin with, what are these changes? The “kill bill” option On December 10, 2014, Facebook announced the Post End Date feature for page owners. This feature enables you to set a time and […]

Writing tips and things

Some writing tips for authors make you want to rebel. No matter what the vocabulary gatekeepers say, there is sweetness in using words that you and a major part of the rest of the world grew up with—using them the natural way, aberrations and all. Word wisdom I thought about this recently while editing a […]

10-finger writing dance

Sometimes, I unknowingly time travel when I am writing. Some word or phrase I am wrestling with triggers that travel. Once upon a time, my father had an Underwood typewriter. He used it occasionally to communicate with others and I used it often to communicate with myself; it was a gleaming machine I couldn’t resist […]

Why print books rule

What is it about print books that makes them so much more cuddly than digital books? Is it the “feel” everybody keeps talking about: the high you derive from sensory connection, the warmth of paper that digital devices somehow lack? Or is it the fact most of us learnt our ABCs on paper and, given […]

Timed creative writing

It is one thing being someone engaged with creative writing, like an author. It is another being a banker or a factory supervisor and working x hours a day on the same old loans, the same old cars. The same old targets for so many billions in the credit portfolio and for so many wheels […]

Online authors’ tools

I have some unusual and interesting websites for authors today. These websites perform a variety of services for users. Spruce the tweet up I really like this one, because I go with the belief that images improve your tweets. Spruce is an online site that enables you to make “instant” images with text for Twitter. […]

Writer’s block: know when to run

This writer’s block thing… My first experience with writer’s block was in Grade X. Every week, our English Language and English Literature teacher, Fr. Eugene L Watrin, SJ—I am sure that perfectionist’s soul is feasting on the Library of Heaven—set us two essays to write as homework. That particular day, I came to school essayless, […]