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the writing life

RIP

John Simon, the critic who served as a model for my own foray into music criticism so many years ago, + more

Neanderthals, Barbarians, and Addicts

“I would love to know who tried it first,” writes Lee Child about opium. “I would love to know who + more

Social Media’s Good for Something. Sometimes.

Learned another word the other day—on Twitter, no less—and it’s glorious: Shambolic. My first thought was that it was a + more

Oops

Next up: T-shirts that say “I spent nearly half a million dollars on an advertising campaign and all I got + more

Word of the Day

No matter what else is conspiring against me—stupid deadlines, unrealistic expectations, idiotic drivers on the way to work—I count it + more

It’s…Complicated

The non-word nerds in my office often have trouble with what they perceive to be a lack of consistency regarding + more

Stop! Grammar Time!

Breaking news from Formula 1 today: “a first proper look at both the cars that will do battle in 2021, + more

A Little Too Close to Home…

Dana Schwartz’s “How to Choose a Writing Instrument and What It Says about You” is so dead-on that I didn’t immediately + more

Weekend Miscellany

Consistent writing will make you a better designer, according to Eugen Eşanu. Not so fast, reports John Seabrook. After all, + more

Stop! Grammar Time!

I was reading a pretty interesting article this morning about how a Pittsburgh TV celebrity rigged the state lottery back + more

How to Write Good

Nature has published novelist Cormac McCarthy’s tips on how to write a great science paper, and—surprise!—much of his advice just + more

A Writer’s Favorite Complaint

Here’s a fascinating review of John Warner’s Why They Can’t Write: Killing the Five Paragraph Essay and Other Necessities. While + more

DIY Jargonectomy

Does any part of your job involve writing? Are you employed in the marketing, communications, or PR fields? Have you, + more

It’s Like “Inception” for Punctuation Nerds

Over at the Spectator, David Crystal reviews Semicolon: The Past, Present, and Future of a Misunderstood Mark by Cecelia Watson, + more

It’s Happening

Courtesy of the inestimable Jill Poland, who once did yeoman’s work for us here at helveticka world headquarters, comes this + more

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