Free College Writing Courses!

It’s an ugly fact that a college education is expensive, and becoming more so. Thanks to GalleyCat’s awesome post, now we can cut that cost by a little bit, anyway. Your basic college-level writing courses include: 1. Composition I from Duke University; transferable. Starts March 18, runs for 12 weeks. 2. Writing II from Ohio […]

Tuesday’s Tips: Be Consistent

Two mistakes I see writers make a lot are switching verb tense and point of view. Let’s take one at a time. Verb tense consistency means that whatever tense (past, present, or future) you are writing in, you should stick with that consistently throughout the essay (or article or novel). Obviously, there will be times […]

How to Buy Your Way Onto the NYT Bestsellers List

Have you ever been perusing your local bookstore’s bargain bin/shelf and seen a title, or two or three, languishing there, despite having “New York Times Bestseller!” splashed across the cover? I know I have, and I’ve noticed that they tend to be in the self-help or business management areas. I figured that lots of people […]

The Brian is Wired for Story: Use It!

Poynter, a journalism organization, has a great post on how well-written prose activates the brain’s physical response centers: reading about kicking a ball activates the sites associated with motor control, for example. Based on these studies, author Chip Scanlan suggests five important tips to enrich your writing. My favorite? #5, “Cultivate a nose for story.” […]

News Flash: Writers Don’t Make Much Money

This post on GalleyCat paints a sobering reality: most genre novelists don’t earn enough money to live on. Horror writer David Keene writes that most advances for first-time novels are between $2,500 and $10,000. And you won’t see any royalties until a year after your book is published. Mark Lawrence and Jim C. Hines, the […]

Sportswriting: Long-Form Journalism Not Lost, After All

Adweek has a hopeful article: “Sportswriters Go Long Online.” In it, Emma Bazilian points out that the Internet has become “a haven for lengthy prose,” the kind that print outlets find it harder to publish. After all, “It costs us the same amount [of money] to run 3,000 or 300 words,” says sports site┬áThe Classical’s […]

Tuesday’s Tips: There, Their, & They’re

Three words that frequently get confused are there, their, and they’re. There is referring to a place: Don’t put your purse there! Their is the possessive form of “they,” meaning “belonging to them”: I give my students their grades at the mid-term. They’re means “they are”: I don’t think they’re a very nice couple.