Is inspiration worth waiting for?

inspiration

Viewing time: 3 minutes 14 seconds The Write Question is a weekly video podcast all about writing. Today's question focuses on whether it’s worth waiting for inspiration. If you have a question you’d like me to answer you can email me at daphne@publicationcoach.com, tweet me @pubcoach, or leave a message for me at the Skype account, The Write Question. Welcome to The Write Quest... Read More

The figurative language of Joyce Carol Oates

Joyce Carol Oates
Credit: Dustin Cohen

Reading time: Less than 2 minutes I like to share interesting pieces of figurative language I encounter in my reading. I write today about figurative language from Joyce Carol Oates... I generally consider myself pretty well-read, in part because I received a good education and also because I'm a voracious reader. Nevertheless, I recognize there are huge lacunae in my education. One of tho... Read More

What does ‘cack-handed’ mean?

Reading time: Less than 1 minute Increase your vocabulary and you’ll make your writing much more precise. That's why I provide a word of the week. Today's word: cack-handed... I get a great deal of pleasure — and useful information — from my online subscription to the New York Times. Installed, as it is, on my cell phone, it allows me to scroll through the site while standing in one ... Read More

Work on your personality before you work on your writing

Reading time: Just over 2 minutes There are many routes to becoming a better writer. Here’s one I favour: become a better writer by improving your sense of well-being…  My brother-in-law, Doug — who’s a civil engineer — likes to tell a joke about people in his own profession. What’s the difference between an introverted and an extroverted engineer, he asks? The answer? A... Read More

Why you should read books you hate

pamela paul
Credit: Earl Wilson/New York Times

Reading time: Just over 1 minute This is my weekly installment of "writing about writing," in which I scan the world to find websites, books and articles to help other writers. Today I discuss a New York Times article on reading by Pamela Paul... I love reading. It is my favourite hobby and my number 1 pastime. It is how I end just about every day (if only for five minutes before I drift off... Read More

How do I write a memoir?

writing memoir

Viewing time: 4 minutes 13 seconds The Write Question is a weekly video podcast all about writing. Today's question focuses on the art of writing memoir. If you have a question you’d like me to answer you can email me at daphne@publicationcoach.com, tweet me @pubcoach, or leave a message for me at the Skype account, The Write Question. Welcome to The Write Question, the video podca... Read More

The figurative language of Elif Batuman…

Elif Batuman

Reading time: Just over 1 minute I like to share interesting pieces of figurative language I encounter in my reading. I write today about a series of metaphors  from American writer Elif Batuman... Elif Batuman (pictured above) was born in New York City to Turkish parents. She graduated from Harvard College, and received her doctorate in comparative literature from Stanford Universit... Read More

What does ‘effulgent’ mean?

Reading time: Less than 1 minute Increase your vocabulary and you’ll make your writing much more precise. That's why I provide a word of the week. Today's word: effulgent... I can no longer remember how I discovered the heartbreaking New York Magazine story "The Day I started Lying to Ruth," written by cancer doctor Peter Bach. But the lede was gripping: The streetlights in Buenos Aire... Read More

Is it worth paying for Grammarly?

Reading time: Less than 3 minutes Grammarly is a free app with a paid-for premium option. Is it worth spending the money for the more expensive option? One of my clients has a subscription to the grammar-checker service Grammarly. The basic function offered by Grammarly — identifying most spelling and grammar errors — is no charge. But if you want the more robust version you need to ... Read More

Could soul music inspire your writing?

soul music

Reading time: about 1 minute This is my weekly installment of "writing about writing," in which I scan the world to find websites, books and articles to help other writers. Today I discuss a BBC podcast called Soul Music... I worry that I'm veering ever-so-slightly off topic in today's blog. The podcast I want to recommend to you — Soul Music — has nothing to do with writing. But it is... Read More