Erudition as a service?
February 26, 2014 8:30 AM Subscribe
I've started writing more (blog posts), and several times this has happened: I use the Mac's search function to look up a word in the dictionary, for inspiration, and instead I notice a PDF search result from my folder full of (sadly illegal) PDF books, and end up on a totally wonderful track. Is there a more comprehensive, perhaps legal, way to do this?
posted by mbrock to Writing & Language (6 answers total) 18 users marked this as a favorite
I was writing about meat-eating and looked up "steak," for which Spotlight found Barthes's Mythologies, which I had forgotten about, and is a perfect source. Another time I looked up "irony" and found an excellent essay in the Cambridge Companion to Joyce — I would never have thought to look there, but it gave me the basis for an essay that could be interesting.
Is there a trick that essay writers use to find this stuff, or should I just educate myself and have a photographic memory?