What are some works of SFF that showcase beautiful language on a par with All The King's Men, Gilead, and Raymond Chandler's detective novels? I've read plenty of SFF that has transported me, but little that's struck me as gorgeously written. Thanks!
I have always been fond of writing poetry, but lately I seem to want to expand my writing craft towards short stories. I think the most notable clincher for writers to improve their overall craft is simply by reading voraciously; with an eclectic wide range of authors and literary works. What are some wonderful literary works, authors, playwrights, short stories, non-fiction, fantasy work, et cetera. Can you recommend for me? To further my own voice and writing craft. [more inside]
I'm not a smart man. But I do enjoy well written things. But well written books, poems, articles or whatever sometimes seem to be to hard to get into. Anyhow I would love to have examples of what people find to be amazing, creative and perhaps unique in the form of the written word. I don't care if it is famous or not. The best of the best of accessible yet amazingly written works. Thanks!
How can I get better at organizing my ideas in writing? I want to be able to write essays, long-form blog posts, articles, etc. I want to be able to use in-depth writing as a tool to accomplish things, instead of just enduring it when it comes up. I'm interested in resources (classes? books?), techniques, and advice. [more inside]
Asking for a friend: She has been asked to do a reading at her sister's wedding in a few weeks. She does not want to use anything biblical or from Shakespeare. Rhyming is ok, but it doesn't have to, and not epically long. The important and tricky part - she'd like it to be on the theme of sisters, but wedding appropriate. Help?
I am about 15,000 words into my first novel, and I'm finding it difficult to get feedback from my old English major friends. I'd like to know how the pace, grammar, syntax, etc. of my story strike various experienced readers, but I certainly don't want to put my manuscript online in an unsecured environment. Any thoughts? BTW, I live in the Maine woods; no, there are no local meet-ups. I really wish there were.
Yesterday I was reading a Bukowski poem, and as much as I enjoyed it, I got to wondering: "Why is this poetry?" [more inside]
I'm looking for examples of analysis of why a particular passage of prose is excellent, or why it fails. [more inside]
Is placing certain adverbs like "however" and "nonetheless" after the first clause in a sentence an actual stylistic best practice, or just a personal preference I made up? [more inside]
Is there any art that you find ugly, but still admire or value? [more inside]
As a reader of fiction (especially if you're a devotee of speculative fiction), how much do you like detailed descriptions and/or lists as part of the story? What if the story switches between detail and expediency? [more inside]
Please recommend books that are similar to 'The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time' (not just ones about autism). [more inside]
Long-shot-arama: 13 years ago, I read a poem at my daughter's christening and then promptly lost the piece of paper I'd read it from. It was all about the things I wished she would have in her life, and I'm 98% sure it ended with "but most of all, I wish you love". Ring any bells? [more inside]
What books/authors can you recommend where there is poetry in the prose? [more inside]
My best friend is getting married! And I am doing the reading! Yay! Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to find anything that really fits the couple. Halp. [more inside]
Which novels and short stories, from any genre, since WWII, have been the most influential on prose style in "literary fiction"?
Are there any websites with large collections of exquisite examples of prose? [more inside]
Ulysses. Lolita. Proust. Books where the quality of the prose is the best part, more so than the plot. Help me find more? [more inside]
What are unnecessarily formal "academic jargon" type words that I should seek and destroy in my papers? [more inside]
Who're good speculative fiction writers who write fine prose? [more inside]
Please recommend some great prose stylists! [more inside]
What young adult novels (or chapter books for kids) are written in particularly elegant prose styles? (Bonus points if the story and characterization are good, of course, but I'm especially looking for books where the writing style itself is beautiful.) Examples include The Graveyard Book, Haroun & The Sea of Stories, and When You Reach Me. [more inside]
There's no shortage of excellent "what to read" threads around here, but I'm looking for something a bit more specific. The tricky part is I'm looking for a style and a point of view, rather than a particular genre or subject. [more inside]
Celebrating a golden wedding anniversary next month - photobook in production - your favourite quotations, poetry and passages (in English, Welsh and French) please! [more inside]
Please recommend some witty poetry and/or prose in the same vein as Dorothy Parker and Wendy Cope!
(Pro)sefilter: want to sell prose. Looking for advice. [more inside]
With NaNoWriMo looming ever nearer, I would like to hear your best tips, tricks, habits, and techniques for staying chained to the keyboard. [more inside]
In search of short passages of especially strong or weak nonfiction prose! [more inside]
I love food, and I love fiction. I'd love to read more fiction with tremendous descriptions of food. Any recommendations? [more inside]
Where might I find real-life examples of 300-700-word pieces of prose that are neither perfect nor unsalvageable — "problematic," let's say — on which I can practice the craft of editing? [more inside]
I'd like to buy a book for my girlfriend to help her structure her ideas in academic writing. My girlfriend is a graduate student in the humanities. She is clever, erudite and rigorous, but her ability to build an argument is poor. She finds it particularly difficult to unpack a complex concept and present its constitutive parts in a logical sequence. The book I'd like to buy helps writers with these specific problems, ideally (but not necessarily) within the context of research in the humanities. [more inside]
ProseFilter: Nabokov's Lolita was once hailed as "a love letter to the English language." I'm looking for modern and contemporary authors with similar aspirations. [more inside]
Help me come up with an evocative simile that conveys a profound but unemotional appreciation of a thing. My existing, imperfect prose is inside for your delectation. [more inside]
Could anybody suggest titles of books that are collections of prose (fiction)/poetry and photographs/drawings? Books along the lines of, say, Eduardo Galeano's "The Book of Embraces" which has short compositions about various topics and simple, yet pleasing, drawings. Thanks!
Which other authors write as sensually as John Banville?
I have been receiving experimental poetry through my blog. Who is sending it and why? [more inside]
The Great Books: where should I start? I seek timeless wisdom. [more inside]
My husband is looking for a prose poem about postcards used to create a religion. [more inside]
I would like to read Homer, Virgil and Ovid - but have trouble getting through prose - what should I do?
ForeignLanguageFilter: What tools (if any?) are available on the Internet for translating materials that are not prose into English? Specfically, I need an English translation for a song lyric I have only in French. Neither my pathetic high school slacker French nor the usual suspects are producing anything useful... Any suggestions?