Full time and mostly happily employed as a tech writer at company A, but it's not a long term career plan. Company B asked me to come in to see about a potential short term gig. This could be great. Or not. Help me navigate? [more inside]
I write best while I'm walking, and for an upcoming project I'd like to streamline this using some sort of speech-to-text word-processing setup on my Google Nexus phone. Google's native voice recognition in Docs hates my voice and produces only large paragraphs of semipunctuated gibberish. What app(s) + accessories setup will give me accurate, extended voice-to-text transcription with minimal oversight, ideally also with good punctuation functionality? [more inside]
I think my boyfriend might be dyslexic and I'm debating how much to bug him about getting it checked out. But how would you even treat dyslexia in a 30-year old, and is there any benefit to getting a formal evaluation and/or diagnosis as an adult? [more inside]
There are plenty of successful writer-directors out there, but I'm curious about successful directors who started out as writers only (screenplays, novels, plays etc) before they transitioned to directing. I'm especially interested in minority or female directors.
In the course of archival research, I've come across transcriptions and author's notes of some remarks that were given during a private conference in 1942. I'm having trouble sorting out the 1909 and 1976 Copyright Acts and how they impact these documents. Are they in the public domain, or are they still under copyright?
There are things that make me sad, and things that make me sad about being sad. For example, some things don't really merit a lot of sadness (especially when it is ill-informed or useless), but consistently and sincerely break my heart all the same... [more inside]
Who are the modern Robert Anton Wilsons? [more inside]
I'm already a professional writer, and have been for a decade, but I've been slowly trying to shift stakes. I feel like going for an MFA would offer valuable guidance, validation, and permission to try new things. But I also feel like maybe I'd be better off lighting thousands of dollars on fire. MFAs of MeFi, please observe my snowflakes and tell me what to do! [more inside]
I have been doing most of my research digitally for a number of years, with varying degrees of success. As I finish up my phd (!) I want to refresh my research habits and streamline for efficiency. For pdfs, epubs, and online articles I currently use several services and software platforms, only some of which are compatible. Help me best this [more inside]
I'd like to buy this for work but I didn't want to spend $50, as I'd never get reimbursed. A used copy circa 2004 is $6. Is there any significant difference between the 2004 and 2010 editions? It's probably a no-brainer to get the 2004 version but I don't want something that's completely obsolete.
As I teach it now, my first semester composition course is geared toward inquiry. My primary text is From Inquiry to Academic Writing, and Ernest Cline's Ready Player One. I'm on the hunt for a new novel. [more inside]
Where can I learn about the physics of spaceflight if I don't know calculus? What books, movies, video games, websites, etc., would you recommend? [more inside]
I need help learning how to do structural edits on longer pieces of fiction (and maybe how to think about story structure more while I’m writing first drafts as well). I’m looking for book recommendations, articles, tips and techniques, and stories of what works for you. There’s more specifics below, but the tl;dr version is: what are editing strategies that might work well for someone a) highly attuned to sentences and the beautiful details of language and b) on the intuitive side in terms of process? [more inside]
What is a great website for teaching how-to-write kanji, with animations? [more inside]
(asking for a friend) I'm writing a novel - a thriller - set principally in the Antarctic in WWII which takes the idea of the development of a biological weapon as its premise. What I need is an insight into a suitably nasty bacteria or virus that could have been developed into a weaponisable form; something that the British might have been working on towards the end of WWI; and something that could have been resurrected again in 1943 as a back-stop to deal with two possible scenarios. [more inside]
(asking for an author pal!) This scifi writer wonders: If electromagnetic waves were linked to cancer, what systems (electronic/political/social) would be impacted, and how? [more inside]
I have ADHD with a lot of OCD symptoms. I think the ADHD is primary, and the OCD symptoms are my lifelong coping reactions to feeling overwhelmed all the time and making endless mistakes. I'm now on Adderall, and it has illuminated how much the OCD slows me down and burdens me, but at the same time, many of my OCD behaviors are rational. They help me catch my many mistakes (while writing or in life) when my ADHD is at its worst. I need strategies to pull myself out or to help me immediately recognize when I'm spiraling. [more inside]
I'm a writer and former academic with a diverse skill set. I'm looking to make a major career transition, but am unsure how to find the kinds of jobs that I believe would be professionally satisfying to me. [more inside]
Can I build a new career out of the things I'm actually good at? Please help me figure out what careers could fit what I do. [more inside]
Who, out of the entire MCU (TV and Movies, but not Animated series), is the oldest character? By oldest I mean was published in comics first? [more inside]
I've been having a bit of a rough time for the last while, and I'd like to try to start writing to help me work through some things. Turns out, that's easier said than done. Can you help me get going? [more inside]
I have a paper due tomorrow, which is about 2/3rds done, but I am absolutely bored out of my mind with the topic. I had just about brought myself to accept that I would spend most of the next 48 hours being this level of bored, when I discovered that I have lost the last half-day of work I did on it, so I have to redo it. This will add the tedium of rewriting stuff I wrote already to the boredom of working on a topic I find uninteresting in the first place and feels almost unmanageable. I have perky music, a clock to race against, and snacks, but what other tips and tricks do you have for working on something that bores you silly? [more inside]
I have been asked to edit an interview using they/them/their instead of gendered pronouns. Please give me your tips / best practices for clarity! [more inside]
I'm writing a piece of fiction and have a character who works in fundraising for a big nonprofit. Is there anything I can read to find out what this sort of work is like? [more inside]
I'm thinking if writing something that heavily uses foreshadowing in any/all permutations possible. [more inside]
Can you offer some names for this line of discursive reasoning that goes "only the strongest is strong at all" or "only the most pretty people are pretty." So far I can think of two: No True Scottsman and the various ways of saying "might makes right" but I have a tip of the tongue feeling there are a lot of these.
I am working on my grad school application essay and am freezing up. I haven't had to write an application essay since 2002 and I'm not sure how to begin. Help! [more inside]
I'm trying to finish my PhD thesis. I need help, tips, anything from methods for focusing for someone with probable cognitive issues related to Bipolar I disorder to ADHD or OCD behaviors, and reducing anxiety related to this so that I can function. I would appreciate any advice anyone could offer. [more inside]
I'm just getting started on the process of turning my PhD dissertation into a book. On rereading, I'm a bit shocked by how clunky the writing is and how much I haven't said. I'd love any advice from anyone who has done this or anything similar. What's the best approach I can take, and what pitfalls are there? [more inside]
I have finally gotten over the initial stasis of PhD dissertation writing. Now that my brain came around to the idea of writing and reading all day, my body is protesting: achy back, tight legs, sore wrists. Tips/tricks/recommendations/links to ergonomic chair, pretty please? [more inside]
I had an entry-level science communications role in quasi-academia. Due to funding cuts I was let go, and fell into a job as a tech writer. But I strongly prefer my previous role and would like to advance in that career path. How do I do this? Career details inside. [more inside]
I have a nearly completed manuscript of a novel that I'm writing that is entirely handwritten. I need to get it typed up, but it's over 400 handwritten pages and I'm a.) overwhelmed and b.) trying to finish the novel with a limited amount of free time, so I don't want to spend all my time typing instead of writing. How do I get this thing typed up? [more inside]
One of my closet relatives has self-published a book and now has revisited with hopes of submission to book agents. Aside from being a really interesting and good story, he is flummoxed by the plethora of requirements agents require (synopsis page, sample page, query letters, no attachements etc). He has used OpenOffice to create and is looking for software to help make agent submissions? Any ideas? More Inside the fold! [more inside]
A publisher is interested in my unfinished book manuscript, and has asked for an estimated completion date. I’d love nothing more than to finish writing it. But my financial situation is precarious, and I haven’t been able to find a day job that will leave me with enough time and energy to write. Plus, I’m facing a rent increase in April that may cost me my home if I don’t find another source of income soon. What should I do? [more inside]
Artists/Calligraphers, help me find the perfect ink for art and writing with a traditional dip pen. Tell me your favorites! [more inside]
I am looking for book recommendations. Specifically, books that have gorgeous writing. [more inside]
I constantly overuse this type of sentence: "X, but Y." Here's an example: "I liked the new Star Wars film, but I was disappointed by the absence of Jar Jar Binks." My writing is littered with these types of sentences. I need help mixing it up. How can I reduce these types of sentences? Is it just an issue of restructuring the sentence?
seeking LA bars at least somewhat conducive for early-evening write-togethers with author pals! [more inside]
I have liked Pilot’s Precise V7 for the past 20 years, but the latest batch I bought seems to have irregular ink flow. A couple times a day, the normally-smooth ink dries up a bit and needs to be coaxed out, looking like this. I have a pretty light touch when I write, and when the V7 works it’s the best thing ever. These dry spells are bumming me out, though. Has quality control on these dipped recently? Is there another kind of ballpoint pen with the combination of smooth ink flow and a fat line I like? I lose pens on the regular, so I’m looking for something that I can buy in bunches and keep around.
You'd think Google would be best for this, but help me out: I have pieces of writing that I would like to share online (non fiction, poetry, short stories, etc.). I have joined various post-your-stuff sites, but I find most of them to be full of teens (which is great! Seems like the kids these days are just cranking stuff out...) posting teen type writing or fan fiction. I'm talking about Wattpad and similar sites. Do you know of any good writer's sites with a social/interactive element (ratings, following, etc.) that have a more mature/literary bent? Thanks! Happy new Year
Brief Shakespeare quotation on the idea of desire or love as muse / as source of creative fire? [more inside]
Hi! I have spent the last two hours searching online for the perfect paper notebook/journal gift for my SO's father (a lawyer and clergyman), and all the ones I found seem to have something not-quite-right about them, even the ones found in "best! paper! notebooks!" blogs. Dear notebook lovers, help me, please. Requirements inside: [more inside]
Why wife strongly recalls having seen an edition of The Princess Bride where all the interruptions from the reader are in red, and the introduction matches the movie with a Peter Faulk type character rather than the one with William Goldman's rambling take of being at the poolside with the starlet and taking phone calls from his wife. Does such an edition exist?i can find no trace of it online.
If one decided to publish a work of fanfiction as an original work, what sort of protections would be necessary? I'm thinking of publishing a fanfiction work by changing names and places associated with the source material to original names, but are those the only protections I should be taking? [more inside]
I have a lot of creative interests and hobbies, and I love to collaborate with others, both virtually and in-person. Unfortunately, it’s hard to find people who are interested in collaborating and willing to follow through (perhaps the bigger problem). I feel like there must be communities, online or otherwise, that help facilitate collaboration, but I don’t know where to go. More below the fold. [more inside]
Can I get specific, heartfelt, recommendations for high quality resume writing services? Would also work with an individual (i.e. not a service) if someone has really strong personal knowledge of someone who rocks at this. [more inside]
I taught college English for years, then transitioned to technical editing, where I've been working for almost two decades. I'd love to get back to teaching, but I thought it would be impossible. Now a friend of mine thinks my experience makes me a strong candidate for an upcoming opening as a teacher in his department. More inside. [more inside]
Can anyone recommend a good editing service for academic journal articles (in the humanities)? The article in question is around 9000 words and has already passed peer review and had a number of edits for style at the request of the journal but they are asking for it to be edited again. [more inside]
I’ve been a lifelong reader and writer. I’m realizing while doing more writing (and in particular editing my own writing) that I need better resources and suggestions for learning English grammar. I've been told by some editors that I make mistakes and I’d love to have a better sense of how to polish what I write and deal with the little bits of grammatical inaccuracies that sprout up in finished pieces. [more inside]
Can you think of any examples of pieces of writing that open with a . . . temporal bait-and-switch? [more inside]