2082 posts tagged with writing.
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How does Paul Theroux write the way he does?

I like the prose style of Paul Theroux's travel writing. How's he do it? It seems very distinctive, but I can't quite put my finger on it. Anyone have any nuts-and-bolts insights into how he achieves those effects, both in terms of his prose mechanics and his "voice"?
posted by decoherence on Mar 22, 2008 - 5 answers

What are my rights for republishing screenshots/promotional material in an academic text?

What right do I have to republish software screenshots and promotional material within a critical/academic context? Do I need to get formal permission from the corporations that own & distribute this material? [more inside]
posted by serial_consign on Mar 21, 2008 - 6 answers

Why does the devil keep coming here?

The devil visiting earth seems to be a pretty common happening in certain litterature or films. I am looking for examples of what he actually does when coming here. [more inside]
posted by ilike on Mar 21, 2008 - 51 answers

How to write movie descriptions?

How do I write short (ca. 150 words) and engaging descriptions of movies in English without sounding too subjective (I don't want to use the first person POV)? The people reading will be average movie goers. Any tips, examples or links that you can recommend? Many thanks!
posted by Foci for Analysis on Mar 20, 2008 - 8 answers

Project Manager ain't happy, ain't nobody happy

Good online resources for help with writing procedures and creating flowcharts? [more inside]
posted by syzygy on Mar 18, 2008 - 2 answers

How Things 'Become': The Infinity of Definition

I am looking for writings on the infinity of definition. [more inside]
posted by 0bvious on Mar 13, 2008 - 32 answers

How do you make up stories ?

How do you make up stories ? My kids love me making up stories (and then repeating them ad-infinitum !) but doing so has set me thinking about the process of creating fiction. [more inside]
posted by southof40 on Mar 8, 2008 - 9 answers

How does one write a game, anyway?

I have played a lot of D&D over the years, but I've never been the DM. My turn in the current group is coming up, so I'd like to write a campaign for them. The current one is a bit hack-and-slashy, I have in mind something more like a multi-arc murder mystery. [more inside]
posted by ysabet on Mar 5, 2008 - 12 answers

How do I get out of debt and get my writing back on track?

I just moved 4,000 miles to Washington, DC and took a job with far less salary than I am worth in a new industry for the fringe benefits. I have about $18,000 in CC debt and have a modicum of a plan but need real financial help to sort out how to pay off this debt while in the meantime making something in the mid-30's. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Mar 2, 2008 - 5 answers

How do writers find their ideas?

I'm looking for book recommendations that deal with (fully or partially) methods writers use to find interesting, fresh subjects and ideas for stories. [more inside]
posted by nitsuj on Mar 2, 2008 - 5 answers

Recommendations/sources for good erotic writing?

Recommendations/sources for good erotic writing? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Mar 1, 2008 - 16 answers

Total writing noob.

I’ve always wanted to be a writer. Always wanted… but never actually worked towards it, so I have no writing-specific experience or training. I’d like to transition to a career that somehow involves writing, but I’m not sure how I can get my foot in the door. [more inside]
posted by Metroid Baby on Feb 29, 2008 - 12 answers

Ghostwriter! Word.

I've been offered a ghostwriting gig. Help me with my expectations, please. [more inside]
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur on Feb 28, 2008 - 4 answers

Can I show some of my etchings?

Interviewing with a technical writing / communication portfolio. What resources and tips for those who have gone through it or hired from it. [more inside]
posted by jadepearl on Feb 27, 2008 - 4 answers

I have no original ideas! Help!

I need to recultivate my artsy hobbies, most specifically my writing and drawing. The problem is that I can't seem to initiate anything - I have no new ideas, nothing to work on. I'd also like to grow as a writer, but I'm my own worst critic and stop before I start (fear of failure and whatnot) - I'd like to hone my skills but I'm petrified of, well, sucking. [more inside]
posted by Eudaimonia on Feb 27, 2008 - 22 answers

Where should I travel to if I don't want to sightsee?

I really want to get away from my house to finish up some screenplays for a May 1 deadline. So where can a not-so-rich person go for the last two weeks of April that will allow much peace and quiet while being both safe and warm enough to wander around in short sleeves night and day. Suppose a cost of around $1500--the cheaper the better--including return airfare to Toronto. Note that I like seclusion but I also don't drive so it needs to be someplace close to the necessities.
posted by dobbs on Feb 25, 2008 - 17 answers

I've got the "crap" part down, but...

I'm looking for Web sites premised on the production of "crap art", structured art projects for non-artists, inspiration and instructions. [more inside]
posted by loiseau on Feb 23, 2008 - 5 answers

MS Word: Strip all styles while retaining formatting?

I have a macro that takes an un-styled document, and tries to put text into the right styles based on what its formatting is. But, if the document already has some scheme of styles, the macro doesn't work very well. So, I would like to transform a Word document into an un-styled version of itself-- but one that retains ALL of the original formatting (italics, small caps, font size, spacing). What would be the most correct way to do this? I have Word 2003 (which the macro needs) and 2007, as well as Word 2008 for Mac. Also-- HTML doesn't work, as it doesn't retain small caps.
posted by yesno on Feb 22, 2008 - 10 answers

How to kill a deer

Short story research: what would your average, on the weekend hunter use to kill a deer (gun, bullets, etc)? What is the process after a deer is killed? What is taken, and how, and what is left? How long would it take for what is left to be gone? Thank you!
posted by Corduroy on Feb 21, 2008 - 17 answers


Tell me what cipher I need for my daily commute. [more inside]
posted by Countess Elena on Feb 19, 2008 - 29 answers

How do I physically write faster?

How do I physically write faster? [more inside]
posted by ajp on Feb 18, 2008 - 21 answers

Travel Writer's Guide to Iceland (in 4 days!)

Four days in Iceland from Friday: me and my girlfriend are travel writers and will eventually do a write up of the hotel, restaurants and attractions we visit. How can we best stray off the beaten path in only FOUR days? [more inside]
posted by 0bvious on Feb 18, 2008 - 11 answers

How best to leap through time?

What books have you read that handle the mechanics of an expansive timeline well? [more inside]
posted by deCadmus on Feb 17, 2008 - 25 answers

You're Drunk!

I'm on a writing binge! What are the best upcoming teleplay and screenplay contests?
posted by dkleinst on Feb 14, 2008 - 3 answers

Help me communicate better in informal settings...

Humble mefite seeking tips for learning to express herself better (specifically, without being too quiet, sounding too serious, or inadvertently coming off as arrogant or self-centered) in the following scenarios.. [more inside]
posted by pearl228 on Feb 13, 2008 - 14 answers

How Do I Market a Free Course?

OK, now my Course is free. How do I tell people? [more inside]
posted by mbarryf on Feb 12, 2008 - 7 answers

distraction free writing

What hardware and software give you the best writing experience? Hardware, like models of laptops, pdas, typewriters, keyboards, mice, etc Software like apps, webapps, userscripts, preferences, etc And in addition to your personal preference, what would you recommend to me if I want to have this gloarious writing experience on an all-day battery?
posted by oneous on Feb 12, 2008 - 10 answers


How does one, in scriptwriting, correctly describe sequences in which a movie is shown (at length)? In other words - a movie inside of a movie.
posted by matkline on Feb 11, 2008 - 6 answers

Can I work as a writer or medical liaison at a corporation, and pursue freelance journalism, simultaneously? Or would this be a conflict of interest?

Can I work as a writer or medical liaison at a corporation, and pursue freelance journalism, simultaneously? Or would this be a conflict of interest? [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Feb 8, 2008 - 4 answers

Where's the great Mormon novel?

There are about the same number of Mormons in the US as there are Jews. The founding of the Mormon religion happened relatively close to when large Jewish migration to the US began. Both Mormons and Jews had to deal with persecution. There are countless novels about the Jewish-American experience. Where's the great Mormon novel? [more inside]
posted by ShooBoo on Feb 7, 2008 - 35 answers

College-level "book reports" -- are they possible?

I'm teaching a feature writing class, and I'd like to require my students to read a nonfiction book by the end of the semester -- ala Tracy Kidder or John McPhee. I'd like them to do some sort of "book report" or presentation to the class at the end of the semester on the book they chose -- how do I make this assignment not lame? [more inside]
posted by printchick on Feb 5, 2008 - 16 answers

help my diary become dear to me

Personal journal-keeping - something I've wanted to be consistent with, but haven't. So, what works for you journalers to keep you journaling or at least keep coming back to journaling? [more inside]
posted by lucyleaf on Feb 4, 2008 - 26 answers

if i empty my mind what will i think?

Can meditation help me become a better writer? [more inside]
posted by robotdog on Feb 2, 2008 - 13 answers

How to write law school exam answers?

How do I adjust my writing style to fit law school exams? [more inside]
posted by Navelgazer on Feb 2, 2008 - 22 answers

Nighttime note taking tools?

Are there any unique, cool, and quiet middle-of-the-night note-taking solutions out there? [more inside]
posted by TheManChild2000 on Feb 2, 2008 - 16 answers

How do they make them shows on the teevee?

How are serial television dramas, like "Deadwood," written? [more inside]
posted by M.C. Lo-Carb! on Jan 31, 2008 - 15 answers

If writing stuff be the food of love...

Quotefilter: help me find a quote that speaks of both love and writing.... [more inside]
posted by Neonshock on Jan 30, 2008 - 10 answers

Compiler, instruction,... Whats your function?

I want to conquer my apparent inability to comprehend or write code. I'm looking for stories (or real life applicable tips from those of you who write code for a living) where you had the "A HA, I understand this finally" epiphany moment. I realize this might sound like an overly generic question, which is why there is .... [more inside]
posted by jmnugent on Jan 29, 2008 - 55 answers

Looking for Chicago fiction writing groups.

Please recommend fiction writing/critique groups in Chicago. [more inside]
posted by Work to Live on Jan 28, 2008 - 4 answers

The mimetic and narrative capacities of artefacts

I am interested in the mimetic and narrative capacities of artefacts, how cultural remnants transmit information through time and how meaning is translated once an artefact is re-appropriated or examined from a new perspective. I have several avenues of study at the moment (a list in extended explanation), but would like some more ideas. Areas of critical theory, linguistics, evolutionary psychology and poetics are all relevant. [more inside]
posted by 0bvious on Jan 27, 2008 - 12 answers

How can I write better short stories (science fiction)

How can I write better short stories (science fiction) [more inside]
posted by Wolfster on Jan 25, 2008 - 20 answers

to pitch or be pitched?

Is it better publicity to write an article, or to be a quoted expert in someone else's article? [more inside]
posted by arielmeadow on Jan 22, 2008 - 13 answers

The tip of the tongue, taking a trip to the foreignerland.

I am in a search of a program that will help me memorize words... [more inside]
posted by GrooveStix on Jan 22, 2008 - 14 answers

Who writes videogames? (not in the programming sense)

Who writes videogames? [more inside]
posted by Ndwright on Jan 19, 2008 - 18 answers

If I had a rhyming dictionary I could make this title rhyme

Which rhyming dictionary would you recommend? And why? [more inside]
posted by Slam I Am on Jan 17, 2008 - 11 answers

Films conceived by High Schoolers

What popular movies were conceived of and/or written by the screenwriter when he or she were still in high school? [more inside]
posted by np312 on Jan 14, 2008 - 17 answers

My god, it's full of Stars

I'm looking for a series of hardback science fiction anthologies I dimly remember from childhood (sometime in the mid 80s). I think it had a one word title with a number, and the series went up to at least number five. I remember two stories in particular... [more inside]
posted by Artw on Jan 13, 2008 - 11 answers

Feeding the beast – on time

Journalists of Metafilter – hit me with your tips for fast filing. My job (as a reporter at a daily newspaper) has gone really well and I just got a promotion!!!! Hurrah! But soon I'm going to have to do a lot more work in a lot less time. So I need to file my copy much, much faster. [more inside]
posted by t0astie on Jan 13, 2008 - 12 answers

Looking for an alternative to Nerve Magazine

I am looking for a magazine that would be interested in a story I've written about being in love without sexual attraction. Nerve is the only magazine that I can think of, but from the looks of things, I doubt they accept anything from writers outside of sunny California. My story isn't sexual explicit, but I don't think a mainstream/family-friendly publication would be interested in this. Does anyone have any suggestions for a Nerve-esque magazine (or zine) that accepts non-fiction that isn't supposed to make you horny?
posted by haasim on Jan 10, 2008 - 13 answers

How are things? Sorry to hear you've been laid off.

I worked at a newspaper for five years. I quit three years ago. Now, about 25% of the staff is getting laid off, including some friends. I don't have a problem talking to those friends about any of this. But then there are other people I liked but haven't kept in touch with (at most, I've seen them at a few gatherings). What do I say to those former co-workers I liked who are now getting the ax? I figure they could use a kind word and a vote of confidence. [more inside]
posted by veggieboy on Jan 10, 2008 - 6 answers

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