Questions in the Writing & Language category.
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November 23

Budding fiction writer lacks confidence (no MFA) and needs help!

Essentially 1) Do I need to know technical details of creative writing? 2) Am I disadvantaged because I don't have an MFA? 3) How do I work in relative isolation? 4) Are online writing courses useful? [more inside]
posted by dostoevskygirl at 4:55 PM - 21 answers

November 22

Abridged vs. UnAbridged Ebooks

I'd like to do some comparisons of abridged and unabridged books. Can you suggest some books that have abridged and unabridged versions that are both available as ebooks? I'm open to all genres/periods/etc, but I have a preference for books that would appear on a list of classic or must-read books.
posted by gregr at 12:49 PM - 2 answers

November 21

Books to read after Wandering Earth?

I'm looking for sci fi short story compilation recommendations. I've read Wandering Earth by Liu Cixin, which I really enjoyed for it's engaging read and what felt like fresh topics to me. Are there others that folks would recommend? Hoping to curl up with a book this Thanksgiving.
posted by ellerhodes at 8:10 PM - 3 answers

November 19

Are nous still enchantés?

Do French speakers still say enchanté(e) on first meeting or is it outmoded? What are possible (more) casual alternatives? [more inside]
posted by runincircles at 4:47 PM - 10 answers

November 17

Where can I write personal, blog-style posts for actual readers?

Looking for a place/places to write blog-style posts where there's an actual audience, or a chance to build one? [more inside]
posted by FlyByDay at 5:23 PM - 9 answers

November 15

Worlds of words to escape to

Yesterday, I read the gorgeous, perfect, sweet all-ages comic "The Tea Dragon Society" and fell in love. And then realized how badly I need to disappear into a really good book or 10. Recommendations? I'm looking for some fantasy, historical fiction, regular fiction, or sci-fi novels to read for the purposes of escapism. I'm open to webcomics, too, and podcasts/audiobooks, and kid's books, and movies. Anything where I can really sink into another world and lose myself. [more inside]
posted by cnidaria at 6:00 PM - 46 answers

November 14

Reviewing/submitting a short personal essay…. somewhere ?

I wrote a short nostalgic essay. Where is a good place to submit it and get it shared? Any good places to have a quick review of it? [more inside]
posted by Crystalinne at 2:25 PM - 2 answers

Half of the class are women? Is women?

Which is correct: Half of the class are women OR Half of the class is women? I think the former, but someone I'm editing for insists it's the latter.
posted by swheatie at 1:01 PM - 20 answers

November 12

Web service for writing a book, confidentially.

Where on the internet can I compose a book (from a browser and a mobile device) and know with a high degree of confidence that it won't disappear if I am incapacitated? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 12:09 AM - 7 answers

November 11

What is another example of nauseous vs nauseated?

In conversation this evening we were talking about the use of nauseous vs nauseated. Often I hear “I am nauseous” when from my understanding the correct usage is “I am nauseated.” However, the former is so prevelant that it has become an acceptable usage. (**Not here to argue about what is technically correct or incorrect,**) This reminded me of another example that’s been on the tip of my tongue the whole night but I can’t quite recall. It is a similar situation in which a different form of the word is used incorrectly but it is done so often that it has become an acceptable usage of such. The example I am thinking of is very similar in that “I am....” Can you think of any examples?
posted by masters2010 at 1:11 AM - 60 answers

November 10

looking for a warsan shire poem

i read a poem by warsan shire that used to be available. i can't find it anywhere now. [more inside]
posted by quadrilaterals at 2:27 PM - 1 answers

November 7

How do I focus on academic/creative work within short blocks of time?

I have a couple of creative and academic projects that I would like to get done by the end of this year, and one project that urgently needs to be wrapped up in the next couple of weeks. I have a 1-2hr block each weekday, at best, to try and get this work done -- but when I get to this block of time at last, I find my mind is all over the place and I can't get focused or achieve much. What can I do? [more inside]
posted by Aravis76 at 9:27 AM - 7 answers

November 6

Help me properly describe my father's position in the Marine Corps.

I'm writing an obituary for my father and I know it would be important to him to get the details of his time in the US Marine Corps right. I've never really understood the structure of the Corps so the odds of me getting this right are slim - particularly as I'm not 100% sure of the details. [more inside]
posted by AthenaPolias at 12:56 PM - 11 answers

November 2

SciFi for other values of Sci

Please recommend: recent science fiction books (and stories) that are based on sciences and disciplines other than the usual 'hard' ones like physics, chemistry, astronomy, math, biology, computers and engineering. Looking for things like musicology, linguistics, sociology, philosophy, criminology, economics, etc. [more inside]
posted by signal at 7:05 AM - 32 answers

October 31

Do you like ampersands? How do you like these ampersands?

We're transcribing a late 18th-century legal document at work, and our late 18th-century clerk seems to have used *two* different ampersands (&c.). Are they both meant to be et ceteras? [more inside]
posted by steef at 12:49 PM - 12 answers

Spanish videos like Sachgeschichten?

I'm learning Spanish and something which I found really helpful when learning German was Sachgeschichten - short educational videos about diverse topics aimed at children. Is there any equivalent in Spanish? [more inside]
posted by neilb449 at 6:13 AM - 2 answers

October 28

Characters that you will follow anywhere, until the end of their story

Please recommend short stories with (a) fascinating character(s). Ideally, a character or characters that you find interesting, want to read and follow within 1 page. Alternatively, recommendations (or a really good book that explains) how to write interesting characters. Filters: short stories, how-to write fiction books, Nanowrimo prep [more inside]
posted by Wolfster at 1:33 PM - 15 answers

October 26

What is the point of a bibliography if I use endnotes?

If, for instance, I am citing a book and I have the page number, author, title, publisher, year, etc. in the endnote, what is the purpose of a bibliography? All the information contained in the bibliography would already be in the endnotes. Is the information supposed to be written twice, if so why?
posted by 8LeggedFriend at 6:20 PM - 11 answers

Blog or blog post?

Is calling a blog post a "blog" accepted usage? [more inside]
posted by ramenopres at 10:55 AM - 20 answers

October 22

You're telling me a story about someone else's story

I'm looking for novels written in first person in which the narrator is telling other people's (or a person's) stories. [more inside]
posted by perhapses at 2:47 PM - 32 answers

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