Questions in the Writing & Language category.
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April 3

What is the best translation of this from Latin to English?

Robert Boyle quotes Paracelsus (in De Mineralibus Tractatus) as saying this about minerals: "Sed et hoc verum est, in terra multa adhuc condi, quae mihi incognita sunt, sed eadem nec alii norunt. Certum siquidem est, progressu temporis tot tamque varia à Deo adhuc proditum iri, de quibus nemo nostrum nedum unquam somniavit." [image] What is a good translation of this into English?
posted by Philosopher Dirtbike at 7:46 AM - 1 answers

March 29

Please help locate this Robert Lowell poem

I recall two things about a certain poem of Robert Lowell I'm trying to locate: [more inside]
posted by bertran at 7:55 PM - 2 answers

Hello. I am very well. We will be victorious.

Is there a term for a pre-made message, intended to boost morale, released to the public by a leader that, at the time of the message's release, is dead/deep in a bunker/surrounded by the enemy? Can you name any examples from history? [more inside]
posted by popcassady at 10:09 AM - 5 answers

March 28

Beautifully written crime novels?

I really like the writing of Daniel Woodrell, but have read all his books. He can really turn a phrase. So can James Lee Burke -- but his plots are pedestrian and make the books needlessly long. I've read all the classic series by the big authors -- noir, procedurals, etc. Looking for little-known authors who don't let plot ruin their books. Bonus points if there's audiobooks available.
posted by dobbs at 7:23 PM - 26 answers

Poems for upper elementary students

Please recommend some poems that 9-, 10-, and 11-year-olds would understand and enjoy. They need not be specifically written for children. I would especially appreciate poems available online. [more inside]
posted by mai at 2:29 PM - 19 answers

Another "what is this book?" question

In search of the title/author of a book published in the late 90s or early 00s. It's a historical novel about an aging Victorian gentleman who is haunted by the death of his twin brother. The man eventually drills a hole in his own skull using a trepanning tool that he orders from somewhere... [more inside]
posted by Miss T.Horn at 12:35 PM - 3 answers

March 27

Library/Book pun needed!

My local library is doing a Shelf Isolation Read-a-thon to encourage people to achieve their reading goals and raise money whilst they're closed. I need to have a title for my entry, and I figured who better than Metafilter to help me with a punny name. [more inside]
posted by My Kryptonite is Worry at 5:10 PM - 10 answers

Binders full of the best emojis 😄😊😃😉😍😘😚

What are your favorite emojis? And how do you use them? Are they used to represent emotional states that are not explicitly named otherwise, or other meanings you are conveying? [more inside]
posted by spamandkimchi at 3:02 PM - 30 answers

March 26

Is there a word for this kind of person?

In social activist spheres there’s always a type that’s quick to come up with ideas and volunteer others but is slow to make sacrifices themselves and seldom does anything substantial. Is there a word for this, like how the Germans have words like schadenfreude? At a base level, all I could come up with is a "do-nothing with fantasies" but that's not quite cutting enough. "Suicide bomber recruiter" is closer, but maybe too oblique.
posted by Roy Batty at 5:27 PM - 33 answers

Looking for “Keeping quiet” by Neruda in the original Spanish

I’d like to send the poem “Keeping Quiet” by Pablo Neruda to a friend but having no luck finding it in Spanish. Thank you!
posted by Gusaroo at 5:15 PM - 3 answers

March 24

Can you help me pronounce this last name?

Can you help me pronounce the surname Zadravecz? I'm about to interview someone and would like to get at least close on the first attempt. Thanks!
posted by griseus at 5:39 AM - 17 answers

March 23

The literary equivalent of a sun-dappled landscape

What books are the literary equivalent of these paintings? Other things I'm vibing that could appear in these novels: cottages, monasteries, herbs, laborious cooking or fermenting, identifying plants.
posted by tofu_crouton at 4:29 PM - 18 answers

March 21

What advice would you give UK restaurants currently?

If you were writing an online document, intended to reassure and give safe, practical advice to UK restaurant staff that have had to shut down due to COVID 19, what advice would you include? [more inside]
posted by lucidium at 8:37 PM - 1 answers

March 19

How to cite laws in APA style?

I need to cite these two statutes in APA style. I couldn't find how to do this. [more inside]
posted by NotLost at 10:22 AM - 2 answers

March 17

Remote Spanish writing help

I'd like to do some writing several times a week in Spanish -- how could I find someone who could read and correct this for me, and how much would it cost? [more inside]
posted by andrewesque at 6:02 PM - 5 answers

Best online tool for writer's group

What's the best online tool for a writer's group shifting to online-only meetings? [more inside]
posted by fryman at 10:03 AM - 8 answers

March 15

Recommend me some highly structured home schooling lesson plans!

I’m looking for home-schooling lesson plans (for a 4 year old and a 7 year old) that tell me exactly what to do. [more inside]
posted by awenner at 7:47 PM - 4 answers

Some real good bi queer or trans novels or long reads

Despite no one being ill we are sitting around. I am hoping to catch up on some research about writing styles in male or female protagonist bisexual, queer, or transgender memoir, novels or long stories of any genre except parody. No journalism! Ideally looking for more than 5,000 words and available for free or vlc. If you're too timid to respond - that's what mods are for!
posted by anonymous at 2:54 PM - 15 answers

Large Scale Galactic Civs in SF

What are the most detailed, extensively worked out galactic civilizations in written SF? [more inside]
posted by signal at 8:42 AM - 21 answers

March 14

Decimate and Quarantine

I just learned that the word "quarantine" relates to the Italian word for "forty". And I've known for awhile that "decimate" relates to the Latin for "ten". But in regular usage, the specific numeric meaning seems to have been entirely lost or at least widely forgotten. Are there other English words like this?
posted by great_radio at 6:46 PM - 33 answers

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