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"Indie authors enjoy faster time to market, democratized distribution to every major retailer, total creative freedom, total control over production, pricing and promotion, 4-5 times greater royalty percentages, and the ability to use low and ultra-low prices to build readership and revenues faster than traditionally published authors."

Hugh Howey and the Indie Author Revolt

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A Writer’s Life

You know that feeling when a character/storyline is taking shape in your head, and you start to craft a bit of backstory, take a Wikipedia deep-dive for additional research, and unearth a freaky level of correspondence between the historical record and what you thought were original ideas…

Yeah.

Yo ho! Yo ho! A writer’s life for me!

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(Source: oatmeal)

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As the versions of the ballad known under the title “Scarborough Fair” are usually limited to the exchange of these impossible tasks, many suggestions concerning the plot have been proposed, including the hypothesis that it is about the Great Plague of the late Middle Ages. The lyrics of “Scarborough Fair” appear to have something in common with an obscure Scottish ballad, The Elfin Knight (Child Ballad #2),[1] which has been traced at least as far back as 1670 and may well be earlier. In this ballad, an elf threatens to abduct a young woman to be his lover unless she can perform an impossible task (“For thou must shape a sark to me / Without any cut or heme, quoth he”); she responds with a list of tasks that he must first perform (“I have an aiker of good ley-land / Which lyeth low by yon sea-strand”).

Parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme…

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"Blue Monday" is 30 years old? Sigh…

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"Halfway through April Naoko turned twenty. She was seven months older than I was, my own birthday being in November. There was something strange about Naoko’s becoming twenty. I felt as if the only thing that made sense, whether for Naoko or for me, was to keep going back and forth between eighteen and nineteen. After eighteen would come nineteen, and after nineteen, eighteen. Of course. But she turned twenty. And in the fall, I would do the same. Only the dead stay seventeen forever."

— Haruki Murakami, Norwegian Wood

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oatmeal:

Know someone who had a kid recently?  This one got turned into a greeting card.  

Yup.

oatmeal:

Know someone who had a kid recently?  This one got turned into a greeting card.  

Yup.

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Slash is clearly a word to watch. Slash I do mean word, not punctuation mark. The emergence of a new conjunction/conjunctive adverb (let alone one stemming from a punctuation mark) is like a rare-bird sighting in the world of linguistics: an innovation in the slang of young people embedding itself as a function word in the language.

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"ASTROFF. You can burn peat in your stoves and build your sheds of stone. Oh, I don’t object, of course, to cutting wood from necessity, but why destroy the forests? The woods of Russia are trembling under the blows of the axe. Millions of trees have perished. The homes of the wild animals and birds have been desolated; the rivers are shrinking, and many beautiful landscapes are gone forever. And why? Because men are too lazy and stupid to stoop down and pick up their fuel from the ground. [To HELENA] Am I not right, Madame? Who but a stupid barbarian could burn so much beauty in his stove and destroy that which he cannot make? Man is endowed with reason and the power to create, so that he may increase that which has been given him, but until now he has not created, but demolished. The forests are disappearing, the rivers are running dry, the game is exterminated, the climate is spoiled, and the earth becomes poorer and uglier every day. [To VOITSKI] I read irony in your eye; you do not take what I am saying seriously, and—and—after all, it may very well be nonsense. But when I pass peasant-forests that I have preserved from the axe, or hear the rustling of the young plantations set out with my own hands, I feel as if I had had some small share in improving the climate, and that if mankind is happy a thousand years from now I will have been a little bit responsible for their happiness. When I plant a little birch tree and then see it budding into young green and swaying in the wind, my heart swells with pride…"

Chekhov, Anton Pavlovich. Uncle Vanya (Kindle Locations 142-147). 1st World Library. Kindle Edition.

First published? 1897. Sigh.