Myth-busting is a big mythtake

We all know the form.  And it’s tempting, isn’t it? “(Stupid) People say this… … but the truth is this…” The problem is that your audience are more likely to remember the myth that you’ve restated as being true and not the myth-busting evidence that you’ve laid before them. In his book Language Intelligence, Joseph […]

Echoes through time: Good prose is like a window pane

“one can write nothing readable unless one constantly struggles to efface one’s own personality.  Good prose is like a window pane.” George Orwell (1946), Why I Write  

Up at first light for the Dying of the Light @DerekLandy, @Waterstones, @BasingBooks

07:15 – Queuing outside local Waterstones bookshop so that James could try and find one of the hidden, limited editions of Derek Landy’s new, and final, Skullduggery Pleasant novel The Dying of the Light. 08:15 – Second queuee arrives. 09:15 – Success!! Found the second of only five copies in the store (from a print-run […]

No shortcut to the shortlist – Seth Godin

Everyone, especially freelancers and other sovereign professionals, wants to be on the shortlist; to be the top-of-mind, go-to person for whatever your particular skill happens to be. Seth reminds us how. “After all, once you’re on the shortlist, not only do your fees double, but the amount of work increases to the point where you can’t possibly […]

Echoes through time: the soul becomes dyed with the colour of its thoughts

“Your mind will be like its habitual thoughts; for the soul becomes dyed with the colour of its thoughts.” Marcus Aurelius (AD120 – 180), Meditations

The paradox of proxies

Sometimes, when it hard to measure the change you’re trying to achieve, it’s tempting to use a proxy. Sadly, that only works when you don’t measure the proxy. Like Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle, once you pay attention to it, people start chasing the proxy instead of the original goal and the proxy no longer means what […]

Provence blue

Somewhere, deep in the heart of that region lies an ancient workshop that produces paint solely for the shutters and doors of Provence.  The secretive craftsmen – some say they are les gnomes – work almost entirely in shades and shards of blue, from a secret recipe rumoured to comprise three parts sky and two parts […]

Visual subtleties in story-telling

Two great posts from Mark Kennedy’s Temple of the Seven Golden Camels… First, a piece on costume design and how this can change to mirror the character’s evolution through the story: Costume Design, Character and Story. And, secondly, on the use of visually different scenery: The Benefits of Visual Variety. Both take a filmic, visual approach.  […]

Echoes through time: the folly and presumption to fancy himself fit to exercise it

“The statesman who should attempt to direct private people in what manner they ought to employ their capitals would not only load himself with a most unnecessary attention, but assume an authority which could safely be trusted, not only to no single person, but to no council or senate whatever, and which would nowhere be […]

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