Posts tagged "writing"
But I also like looking things up because I almost always learn something. Today’s lesson was that, in medical parlance, “efficacy” and “effectiveness” mean different things, and it’s a nuance that’s quite significant. Efficacy is a narrower definition that means how well something works in an ideal or controlled setting, such as a clinical trial. Effectiveness describes how well it works under “real-world” conditions. Effectiveness, for example, takes into consideration how easy a drug is to use, and potential side effects, whereas efficacy measures only how well it produces the desired result. The moral: In academia, particularly in science or medicine-based fields, you probably want to be careful about interchanging these words. But for the layman, they are essentially synonymous.

efficacy vs. effectiveness | Get edited.

I finally looked up the difference between efficacy and effectiveness today, and found the answer very interesting. So here you go, fellow nerds. Learn up.

To every writer and publishing professional:

Please know that my mom happily reads every acknowledgements section in every book she reads because “everyone named worked hard and has a mom that’s proud of them. And if their own moms aren’t proud of them, I’m proud of them!”

Hemingway makes your writing bold and clear. Hemingway highlights long, complex sentences and common errors; if you see a yellow highlight, shorten the sentence or split it. If you see a red highlight, your sentence is so dense and complicated that your readers will get lost trying to follow its meandering, splitting logic — try editing this sentence to remove the red. Adverbs are helpfully shown in blue. Get rid of them and pick verbs with force instead. You can utilize a shorter word in place of a purple one. Mouse over it for hints. Phrases in green have been marked to show passive voice. Paste in something you’re working on and edit away. Or, click the Write button to compose something new.
Hemingway
Andrew just sent me this and my whole world is exploding

emptyshallowminds said: what did you do in order to get into publishing? like schooling and such?

I think it’s equal parts schooling, tenacity, and foolishness. 

Schooling: I was an English major and I tutored writing at my university’s writing center. I got really involved with the writing center in between book club, I mean, English class. Tutoring writing got me comfortable with grammar, editing, how to talk about writing, and how to to talk to writers. I even presented at several writing center conferences, from the regional to the international level, about writing center work. 

Tenacity: Publishing is hard to get into. Internships are the way to go. I saved up money working at a bar after graduating college, working on publishing school applications and internship apps for publishing houses in my freetime. I got super lucky and had a loose connection to a Norton editor through a professor and got called for a phone interview. A month later I moved to New York. I interned for three months and LOVED it. But then all of my money had run out, and my internship was over, and my roommate had someone else lined up to move into my room in September. So, I was without a job, internship, or apartment. I spent two months going back and forth between the closet of two dear friends Steve and Katie, who’d just gotten married but for some reason still let me sleep in their apartment, and the apartment of my friends Andrew and Ian who live in Jersey City. I got a parttime job at Barnes and Noble and an unpaid internship at a literary agency. That internship turned into a job, which I was only able to stay at for about a year, leaving me a few months of being unemployed, and back on the hunt.

There are a lot of jobs open in publishing, but there are a lot of qualified people who are applying for them. You’ve got to exploit who you know. If not for my publishing friends, especially my old Norton boss, I don’t think I would have landed my new gig at a different literary agency. You’ve got to be tough. I have applied for over 250 jobs and internships in publishing in the last two years, and gotten three total. 

Foolishness: I’m in a field where we all love to work hard for not a lot of money because we love something: books. It’s a labor of love, indeed. Hollywood makes it seem like editors and publishing have big bright offices, huge expense accounts, and fancy wardrobes. I don’t know where those people work. It’s a changing industry, and it’s growing and adapting, but everyone in it is here because we’re fighting for the written word. We’re hoping that people who love video games and the internet will still stop and pick up a book, pay for it, read it, and tell their friends all about it. 

These are just my feelings and opinions of course, but all in all, I have to say it’s totally worth it. I get free books, get to talk to awesome authors and editors on the phone, and I help books hit the bookshelf every day. 

There is a tendency to place the center of the writing universe in New York City. This is understandable—countless writers live there. Have you heard about this magical place called Brooklyn? The media certainly has. Most agents and publishers are based out of New York, there are countless reading series and other trappings of the literati. There’s a certain glamour to the city and what it means for writers. And yet. A little known fact is that there are countless writers living in the rest of the country. The technical term for these writers is college professors.

Still, there are benefits to not being in The City. This week, I went to the DMV to renew my car registration and there was no line. I walked right up to the counter, had a pleasant chat with the DMV lady, renewed my tags, and went on my way. My commute takes four minutes if I stop for coffee. I have this whole extra bedroom and my rent is still less than $1000 a month. This one time, at the gas station, a man on a horse pulled up to a gas pump. It was amazing. I still spend time thinking about what, exactly, he was doing. I travel once or twice a month so I get to join civilization with enough regularity that I don’t completely lose my mind. I also get to leave the chaos of cities behind. The last time I was in New York I had a blast. When my departing flight took off, I felt… relief save for leaving my friends (and I still cannot get over how many public bathrooms were so dirty except at WORD Brooklyn where the bathroom was immaculate and pretty as was the whole store).

A Literary Flyover | Tin House - A celebration of non-New York City writers by Roxane Gay

Then reproduce on a single sheet of clean, white paper the table of contents of the book, omitting the page numbers, and substituting for each number a grade from A to F. The grades should be childishly selfish and impudent measures of your own joy or lack of it. I don’t care what grades you give. I do insist that you like some stories better than others.

Proceed next to the hallucination that you are a minor but useful editor on a good literary magazine not connected with a university. Take three stories that please you most and three that please you least, six in all, and pretend that they have been offered for publication. Write a report on each to be submitted to a wise, respected, witty and world-weary superior.

Do not do so as an academic critic, nor as a person drunk on art, nor as a barbarian in the literary market place. Do so as a sensitive person who has a few practical hunches about how stories can succeed or fail. Praise or damn as you please, but do so rather flatly, pragmatically, with cunning attention to annoying or gratifying details. Be yourself. Be unique. Be a good editor. The Universe needs more good editors, God knows.

Since there are eighty of you, and since I do not wish to go blind or kill somebody, about twenty pages from each of you should do neatly. Do not bubble. Do not spin your wheels. Use words I know.

Kurt Vonnegut term paper assignment from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. - Slate Magazine
Jane Allsop was abducted when she was fifteen, and nobody noticed. This happened a long time ago, in Surrey, in the nineteen-sixties, when parents were more careless. She was home from boarding school for the summer, and day after day the sun rose into a cloudless sky, from which Jane couldn’t unfix the word “cerulean,” which she’d learned in the art room. (She wasn’t clever or literary, and was nervous of new words, which seemed to stick to her.) “Cerulean” was more of a blank, baking glare than mere merry blue.
Tessa Hadley: “An Abduction” : The New Yorker
Some people assume being a writer is easy. This is a vile thought to me. As many writers I know say: “I write because I have to. I don’t have a choice.”
See above a beautiful illustration of this: William Faulkner’s bedroom stark and plain, with the plot to his story The Fable written onto his walls and with a coat of shellack on top to stay there forever.

Some people assume being a writer is easy. This is a vile thought to me. As many writers I know say: “I write because I have to. I don’t have a choice.”

See above a beautiful illustration of this: William Faulkner’s bedroom stark and plain, with the plot to his story The Fable written onto his walls and with a coat of shellack on top to stay there forever.

Curiosities of a reader, feminist, lady of publishing, coverspy agent, writer and editor for Publishing Trendsetter, and lover of the Midwest.

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