Confused I Know I Am!
Punctuation With only 14 common punctuation marks, why do so many get them wrong. Confused I Know I Am!



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Articles

Hard Fact to Fantasy: An Authors Journey

Hard Fact to Fantasy: An Authors Journey

Lord Byron once wrote “I hate things all fiction...there should always be some foundation of fact”. As a writer who spent two decades churning out twenty non-fiction books and more than 170 hours of documentary television scripts I know a fair amount about the ‘foundation of fact’ part of His Lordship’s statement. For the non-fiction writer, research is a way of life. But it was only when I began writing fantasy that I learned that a factual foundation is one of the best allies a writer of...
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From the Twin Towers to the Two Towers

From the Twin Towers to the Two Towers

J.R.R. Tolkien was a literary scholar and novelist. Over the last few years his books have become even more popular due to Peter Jackson’s film adaptations of “Lord of the Rings” and “The Hobbit.” I moved to the Birmingham area, in the West Midlands of England a few years ago, but it was only last year that I discovered Tolkien’s connection to the area and how it featured prominently during the early years of his life...
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So You Have Finished Writing Your Book

So You Have Finished Writing Your Book

So you have finished your book. Wheee!! Break out the champagne. You deserve it. But now you have sobered up, what do you do now? Well, the first thing is to put it away and forget about it, at least for a fortnight. Go on, forget all about it. Weed the garden. Tidy your desk. Write a few short stories. Then get it out again. The next thing you need to do is read it through, as critically as possible. Read it out loud, that is the best thing (stock up on the throat sweets). Make more...
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Short Stories

Down-Well Visit

Down-Well Visit

Regina Windass sighed deeply as she looked at the Blood Pudding on her plate. There were some things she knew that she would have to face every time she came down-well. Unfortunately, a black mass of ... sausage, with too much Pennyroyal, was one of those things. The housekeeper had served her the plate, just before she dashed off to go to the shops. It was her cousins house, her cousins housekeeper, and most likely the vile slice of sausage was her cousins idea. She always stayed with her...
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FREE TO WANDER

FREE TO WANDER

“Thief! Guards, Guards!” The vendor pointed at the young woman as she meandered through the market stalls. Abrya took no note of the man's shouting. She was sure what ever thief was about would soon be caught. No, today she was in amazement. Last night she had received her full name, Abrya Moonsong. Today, was her first day to wander on her own. She had never been so excited in her life. Many did not get their first wander in a city. The caravan traveled across the lands going...
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Callisto

Callisto

“...forget the cafe latte, screw the raspberry iced tea, a Malibu and Coke for you, a Gin and Tonic for me...” Callie slowly opened one eye, reaching up to rub away the crusty rheum. That one eye, now free of the sleep crusties, tried to focus on her iPhone alarm. It took a few seconds. She squinted at it but then ducked her head back down, as she caught a flash of a large white object, aimed at her face. “Hey!” “Shut of that fraking music, will ya?” “Settle down, Karen. It's time to get up”
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Fiction: In a Quiet Ohio Town, Who Started the Fire, and Why?

25 September 2017 | 5:00 am NYT > Books

Celeste Ng’s “Little Fires Everywhere” witnesses the mysteries of arson, kinship and community in late-’90s suburban America....


Rugged coastline and hunky blokes: is Cornwall the UK's new literary capital?

25 September 2017 | 2:00 am Books | The Guardian

Following in the foaming wake of Poldark’s TV success, and picking up a tradition taking in Du Maurier and Woolf, a new wave of Cornish reading is risingWhere are most British novels set? Well, the smart money would be on London. But once you get out of the capital, I’d lay a bet on Cornwall being the landscape that inspires the biggest number of fictional backdrops.The rugged, dramatic coastline will have a lot to do with it, of course. Winston Graham’s Ross Poldark, recently...


Cornwall: the UK's new literary capital?

25 September 2017 | 2:00 am Books | The Guardian

Following in the foaming wake of Poldark’s TV success, and picking up a tradition taking in Du Maurier and Woolf, a new wave of Cornish reading is risingWhere are most British novels set? Well, the smart money would be on London. But once you get out of the capital, I’d lay a bet on Cornwall being the landscape that inspires the biggest number of fictional backdrops.The rugged, dramatic coastline will have a lot to do with it, of course. Winston Graham’s Ross Poldark, recently...


Michael Ondaatje opens archive to reveal his writing methods

25 September 2017 | 2:01 am Books | The Guardian

Author’s papers, acquired by the Harry Ransom Center in Texas, include a photograph that formed the basis of one of the scenes in The English Patient An image of a drunken Oxford party that Michael Ondaatje clipped from a magazine and stuck into a notebook would, years later, inspire a scene in The English Patient, according to the novelist’s archives, which have just been acquired by the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin.Ondaatje, in an interview with the...


The Sparsholt Affair by Alan Hollinghurst – the work of a master

25 September 2017 | 2:30 am Books | The Guardian

Spanning two generations of gay life, Hollinghurst’s tale of dreaming spires and secrets is his finest novel yetAlan Hollinghurst’s sixth novel, The Sparsholt Affair, opens in Oxford during the second world war and ends in London in 2012. As with its predecessor, The Stranger’s Child (2011), much of the action takes place offstage, in the interstices between chapters. The chapters themselves are spent watching as these events make their repercussions felt in the lives of...


The Real Story Behind Roald Dahl’s ‘Black Charlie’

24 September 2017 | 3:32 pm NYT > Books

The author’s early draft of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” featured a black protagonist who gets trapped inside a chocolate mold. Was it racial stereotyping, or something more complicated?...


Q. & A.: Tell Us 5 Things About Your Book: Maria Sharapova on ‘Unstoppable’

24 September 2017 | 5:00 pm NYT > Books

The tennis star discusses why she wrote her new memoir, the struggles her father faced during her childhood and more....


What Happened by Hillary Rodham Clinton – digested read

24 September 2017 | 12:00 pm Books | The Guardian

‘I take full responsibility for everything that went wrong apart from those things that were other people’s fault. And don’t forget the Russians’What happened? I wish I knew for certain. What I can say is that I absolutely gave it my best shot and that I couldn’t have had a wiser team around me. When I shed a tear as I waited in line at President Trump’s inauguration, it wasn’t for me. It was also for all the people in America who would have to live...


Talking to My Daughter About the Economy by Yanis Varoufakis review – provocative and challenging

24 September 2017 | 7:00 am Books | The Guardian

The celebrated Greek economist draws on ancient myth, modern culture and personal experience to explore the nature and significance of capitalismThe famed former Greek finance minister has an 11-year-old daughter, Xenia, in Australia. Knowing she will have learned about the indigenous inhabitants of that continent, he starts this paternal polemic on capitalism by twisting a familiar fact, asking why Aboriginal Australians didn’t invade Britain.This sets the tone for a provocative,...


Fresh Complaint by Jeffrey Eugenides review – men behaving badly

24 September 2017 | 5:00 am Books | The Guardian

Husbands and fathers harbour dark thoughts in the novelist’s witty collection of short stories whose characters prove hard to loveIn the perfectly paced, middle-aged, middle-class drama that completes Jeffrey Eugenides’s first collection of short stories, a famous physics professor “watches his life implode” after an ill-advised one-night stand with a high school student who has a trick up her sleeve. We’ve already been treated to a country music radio consultant...


Anecdote

Don't You Know Who I Am?
by Christina Surretsky from NJ
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My story starts when I followed the career of indie author Amanda Hocking who landed a publishing deal. I requested tickets when I heard she was going to be on Anderson Cooper’s daytime talk show. As part of the request, the form asked “how were you influenced by Amanda?” I wrote about how I was inspired to write by her success.

A few weeks later I got a call from the show asking if I'd like to be the “special surprise ‘super fan’ guest” for Amanda Hocking.

Um, YES!
The day of, I got the star treatment (hair/makeup) and did the requisite producer run-through to make sure I was coherent and concise. There was some stage direction: “Listen, Amanda is great. But she’s very laid back and low key, so you need to bring ALL the energy to this. ALL THE ENERGY! Be PASSIONATE! ENTHUSIASTIC! But be yourself.”
Even though this is the diametric opposite of myself, I agreed.
And there was this piece of additional direction: “When you get onstage HUG Amanda. Even if she doesn’t get up, YOU PULL HER UP! HUG her!”
I even practiced my hug.
Soon I was placed in the audience. Then they brought Amanda out. After a little chitchat between Anderson and Amanda, I was brought up. Given the look on her face, I realized she probably was hoping I wasn’t a stalker who would follow her back to her hotel. (I didn’t. She ditched me.)
As directed, I went up and I HUGGED Amanda Hocking. But, Amanda Hocking, being the professional that she is, was totally cool, in spite of not expecting my hug, my stalking, or me.
This event pushed me to finish my book. So thank you Amanda Hocking for being such an inspiration. If ever see you again, I promise I won’t hug you. Unless you want me to.




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Which Witch Are You?

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The Book In The Freezer

The Book In The Freezer

Clips from the FRIENDS episode dealing with the books The Shining and Little Women, yes Joey really does keep his book hidden in the freezer and from the amount of times I laughed watching this, it is no wonder Friends was such a big hit.


Dog Wants a Kitty

Dog Wants a Kitty

Dog Wants a Kitty by Pets Add Life This big, bad doggie wants a little, fluffy kitty and Pets Add Life do a great voice over or is it really the dog talking... Who knows but it is great fun to watch. We have a few funny videos of pets talking now, so do search our selection for the best of the best.


Pet Interviews - Guinea Pig

Pet Interviews - Guinea Pig

Pets Add Life: Pet Interviews - Guinea Pig. So what would a guinea pig say in an interview, well lets find out by watching this very funny video, I had tears of laughter watching it! Footage of Rory submitted by minipigsDOTcom


Pets Add Life: Wet Dog!

Pets Add Life: Wet Dog!

A very very wet and unhappy dog from Pets need a pal to talk to. Starring Oakley. Oakley has just had a bath and he is not happy, watch him tell his owner off, it is very funny!



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