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Writing & Editing News

  • in Writing & Editing Resources

    The Case for the Long-Contended Serial Comma

    Few times in the history of the written word has such a small character caused so much contention as the serial comma. Also known as the Oxford comma (after the dictionary by the same name) and the Harvard comma (after the school, of course), this punctuation mark divides more than words. It has the uncanny...
  • in Uncategorized

    Why Some Writers Prefer Fictional, or Disguised Real Settings, and Others Don’t

    Character, plot, and place are intertwined elements good writers use artfully. Sometimes the place is fictional (for example, Kent Haruf’s Holt, Colorado), or real (Naples, the backdrop of a quartet of Elena Ferrante’s novels), or disguised (Oxford disguised as Christminster by Thomas Hardy). The Importance of the Setting The setting imbues the sto...
  • in Writing & Editing Resources

    Why Writers Use Small Town Settings So Often

    For writers who grew up or lived in small towns, writing about them comes easily because that life is so familiar to them. Unlike large cities with many service providers, small towns demand more of local residents, who need to become handy at doing things because the service is either not nearby or not easily...
  • in Writing & Editing Resources

    Elements of Compelling Characters and Learning How to Create Them

    Compelling characters grab a reader’s attention and pull the reader into the story. In the best fiction, a reader becomes an interested observer, or at least feels as if he or she is part of the plot. How do writers create characters? And, how do writers create characters who are so interesting that readers care...
  • in Writing & Editing Resources

    The Mystery of Elena Ferrante

    In 2016, Claudio Gatti, an Italian journalist, conducted an investigation and proclaimed the identity of the author who chose to write under the pseudonym Elena Ferrante. Gatti unmasked his quarry in his blog article aptly titled, “Elena Ferrante: An Answer?” published in The New York Review of Books. Gatti’s evidence appeared to be believable enou...


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