Language Arts & Discipline

Build and refine your mastery of language with our selection of literary, grammatical, and linguistic resource books. In this varied library, you’ll find poetic memoirs and essays, guides for professional writers, and fascinating reads on the history of language. Indulge your passion for the written and spoken word with a Scribd subscription.

Build and refine your mastery of language with our selection of literary, grammatical, and linguistic resource books. In this varied library, you’ll find poetic memoirs and essays, guides for professional writers, and fascinating reads on the history of language. Indulge your passion for the written and spoken word with a Scribd subscription.

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  • Dear Memory: Letters on Writing, Silence, and Grief
    Dear Memory: Letters on Writing, Silence, and Grief
    Dear Memory: Letters on Writing, Silence, and Grief

    Ebook

    Dear Memory: Letters on Writing, Silence, and Grief

    byVictoria Chang

    A collection of literary letters and mementos on the art of remembering across generations. For poet Victoria Chang, memory “isn’t something that blooms, but something that bleeds internally.” It is willed, summoned, and dragged to the surface. The remembrances in this collection of letters are founded in the fragments of stories her mother shared reluctantly, and the silences of her father, who first would not and then could not share more. They are whittled and sculpted from an archive of family relics: a marriage license, a letter, a visa petition, a photograph. And, just as often, they are built on the questions that can no longer be answered. Dear Memory is not a transcription but a process of simultaneously shaping and being shaped, knowing that when a writer dips their pen into history, what emerges is poetry. In carefully crafted missives on trauma and loss, on being American and Chinese, Victoria Chang shows how grief can ignite a longing to know yourself. In letters to family, past teachers, and fellow poets, as the imagination, Dear Memory offers a model for what it looks like to find ourselves in our histories.

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • What About the Baby?: Some Thoughts on the Art of Fiction
    What About the Baby?: Some Thoughts on the Art of Fiction
    What About the Baby?: Some Thoughts on the Art of Fiction

    Audiobook

    What About the Baby?: Some Thoughts on the Art of Fiction

    byAlice McDermott

    A collection of essays, lectures, and observations on the art of writing fiction from Alice McDermott, winner of the National Book Award and unmatched "virtuoso of language and image" (Rebecca Steinitz, The Boston Globe) What About the Baby? Some Thoughts on the Art of Fiction gathers the bestselling novelist Alice McDermott’s pithiest wisdom about her chosen art, acquired over a lifetime as an acclaimed writer and teacher of writing. From technical advice (“check that your verbs aren’t burdened by unnecessary hads and woulds”) to setting the bar (“I expect the fiction I read to carry with it the conviction that it is written with no other incentive than that it must be written”), from the demands of readers (“they’d been given a story with a baby in it, and they damn well wanted that baby accounted for”) to the foibles of public life (“I’ve never subscribed to the notion that a film adaptation is the final imprimatur for a work of fiction, despite how often I’ve been told by encouraging friends and strangers, ‘Maybe they’ll make a movie of your novel,’ as if I’d been aiming for a screenplay all along but somehow missed the mark and wrote a novel by mistake”), McDermott muses trenchantly and delightfully about the craft of fiction. She also serves throughout as the artful conductor of a literary chorus, quoting generously from the work of other great writers (including Tolstoy, Shakespeare, Nabokov, Morrison, and Woolf ), beautifully joining her voice with theirs. These stories of lessons learned and books read, and of the terrors and the joys of what she calls “this mad pursuit,” form a rich and valuable sourcebook for readers and writers alike: a deeply charming meditation on the unique gift that is literature. A Macmillan Audio production from Farrar, Straus and Giroux

    Rating: 0 out of 5 stars
    0 ratings
  • FIC: Why Fanfiction is Taking Over the World
    FIC: Why Fanfiction is Taking Over the World
    FIC: Why Fanfiction is Taking Over the World

    Audiobook

    FIC: Why Fanfiction is Taking Over the World

    byAnne Jamison

    What is fanfiction, and what is it not? Why does fanfiction matter? And what makes it so important to the future of literature? Fic is a groundbreaking exploration of the history and culture of fan writing and what it means for the way we think about reading, writing, and authorship. It’s a story about literature, community, and technology—about what stories are being told, who’s telling them, how, and why. With provocative discussions from both professional and fan writers, on subjects from Star Trek to The X-Files and Buffy the Vampire Slayer to Harry Potter, Twilight, and beyond, Fic sheds light on the widely misunderstood world(s) of fanfiction—not only how fanfiction is transforming the literary landscape, but how it already has. Fic features a foreword by Lev Grossman (author of The Magicians) and interviews with Jonathan Lethem, Doug Wright, Eurydice (Vivien Dean), and Katie Forsythe/wordstrings.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Another Life: On Memory, Language, Love, and the Passage of Time
    Another Life: On Memory, Language, Love, and the Passage of Time
    Another Life: On Memory, Language, Love, and the Passage of Time

    Audiobook

    Another Life: On Memory, Language, Love, and the Passage of Time

    byTheodor Kallifatides

    A rewarding philosophical essay on memory, language, love, and the passage of time, from a Greek immigrant who became one of Sweden’s most highly respected writers “Nobody should write after the age of seventy-five,” a friend had said. At seventy-seven, struggling with the weight of writer’s block, Theodor Kallifatides makes the difficult decision to sell the Stockholm studio where he diligently worked for decades and retire. Unable to write, and yet unable to not write, he travels to his native Greece in the hope of rediscovering that lost fluidity of language. In this slim memoir, Kallifatides explores the interplay of meaningful living and meaningful work, and the timeless question of how to reconcile oneself to aging. But he also comments on worrying trends in contemporary Europe—from religious intolerance and prejudice against immigrants to housing crises and gentrification—and his sadness at the battered state of his beloved Greece. Kallifatides offers an eloquent, thought-provoking meditation on the writing life, and an author’s place in a changing world.  

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Wonderworks: The 25 Most Powerful Inventions in the History of Literature
    Wonderworks: The 25 Most Powerful Inventions in the History of Literature
    Wonderworks: The 25 Most Powerful Inventions in the History of Literature

    Audiobook

    Wonderworks: The 25 Most Powerful Inventions in the History of Literature

    byAngus Fletcher

    This “fascinating” (Malcolm Gladwell, New York Times bestselling author of Outliers) examination of literary inventions through the ages, from ancient Mesopotamia to Elena Ferrante, shows how writers have created technical breakthroughs—rivaling scientific inventions—and engineering enhancements to the human heart and mind. Literature is a technology like any other. And the writers we revere—from Homer, Shakespeare, Austen, and others—each made a unique technical breakthrough that can be viewed as both a narrative and neuroscientific advancement. Literature’s great invention was to address problems we could not solve: not how to start a fire or build a boat, but how to live and love; how to maintain courage in the face of death; how to account for the fact that we exist at all. Wonderworks reviews the blueprints for twenty-five of the most significant developments in the history of literature. These inventions can be scientifically shown to alleviate grief, trauma, loneliness, anxiety, numbness, depression, pessimism, and ennui, while sparking creativity, courage, love, empathy, hope, joy, and positive change. They can be found throughout literature—from ancient Chinese lyrics to Shakespeare’s plays, poetry to nursery rhymes and fairy tales, and crime novels to slave narratives. A “refreshing and remarkable” (Jay Parini, author of Borges and Me: An Encounter) exploration of the new literary field of story science, Wonderworks teaches you everything you wish you learned in your English class, and “contains many instances of critical insight....What’s most interesting about this compendium is its understanding of imaginative representation as a technology” (The New York Times).

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Homo Irrealis: Essays
    Homo Irrealis: Essays
    Homo Irrealis: Essays

    Audiobook

    Homo Irrealis: Essays

    byAndré Aciman

    This program includes an introduction read by the author. The New York Times–bestselling author of Find Me and Call Me by Your Name returns to the essay form with his collection of thoughts on time, the creative mind, and great lives and works. Irrealis moods are the set of verbal moods that indicate that something is not actually the case or a certain situation or action is not known to have happened . . . André Aciman returns to the essay form in Homo Irrealis to explore what the present tense means to artists who cannot grasp the here and now. Irrealis is not about the present, or the past, or the future, but about what might have been but never was—but could in theory still happen. From meditations on subway poetry and the temporal resonances of an empty Italian street, to considerations of the lives and work of Sigmund Freud, Constantine Cavafy, W. G. Sebald, John Sloan, Éric Rohmer, Marcel Proust, and Fernando Pessoa, and portraits of cities such as Alexandria and St. Petersburg, Homo Irrealis is a deep reflection of the imagination’s power to shape our memories under time’s seemingly intractable hold. A Macmillan Audio production from Farrar, Straus and Giroux

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Create: Tools from Seriously Talented People to Unleash Your Creative Life
    Create: Tools from Seriously Talented People to Unleash Your Creative Life
    Create: Tools from Seriously Talented People to Unleash Your Creative Life

    Audiobook

    Create: Tools from Seriously Talented People to Unleash Your Creative Life

    byMarc Silber

    Find Your Creative Artist Within Creative conversations from some of the world's top photographers, filmmakers, Grammy award winners, TED presenters, actors, CEOs and more! Time for a new mindset. Many of us think of creativity as something distant and incompatible with daily life—a skill that artists get to use, but not the rest of us. Maybe you feel like a land-locked surfer, yearning for exhilarating rides. Or maybe you live for the few hours a week when you can take photographs, paint, or write. It’s time for a new mindset. Create shows you how to rediscover the artist within you. Live a more creative life. People who make a living in the creative arts know that there is a cycle to unlocking the imagination. Visualize, know your tools, work your craft, refine, share. When you tap into this cycle, you’ll find ways to operate at your highest state in all aspects of life. Find your creative purpose. Overcoming the barriers to innovation is easier than you think. Marc Silber, best selling author, award-wining creative and educator, shows you how to avoid the traps of procrastination, overthinking, and self-doubt. The exercises in Create are specifically designed to help you find certainty and confidence in self-expression. Learn how to: Master the techniques of visualization Draw inspiration from the world around you Collaborate with people who can further your vision Share with others to spread the joy If you enjoyed motivational books like The Creative Habit: Learn It and Use It for Life, Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative, Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear, and Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way: 25th Anniversary Edition, you’ll love Create.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The 99% Invisible City: A Field Guide to the Hidden World of Everyday Design
    The 99% Invisible City: A Field Guide to the Hidden World of Everyday Design
    The 99% Invisible City: A Field Guide to the Hidden World of Everyday Design

    Ebook

    The 99% Invisible City: A Field Guide to the Hidden World of Everyday Design

    byRoman Mars

    A NEW YORK TIMES, WASHINGTON POST, USA TODAY, AND PUBLISHERS WEEKLY BESTSELLER “[A] diverse and enlightening book . . . The 99% Invisible City is altogether fresh and imaginative when it comes to thinking about urban spaces.” —The New York Times Book Review “Here is a field guide, a boon, a bible, for the urban curious. Your city’s secret anatomy laid bare—a hundred things you look at but don’t see, see but don’t know. Each entry is a compact, surprising story, a thought piece, an invitation to marvel. Together, they are almost transformative. To know why things are as they are adds a satisfying richness to daily existence. This book is terrific, just terrific.” —Mary Roach, New York Times bestselling author of Stiff, Grunt, and Gulp “The 99% Invisible City brings into view the fascinating but often unnoticed worlds we walk and drive through every day, and to read it is to feel newly alive and aware of your place in the world. This book made me laugh, and it made me cry, and it reminded me to always read the plaque.” —John Green, New York Times bestselling author of The Fault in Our Stars and Turtles All The Way Down A beautifully designed guidebook to the unnoticed yet essential elements of our cities, from the creators of the wildly popular 99% Invisible podcast  Have you ever wondered what those bright, squiggly graffiti marks on the sidewalk mean? Or stopped to consider why you don't see metal fire escapes on new buildings? Or pondered the story behind those dancing inflatable figures in car dealerships? 99% Invisible is a big-ideas podcast about small-seeming things, revealing stories baked into the buildings we inhabit, the streets we drive, and the sidewalks we traverse. The show celebrates design and architecture in all of its functional glory and accidental absurdity, with intriguing tales of both designers and the people impacted by their designs. Now, in The 99% Invisible City: A Field Guide to Hidden World of Everyday Design, host Roman Mars and coauthor Kurt Kohlstedt zoom in on the various elements that make our cities work, exploring the origins and other fascinating stories behind everything from power grids and fire escapes to drinking fountains and street signs. With deeply researched entries and beautiful line drawings throughout, The 99% Invisible City will captivate devoted fans of the show and anyone curious about design, urban environments, and the unsung marvels of the world around them.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The Writer's Library: The Authors You Love on the Books That Changed Their Lives
    The Writer's Library: The Authors You Love on the Books That Changed Their Lives
    The Writer's Library: The Authors You Love on the Books That Changed Their Lives

    Audiobook

    The Writer's Library: The Authors You Love on the Books That Changed Their Lives

    byNancy Pearl

    Performed by Nancy Pearl, Jeff Schwager and a multi-cast that includes book contributors Luis Alberto Urrea, Siri Hustvedt, Laurie Frankel, Vendela Vida, and Richard Ford. The Writer’s Library audiobook also features real conversations with Michael Chabon, Ayelet Waldman, and Laila Lalami. With a Foreword by Susan Orlean, twenty-three of today's living literary legends, including Donna Tartt, Viet Thanh Nguyen, Andrew Sean Greer, Laila Lalami, and Michael Chabon, reveal the books that made them think, brought them joy, and changed their lives in this intimate, moving, and insightful collection from "American's Librarian" Nancy Pearl and noted playwright Jeff Schwager that celebrates the power of literature and reading to connect us all. Before Jennifer Egan, Louise Erdrich, Luis Alberto Urrea, and Jonathan Lethem became revered authors, they were readers. In this ebullient book, America’s favorite librarian Nancy Pearl and noted-playwright Jeff Schwager interview a diverse range of America's most notable and influential writers about the books that shaped them and inspired them to leave their own literary mark.  The Writer’s Library is a revelatory exploration of the studies, libraries, and bookstores of today’s favorite authors—the creative artists whose imagination and sublime talent make America's literary scene the wonderful, dynamic world it is. A love letter to books and a celebration of wordsmiths, The Writer’s Library is a treasure for anyone who has been moved by the written word.  The authors in The Writer’s Library are: Russell Banks TC Boyle Michael Chabon Susan Choi Jennifer Egan Dave Eggers Louise Erdrich Richard Ford Laurie Frankel Andrew Sean Greer Jane Hirshfield Siri Hustvedt Charles Johnson Laila Lalami Jonathan Lethem Donna Tartt Madeline Miller Viet Thanh Nguyen Luis Alberto Urrea Vendela Vida Ayelet Waldman Maaza Mengiste Amor Towles

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • The Socrates Express: In Search of Life Lessons from Dead Philosophers
    The Socrates Express: In Search of Life Lessons from Dead Philosophers
    The Socrates Express: In Search of Life Lessons from Dead Philosophers

    Audiobook

    The Socrates Express: In Search of Life Lessons from Dead Philosophers

    byEric Weiner

    The New York Times bestselling author of The Geography of Bliss embarks on a rollicking intellectual journey, following in the footsteps of history’s greatest thinkers and showing us how each—from Epicurus to Gandhi, Thoreau to Beauvoir—offers practical and spiritual lessons for today’s unsettled times. We turn to philosophy for the same reasons we travel: to see the world from a dif­ferent perspective, to unearth hidden beauty, and to find new ways of being. We want to learn how to embrace wonder. Face regrets. Sustain hope. Eric Weiner combines his twin passions for philosophy and travel in a globe-trotting pil­grimage that uncovers surprising life lessons from great thinkers around the world, from Rousseau to Nietzsche, Confucius to Simone Weil. Traveling by train (the most thoughtful mode of transport), he journeys thousands of miles, making stops in Athens, Delhi, Wyoming, Coney Island, Frankfurt, and points in between to recon­nect with philosophy’s original purpose: teaching us how to lead wiser, more meaningful lives. From Socrates and ancient Athens to Beauvoir and 20th-century Paris, Weiner’s chosen philosophers and places provide important practical and spiritual lessons as we navigate today’s chaotic times. In a “delightful” odyssey that “will take you places intellectually and humorously” (San Francisco Book Review), Weiner invites us to voyage alongside him on his life-changing pursuit of wisdom and discovery as he attempts to find answers to our most vital questions. The Socrates Express is “full of valuable lessons…a fun, sharp book that draws readers in with its apparent simplicity and bubble-gum philosophy approach and gradually pulls them in deeper and deeper” (NPR).

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Chasing Chopin: A Musical Journey Across Three Centuries, Four Countries, and a Half-Dozen Revolutions
    Chasing Chopin: A Musical Journey Across Three Centuries, Four Countries, and a Half-Dozen Revolutions
    Chasing Chopin: A Musical Journey Across Three Centuries, Four Countries, and a Half-Dozen Revolutions

    Audiobook

    Chasing Chopin: A Musical Journey Across Three Centuries, Four Countries, and a Half-Dozen Revolutions

    byAnnik LaFarge

    A modern take on a classical icon: this “luminous book” (Susan Orlean, New York Times bestselling author of The Library Book) tells the story of when, where, and how Chopin composed his most famous work, uncovering many surprises along the way and showing how his innovative music still animates and thrives in our culture centuries later. In this widely-praised book, Annik LaFarge presents a very different Frédéric Chopin from the melancholy, sickly, Romantic figure that has predominated for so long. The artist she discovered is, instead, a purely independent—and endlessly relevant—spirit: an innovator who created a new musical language; an autodidact who became a spiritually generous, trailblazing teacher; a stalwart patriot during a time of revolution, pandemic, and exile. One of America’s foremost pianists, Jeremy Denk, wrote in The New York Times: “It is almost impossible for me to imagine a world in which [Chopin’s “Funeral March”] is both fresh and tragic, where its death is real. LaFarge’s charming and loving new book attempts to recover this world…This book took me into many unexpected corners…For a book about death, it’s bursting with life and lively research.” In this “entertaining dual music history and memoir” (Publishers Weekly), a “seamless blend of the musical and literary verve” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review) LaFarge “brilliantly traces the footsteps of Chopin’s life” (Scott Yoo, host of PBS Now Hear This) during the three years, 1837–1840, when he composed the now-iconic Funeral March, using its composition story to illuminate the key themes of Chopin’s life. As part of her research into Chopin’s world, then and now, LaFarge visited piano makers, monuments, churches, and archives; she talked to scholars, jazz musicians, video game makers, music teachers, theater directors, and of course dozens of pianists. She has given us, says pianist, author, and New York Times columnist Michael Kimmelman, “a tour-de-force and journey of the soul.” It is an engrossing, “impeccably researched” (Library Journal) work of musical discovery and an artful portrayal of a man whose work and life continue to inspire artists and cultural innovators in astonishing ways. An acclaimed companion website, WhyChopin, presents links to each piece of music mentioned in the book, organized by chapter, along with photos, resources, and more.

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • The Death of the Artist: How Creators Are Struggling to Survive in the Age of Billionaires and Big Tech
    The Death of the Artist: How Creators Are Struggling to Survive in the Age of Billionaires and Big Tech
    The Death of the Artist: How Creators Are Struggling to Survive in the Age of Billionaires and Big Tech

    Audiobook

    The Death of the Artist: How Creators Are Struggling to Survive in the Age of Billionaires and Big Tech

    byWilliam Deresiewicz

    A deeply researched warning about how the digital economy threatens artists' lives and work—the music, writing, and visual art that sustain our souls and societies—from an award-winning essayist and critic There are two stories you hear about earning a living as an artist in the digital age. One comes from Silicon Valley. There's never been a better time to be an artist, it goes. If you've got a laptop, you've got a recording studio. If you've got an iPhone, you've got a movie camera. And if production is cheap, distribution is free: it's called the Internet. Everyone's an artist; just tap your creativity and put your stuff out there. The other comes from artists themselves. Sure, it goes, you can put your stuff out there, but who's going to pay you for it? Everyone is not an artist. Making art takes years of dedication, and that requires a means of support. If things don't change, a lot of art will cease to be sustainable. So which account is true? Since people are still making a living as artists today, how are they managing to do it? William Deresiewicz, a leading critic of the arts and of contemporary culture, set out to answer those questions. Based on interviews with artists of all kinds, The Death of the Artist argues that we are in the midst of an epochal transformation. If artists were artisans in the Renaissance, bohemians in the nineteenth century, and professionals in the twentieth, a new paradigm is emerging in the digital age, one that is changing our fundamental ideas about the nature of art and the role of the artist in society. A Macmillan Audio production from Henry Holt and Company

    Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
    3/5
  • Austen Years: A Memoir in Five Novels
    Austen Years: A Memoir in Five Novels
    Austen Years: A Memoir in Five Novels

    Audiobook

    Austen Years: A Memoir in Five Novels

    byRachel Cohen

    "Narrator Justine Eyre meets all the challenges of author Rachel Cohen's unique memoir, which recounts her deep reading of Jane Austen's novels...Listeners do not need to be Austen aficionados to relate to this well-told personal journey." -- AudioFile Magazine This program includes a letter read by the author. An astonishingly nuanced reading of Jane Austen that yields a rare understanding of how to live. "About seven years ago, not too long before our daughter was born, and a year before my father died, Jane Austen became my only author." In the turbulent period around the birth of her first child and the death of her father, Rachel Cohen turned to Jane Austen to make sense of her new reality. For Cohen, simultaneously grief-stricken and buoyed by the birth of her daughter, reading Austen became her refuge and her ballast. She was able to reckon with difficult questions about mourning, memorializing, living in a household, paying attention to the world, reading, writing, and imagining through Austen’s novels. Austen Years is a deeply felt and sensitive examination of a writer’s relationship to reading, and to her own family, winding together memoir, criticism, and biographical and historical material about Austen herself. And like the sequence of Austen’s novels, the scope of Austen Years widens successively, with each chapter following one of Austen's novels. We begin with Cohen in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where she raises her small children and contemplates her father’s last letter, a moment paired with the grief of Sense and Sensibility and the social bonds of Pride and Prejudice. Later, moving with her family to Chicago, Cohen grapples with her growing children, teaching, and her father’s legacy, all refracted through the denser, more complex Mansfield Park and Emma. With unusual depth and fresh insight into Austen’s life and literature, and guided by Austen’s mournful and hopeful final novel, Persuasion, Rachel Cohen’s Austen Years is a rare memoir of mourning and transcendence, a love letter to a literary master, and a powerful consideration of the odd process that merges our interior experiences with the world at large. A Macmillan Audio production from Farrar, Straus and Giroux "An absolutely fascinating book: I will never read Austen the same way again." —Helen Macdonald, author of H is for Hawk "Exhilarating and beautiful." --Claire Messud, author of The Burning Girl

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • At the Center of All Beauty: Solitude and the Creative Life
    At the Center of All Beauty: Solitude and the Creative Life
    At the Center of All Beauty: Solitude and the Creative Life

    Audiobook

    At the Center of All Beauty: Solitude and the Creative Life

    byFenton Johnson

    A profound meditation on accepting and celebrating one's solitude. Solitude is the inspirational core for many writers, artists, and thinkers. Alone with our thoughts, we can make discoveries that matter not only to us but to others. To be solitary is not only to draw sustenance from being alone, but to know that our ultimate responsibility is not only to our partner or our own offspring, but to a larger community. Fenton Johnson's lyrical prose and searching sensibility explores what it means to choose to be solitary and celebrates the notion that solitude is a legitimate and dignified calling. He delves into the lives and works of nearly a dozen iconic "solitaries" he considers his kindred spirits, from Thoreau at Walden Pond and Emily Dickinson in Amherst, to Bill Cunningham photographing the streets of New York, from Cezanne (married, but solitary nonetheless) painting Mt. St. Victoire over and over again, to the fiercely self-protective Zora Neale Hurston. Each character portrait is full of intense detail, the bright wakes they've left behind illuminating Fenton Johnson's own journey from his childhood in the backwoods of Kentucky to his travels alone throughout the world and the people he has lost and found along the way.

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • The Poets & Writers Complete Guide to Being a Writer: Everything You Need to Know About Craft, Inspiration, Agents, Editors, Publishing, and the Business of Building a Sustainable Writing Career
    The Poets & Writers Complete Guide to Being a Writer: Everything You Need to Know About Craft, Inspiration, Agents, Editors, Publishing, and the Business of Building a Sustainable Writing Career
    The Poets & Writers Complete Guide to Being a Writer: Everything You Need to Know About Craft, Inspiration, Agents, Editors, Publishing, and the Business of Building a Sustainable Writing Career

    Ebook

    The Poets & Writers Complete Guide to Being a Writer: Everything You Need to Know About Craft, Inspiration, Agents, Editors, Publishing, and the Business of Building a Sustainable Writing Career

    byKevin Larimer

    The definitive source of information, insight, and advice for creative writers, from the nation’s largest and most trusted organization for writers, Poets & Writers. For half a century, writers at every stage of their careers have turned to the literary nonprofit organization Poets & Writers and its award-winning magazine for resources to foster their professional development, from writing prompts and tips on technique to informative interviews with published authors, literary agents, and editors. But never before has Poets & Writers marshaled its fifty years’ worth of knowledge to create an authoritative guide for writers that answers every imaginable question about craft and career—until now. Here is the writing bible for authors of all genres and forms, covering topics such as how to: -Harness your imagination and jump-start your creativity -Develop your work from initial idea to final draft -Find a supportive and inspiring writing community to sustain your career -Find the best MFA program for you -Publish your work in literary magazines and develop a platform -Research writing contests and other opportunities to support your writing life -Decide between traditional publishing and self-publishing -Find the right literary agent -Anticipate what agents look for in queries and proposals -Work successfully with an editor and your publishing team -Market yourself and your work in a digital world -Approach financial planning and taxes as a writer -And much more Written by Kevin Larimer and Mary Gannon, the two most recent editors of Poets & Writers Magazine, this book brings an unrivaled understanding of the areas in which writers seek guidance and support. Filled with insider information like sample query letters, pitch letters, lists of resources, and worksheets for calculating freelance rates, tracking submissions, and managing your taxes, the guide does more than demystify the writing life—it also provides an array of powerful tools for building a sustainable career as a writer. In addition to the wealth of insights into creativity, publishing, and promotion are first-person essays from bestselling authors, including George Saunders, Christina Baker Kline, and Ocean Vuong, as well as reading lists from award-winning writers such as Anthony Doerr, Cheryl Strayed, and Natalie Diaz. Here, at last, is the ultimate comprehensive resource that belongs on every writer’s desk.

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • JR: The Chronicles of New York City
    JR: The Chronicles of New York City
    JR: The Chronicles of New York City

    Ebook

    JR: The Chronicles of New York City

    byJR

    TED Prize winner, Oscar nominee, and one of Time's 100 most influential people of 2018, JR is a contemporary art superstar. In 2018, over one thousand New Yorkers posed for the camera and told their stories at JR's mobile photo studio and JR compiled their portraits into an astounding photographic mural—a portrait of the city—for the Brooklyn Museum. This book features both the final mural and every individual photo, as well as a selection of compelling stories and a behind-the-scenes look at how this incredible work was made. • This art piece captures the essence of an iconic city in words and images • Includes a removable poster that showcases the entire mural • Features a foreword by Darren Walker and an artist's statement • Beautiful on the coffee table or in a photo book collection Fans of Humans of New York, Jason Polan's Every Person in New York, and Banksy's Wall and Piece will love this book. This book is perfect for: • Fans of the artist JR • Anyone who loves New York City • Photographers, both established and aspiring • Lovers of contemporary art, black and white photography, and site-specific art projects

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Bowie's Bookshelf: The Hundred Books that Changed David Bowie's Life
    Bowie's Bookshelf: The Hundred Books that Changed David Bowie's Life
    Bowie's Bookshelf: The Hundred Books that Changed David Bowie's Life

    Ebook

    Bowie's Bookshelf: The Hundred Books that Changed David Bowie's Life

    byJohn O'Connell

    Named one of Entertainment Weekly’s 12 biggest music memoirs this fall. “An artful and wildly enthralling path for Bowie fans in particular and book lovers in general.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review) “The only art I’ll ever study is stuff that I can steal from.” ―David Bowie Three years before David Bowie died, he shared a list of 100 books that changed his life. His choices span fiction and nonfiction, literary and irreverent, and include timeless classics alongside eyebrow-raising obscurities. In 100 short essays, music journalist John O’Connell studies each book on Bowie’s list and contextualizes it in the artist’s life and work. How did the power imbued in a single suit of armor in The Iliad impact a man who loved costumes, shifting identity, and the siren song of the alter-ego? How did The Gnostic Gospels inform Bowie’s own hazy personal cosmology? How did the poems of T.S. Eliot and Frank O’Hara, the fiction of Vladimir Nabokov and Anthony Burgess, the comics of The Beano and The Viz, and the groundbreaking politics of James Baldwin influence Bowie’s lyrics, his sound, his artistic outlook? How did the 100 books on this list influence one of the most influential artists of a generation? Heartfelt, analytical, and totally original, Bowie’s Bookshelf is one part epic reading guide and one part biography of a music legend.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Keep It Moving: Lessons for the Rest of Your Life
    Keep It Moving: Lessons for the Rest of Your Life
    Keep It Moving: Lessons for the Rest of Your Life

    Audiobook

    Keep It Moving: Lessons for the Rest of Your Life

    byTwyla Tharp

    One of the world’s leading artists — a living legend — and best-selling author of The Creative Habit shares her secrets for harnessing vitality and finding purpose as you age. From insight to action, Keep It Moving is a guide for expanding one’s possibilities over the course of a lifetime. At 77, Twyla Tharp is revered not only for the dances she makes — but for her astounding regime of exercise and nonstop engagement. She is famed for religiously hitting the gym each morning at daybreak and utilizing that energy to propel her breakneck schedule as a teacher, writer, creator, and lecturer. This audiobook grew out of the question she was asked most frequently: “How do you keep working?” In Twyla’s own words: “This book is a collection of what I’ve learned in the past fifty-five years: from the moment I committed to a life in dance up until today...it identifies a ‘disease’ and offers a cure. That disease, simply put, is our fear of time’s passing and the resulting aging process. The remedy? This book in your hands.” Keep It Moving is a series of no-nonsense mediations on how to live with purpose as time passes. From the details of how she stays motivated to the stages of her evolving fitness routine, Tharp models how fulfillment depends not on fortune — but on attitude, possible for anyone willing to try and keep trying. Culling anecdotes from Twyla’s life and the lives of other luminaries, each chapter is accompanied by a small exercise that will help anyone develop a more hopeful and energetic approach to the everyday. Twyla will tell you what the beauty-fitness-wellness industry won’t: Chasing youth is a losing proposition. Instead, Keep It Moving focuses you on what’s here and where you’re going — the audiobook for anyone who wishes to maintain their prime for life.

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Embrace Your Weird: Face Your Fears and Unleash Creativity
    Embrace Your Weird: Face Your Fears and Unleash Creativity
    Embrace Your Weird: Face Your Fears and Unleash Creativity

    Audiobook

    Embrace Your Weird: Face Your Fears and Unleash Creativity

    byFelicia Day

    In Embrace Your Weird, New York Times best-selling author, producer, actress, TV writer, and award-winning web series creator Felicia Day takes you on a journey to find, rekindle, or expand your creative passions. Including Felicia’s personal stories and hard-won wisdom, Embrace Your Weird offers: Entertaining and revelatory exercises that empower you to be fearless, so you can rediscover the things that bring you joy, and crack your imagination wide open Unique techniques to vanquish enemies of creativity like: anxiety, fear, procrastination, perfectionism, criticism, and jealousy Tips to cultivate a creative community Space to explore and get your neurons firing Whether you enjoy writing, baking, painting, podcasting, playing music, or have yet to uncover your favorite creative outlet, Embrace Your Weird will help you unlock the power of self-expression. Get motivated. Get creative. Get weird.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Semicolon: The Past, Present, and Future of a Misunderstood Mark
    Semicolon: The Past, Present, and Future of a Misunderstood Mark
    Semicolon: The Past, Present, and Future of a Misunderstood Mark

    Audiobook

    Semicolon: The Past, Present, and Future of a Misunderstood Mark

    byCecelia Watson

    A pause-resisting, existential romp through the life and times of the world’s most polarizing punctuation mark. The semicolon. Stephen King, Hemingway, Vonnegut, and Orwell detest it. Herman Melville, Henry James, and Rebecca Solnit love it. But why? When is it effective? Have we been misusing it? Should we even care? In Semicolon, Cecelia Watson charts the rise and fall of this infamous punctuation mark, which for years was the trendiest one in the world of letters. But in the 19th century, as grammar books became all the rage, the rules of how we use language became both stricter and more confusing, with the semicolon a prime victim. Taking us on a breezy journey through a range of examples — from Milton’s manuscripts to Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “Letters from Birmingham Jail” to Raymond Chandler’s The Big Sleep — Watson reveals how traditional grammar rules make us less successful at communicating with each other than we’d think. Even the most die-hard grammar fanatics would be better served by tossing the rule books and learning a better way to engage with language. Through her rollicking biography of the semicolon, Watson writes a guide to grammar that explains why we don’t need guides at all and refocuses our attention on the deepest, most primary value of language: true communication.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Greek to Me: Adventures of the Comma Queen
    Greek to Me: Adventures of the Comma Queen
    Greek to Me: Adventures of the Comma Queen

    Audiobook

    Greek to Me: Adventures of the Comma Queen

    byMary Norris

    Mary Norris has spent more than three decades in The New Yorker's copy department, maintaining its celebrated high standards. Now she brings her vast experience, good cheer, and finely sharpened pencils to help the rest of us in a boisterous language book as full of life as it is of practical advice. Greek to Me features Norris's laugh-out-loud descriptions of some of the most common and vexing problems in spelling, punctuation, and usage—comma faults, danglers, "who" vs. "whom," "that" vs. "which," compound words, gender-neutral language—and her clear explanations of how to handle them. Down-to-earth and always open-minded, she draws on examples from Charles Dickens, Emily Dickinson, Henry James, and the Lord's Prayer, as well as from The Honeymooners, The Simpsons, David Foster Wallace, and Gillian Flynn. She takes us to see a copy of Noah Webster's groundbreaking Blue-Back Speller, on a quest to find out who put the hyphen in Moby-Dick, on a pilgrimage to the world's only pencil-sharpener museum, and inside the hallowed halls of The New Yorker and her work with such celebrated writers as Pauline Kael, Philip Roth, and George Saunders. Readers—and writers—will find in Norris neither a scold nor a softie but a wise and witty new friend in love with language and alive to the glories of its use in America, even in the age of autocorrect and spell-check. As Norris writes, "The dictionary is a wonderful thing, but you can't let it push you around."

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • So Much Longing in So Little Space: The Art of Edvard Munch
    So Much Longing in So Little Space: The Art of Edvard Munch
    So Much Longing in So Little Space: The Art of Edvard Munch

    Audiobook

    So Much Longing in So Little Space: The Art of Edvard Munch

    byKarl Ove Knausgaard

    A brilliant and personal examination by sensational and bestselling author Karl Ove Knausgaard of his Norwegian compatriot Edvard Munch, the famed artist best known for his iconic painting The Scream In So Much Longing in So Little Space, Karl Ove Knausgaard sets out to understand the enduring and awesome power of Edvard Munch's work by training his gaze on the landscapes that inspired Munch and speaking firsthand with other contemporary artists, including Anselm Kiefer, for whom Munch's legacy looms large. Bringing together art history, biography, and memoir, Knausgaard tells a passionate, freewheeling, and pensive story about not just one of history's most significant painters, but the very meaning of choosing the artist's life, as he himself has done. This utterly original and ardent work of criticism will delight and educate both experts and novices of literature and the visual arts alike.

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • The Human Condition: Second Edition
    The Human Condition: Second Edition
    The Human Condition: Second Edition

    Ebook

    The Human Condition: Second Edition

    byHannah Arendt

    The past year has seen a resurgence of interest in the political thinker Hannah Arendt, “the theorist of beginnings,” whose work probes the logics underlying unexpected transformations—from totalitarianism to revolution. A work of striking originality, The Human Condition is in many respects more relevant now than when it first appeared in 1958. In her study of the state of modern humanity, Hannah Arendt considers humankind from the perspective of the actions of which it is capable. The problems Arendt identified then—diminishing human agency and political freedom, the paradox that as human powers increase through technological and humanistic inquiry, we are less equipped to control the consequences of our actions—continue to confront us today. This new edition, published to coincide with the sixtieth anniversary of its original publication, contains Margaret Canovan’s 1998 introduction and a new foreword by Danielle Allen. A classic in political and social theory, The Human Condition is a work that has proved both timeless and perpetually timely.  

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain
    Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain
    Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain

    Ebook

    Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain

    byMaryanne Wolf

    “Wolf restores our awe of the human brain—its adaptability, its creativity, and its ability to connect with other minds through a procession of silly squiggles.” — San Francisco Chronicle How do people learn to read and write—and how has the development of these skills transformed the brain and the world itself ? Neuropsychologist and child development expert Maryann Wolf answers these questions in this ambitious and provocative book that chronicles the remarkable journey of written language not only throughout our evolution but also over the course of a single child’s life, showing why a growing percentage have difficulty mastering these abilities. With fascinating down-to-earth examples and lively personal anecdotes, Wolf asserts that the brain that examined the tiny clay tablets of the Sumerians is a very different brain from the one that is immersed in today’s technology-driven literacy, in which visual images on the screen are paving the way for a reduced need for written language—with potentially profound consequences for our future.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
  • Mad, Bad, Dangerous to Know: The Fathers of Wilde, Yeats and Joyce
    Mad, Bad, Dangerous to Know: The Fathers of Wilde, Yeats and Joyce
    Mad, Bad, Dangerous to Know: The Fathers of Wilde, Yeats and Joyce

    Audiobook

    Mad, Bad, Dangerous to Know: The Fathers of Wilde, Yeats and Joyce

    byFindaway

    From Colm Tóibín, the formidable award-winning author of The Master and Brooklyn, an illuminating, intimate study of Irish culture, history, and literature told through the lives and work of three men — William Wilde, John Butler Yeats, and John Stanislaus Joyce — and the complicated, influential relationships they had with their complicated sons. Colm Tóibín begins his incisive, revelatory Mad, Bad, Dangerous to Know with a walk through the Dublin streets where he went to university — a wide-eyed boy from the country — and where three Irish literary giants also came of age. Oscar Wilde, writing about his relationship with his father, William Wilde, stated: “Whenever there is hatred between two people there is bond or brotherhood of some kind...you loathed each other not because you were so different but because you were so alike.” W.B. Yeats wrote of his father, John Butler Yeats, a painter: “It is this infirmity of will which has prevented him from finishing his pictures. The qualities I think necessary to success in art or life seemed to him egotism.” John Stanislaus Joyce, James’ father, was perhaps the most quintessentially Irish, widely loved, garrulous, a singer, and a drinker with a volatile temper, who drove his son from Ireland. Elegant, profound, and riveting, Mad, Bad, Dangerous to Know illuminates not only the complex relationships between three of the greatest writers in the English language and their fathers, but also illustrates the surprising ways these men surface in their work. Through these stories of fathers and sons, Tóibín recounts the resistance to English cultural domination, the birth of modern Irish cultural identity, and the extraordinary contributions of these complex and masterful authors.

    Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    5/5
  • What to Read and Why
    What to Read and Why
    What to Read and Why

    Audiobook

    What to Read and Why

    byFrancine Prose

    In this brilliant collection, the follow-up to her New York Times bestseller Reading Like a Writer, the distinguished novelist, literary critic, and essayist celebrates the pleasures of reading and pays homage to the works and writers she admires above all others, from Jane Austen and Charles Dickens to Jennifer Egan and Roberto Bolaño. In an age defined by hyper-connectivity and constant stimulation, Francine Prose makes a compelling case for the solitary act of reading and the great enjoyment it brings. Inspiring and illuminating, What to Read and Why includes selections culled from Prose's previous essays, reviews, and introductions, combined with new, never-before-published pieces that focus on her favorite works of fiction and nonfiction, on works by masters of the short story, and even on books by photographers like Diane Arbus. Prose considers why the works of literary masters such as Mary Shelley, Charles Dickens, George Eliot, and Jane Austen have endured, and shares intriguing insights about modern authors whose words stimulate our minds and enlarge our lives, including Roberto Bolaño, Karl Ove Knausgaard, Jennifer Egan, and Mohsin Hamid. Prose implores us to read Mavis Gallant for her marvelously rich and compact sentences, and her meticulously rendered characters who reveal our flawed and complex human nature; Edward St. Aubyn for his elegance and sophisticated humor; and Mark Strand for his gift for depicting unlikely transformations. Here, too, are original pieces in which Prose explores the craft of writing: "On Clarity" and "What Makes a Short Story." Written with her sharp critical analysis, wit, and enthusiasm, What to Read and Why is a celebration of literature that will give readers a new appreciation for the power and beauty of the written word.

    Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    4/5
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