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General Blog Posts

Editing Yourself: Over-writing and what to do about it

Pottery_Wheel

I have a confession to make: I’m a chronic over-writer. In fact, unless you are one of those very few people who do almost all your editing while you are writing the first draft, you do too. There isn’t anything wrong with over-writing. It’s a mistake to think that you can leave it as is.…

Truth in Fiction: Wealth is not an adequate plot device.

Let me offer you a common premise: ingenue meets twenty-something billionaire and, after a stormy romantic voyage, accessorized with luxury brand-name products and services, and pitted with weak-premised misunderstandings, missed opportunities, ecstatically successful sex – even when it’s entirely non-consensual – and totally groundless jealousies, ends in a happily ever after moment. Last week, I…

Surveillance and Selfies

We have a wired world that exhorts us to reveal ourselves. Of course, this didn’t start with the web. It was brewing since we said goodbye to our Victorian reserve. Early celebrity magazines like “Tattler” and “Hello” both served and punished those who featured in them; congratulating the rich and famous on their weddings, and…

Pork Satay With Peanut Dipping Sauce

Things on Sticks. Streetside satay bar in Yangon, Burma.

This is another one of those posts that should probably go on another site, but in the interests of not being one-dimensional, here’s my recipe and guide for Pork Satay with Peanut Dipping Sauce. You can download it in PDF, ePub or Mobi (Kindle) format. Right-click to save to your desktop. PDF version ePub version…

Make Better: Critical Writing Friends and Process

I am very fortunate to have two excellent supervisors for my PhD. My primary supervisor oversees my theoretical and critical work, my secondary supervisor acts in the spirit of a critical friend. She reads the work I’m producing for the creative part of the PhD, and gives me very good, very deep critiques. I thought…

Say it ain’t so: when reality doesn’t accord with our beliefs

I’ve spent a lot of this week collecting references for some papers I’d like to write. One attempts to challenge the very pervasive belief that being aroused by fiction sexually, emotionally, sentimentally or fearfully is somehow fundamentally negative – that it impairs our judgement completely and renders us quivering idiots (no, that’s not quite how…