Sunday, November 19, 2017

Two Sides of the Same Coin

December 7, 2011 by Jane Ross  
Filed under Blog, Writing Practice

I’ve been watching with growing dismay as the headlines about the euro crisis grow steadily more dire. The economics blogs I follow are predicting years of stagnation in Europe as a best case scenario for the resolution of the crisis. Their worst case scenarios include widespread economic depression and misery, blood in the streets, and [...]

Déjà Vu: Banana Republic Edition

August 1, 2011 by Jane Ross  
Filed under Blog, Lifewriting, Writing Practice

The last time I lived here in Brazil (as opposed to just visiting for a couple of weeks), the country was in the middle of a slow-motion train wreck. This was 1991. Incompetent leadership and corruption had caused inflation to escalate from around 40% per annum in the early 1980s to 40% a MONTH by [...]

Upcoming Writing Prompts Book

July 26, 2011 by Jane Ross  
Filed under Blog, Books, Recent Projects

Writing prompts are the hooks we hang our story on as we search our memories for the events, emotions and relationships that make up our past.

A good writing prompt evokes our past by activating memories, first of smells, sounds, sights, and emotions. Once those memories start to stir in our consciousness, the prompt should guide [...]

I Said, You Said

July 26, 2011 by Jane Ross  
Filed under Blog, Writing Practice

In her research for her new book, Leila Levinson was surprised how the veterans she interviewed often switched to using the second person “you” as they talked of their experiences….

I’ve been reading Gated Grief by fellow Austinite, university English professor and friend Leila Levinson. Ultimately it’s a warmly reassuring read, even as it’s [...]

Cover Design Basics

July 24, 2011 by Jane Ross  
Filed under Blog, Publishing, Self publishing

Rule 1 for self-published book covers: They shouldn’t look self-published! What are some of the elements of a book’s cover design that could give it away?
Take a look at the book covers for two recent books of lifewriting. Both books are listed on print-on-demand service Lulu.com. 920 O’Farrell Street is published through a [...]

Not What You Planned

July 21, 2011 by Jane Ross  
Filed under Blog, Writing Practice

There’s an urgency to your writing, knowing friends are anxious to read your disaster reports. It’s not what you planned, but you’re writing…

You have sabbatical year ahead of you with ample time for writing. You’ve found the perfect place to stay on a quiet street, with a writing table near an upper-story window [...]

A Jewish Girlhood in Berlin

In the faded inky German handwriting in a 1940s school notebook, the editors of this memoir discovered a gem just waiting to be released from its dusty confines. This translation of the memoir of  Jenny Barth Bornstein tells of her childhood growing up in Berlin in the 1860s and 70s at the height of the [...]

On the Meaning of Home, an Interview with Barbara Gates

September 12, 2010 by Jane Ross  
Filed under Blog, Writing Practice

My hometown of Christchurch, New Zealand, has just experienced a massive earthquake. Though no lives were lost, many thousands of homes were seriously damaged, hundreds to the point of being likely teardowns.
Reading the news about the devastation and talking to family in New Zealand, I remembered my conversation with Buddhist writer Barbara Gates captured in [...]

Editing Tip: 99% Perfect Writing

September 11, 2010 by Jane Ross  
Filed under Blog, Editing, Publishing, Self publishing

A guest blog post by editor Sofia Voloch
Here’s a mistake I’ve noticed some writers making: using a statistic like “99%” to mean “the overwhelming majority, in my subjective experience.” Statistics like percentages and averages are viewed as facts by most readers because they seem scientific, leading readers to assume that they’re independently verifiable — that, [...]

Visualizing Your Book and Your Readers

August 12, 2010 by Jane Ross  
Filed under Blog, Publishing, Self publishing

There are lots of steps in the process of turning a manuscript into a printed book. As a self-published author, you can opt to keep it simple or you can go all out with a beautifully designed and decorated volume. It really depends on the time and resources you have available, what your vision is [...]

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