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This Is Your Brain on Writing

When I teach creative writing, I notice that novices frequently write as if describing a what a TV screen would show if a camera had zoomed in for a close-up of their narrator’s face. By contrast, an experienced writer would rely on a much wider range of storytelling techniqes, including dialogue and interior thoughts. “What do you mean?” I say, my brows furrowing in confusion. “Hold on,” says the old man.…

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Verizon’s $4.4 billion deal for AOL sends AOL stock on a tear

Verizon has experimented with journalism before, briefly running Sugarstring — where reporters were banned from covering issues like government surveilance and net neutrality (topics in which Verizon is a newsmaker). Verizon buying AOL gives the biggest US wireless carrier access to AOL’s successful digital advertising service and content including the Huffington Post news website. —CS Monitor

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Kids Today: A Response to Mark Bauerlein (from “Dean Dad”)

Mark Bauerlein’s essay “What’s the Point of a Professor?” muses on how the professional pressure on professors affects their availablity to students, especially when those students come to college mostly for job training (rather than a character-building exposure to a world of ideas). In his response, “Dean Dad” points out the impact of higher education’s growing reliance on an army of part-time adjunct instructors (who are hired on a class-by-class…

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BWW Reviews: Prepare Ye for GODSPELL in Fox Chapel

  I’d like to say a few words in defense of community theatre: why are we so hard on it? I’ve done it. You’ve done it. Sure, sometime it can be rough around the edges, but more often than not, like this production, it produces something genuine and authentic and beautiful. A quick glance at the program showed that the cast is made up of nurses, producers, government workers, students…

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10 top writing tips and the psychology behind them

There are plenty of folks happy to tell you how to write better, just as any doctor will tell you to “eat right and exercise.” But changing your writing (or eating) habits only happens when you understand why you do what you do. I can help you with that. | That proposal or email you wrote must now compete for attention with Facebook and the Huffington Post. Here’s how to compete…