Category Archives: On Writing

Source-NOAA and Woods Hole Sea Grant. Graphics by Oliver Lude March 14

Best of Arbiter News

  Here are some of our best stories: Marine Debris: What Trash Does to Our Oceans. WASHINGTON, March 11, 2014—A significant amount of the world’s waste ends up in our oceans. Each year, Americans alone produce 200 million tons of garbage, enough to fill a football stadium from top to bottom twice a day. Much of it ends up in […]

logo-banner February 21

Launch of Arbiter News, Best of the Week, Call for Contributors

I am delighted to announce the launch of Arbiter News! We believe there should be a place on the internet where thinkers can articulate their findings on a subject, present both sides, and have meaningful dialogue with others without the polarizing rhetoric that dominates the media today. The change starts with the philosophy of the organization. It’s time […]

made on Make A Flake January 02

Grammar Tip: Writing Numbers

Rule: Single digit, whole numbers should be spelled out. Numbers greater than nine should be written in numeral form.  I have four siblings. She gave me 10 pieces of candy

button_final_1 April 28

The Power of Small Things, guest post by Elizabeth Jennings, author of THE BUTTON COLLECTOR

Elizabeth Jennings, author of THE BUTTON COLLECTOR Years ago, I began writing a novel based on a family’s collection of discarded buttons because I liked the idea of small, tangible items telling stories that weave together to form a larger truth. At the time, I had no idea how many button aficionados exist in this […]

Bloggers: writers, cooks, cyclists helping each other on Facebook

February 27, 2013 – A Facebook page can be a great way to grow your readership and exposure.  However, your page is only as successful as the number of people who have “liked” it.  When someone likes your page, any update, link, picture and video that you post appears on that person’s main Facebook feed. So […]

Gertrude Stein 1914, Flickr Commons January 26

10 Ways to Beat Writer’s Block

  All writers experience writers’s block.  What is important is getting through it.  Some techniques will work for you, while others may not.  It is important to find what you are successful with and continuing to develop that technique or exercise.  Try each once or twice, then repeat the ones that gave you the best […]

The Many Versions of A Visit From St. Nicholas (‘Twas the Night Before Christmas)

WASHINGTON DC, December 23, 2012- Few works of literature have had as many alternate versions written as Clement Clarke Moore‘s A Visit From St. Nicholas (‘Twas the Night Before Christmas).  Here are a few of the ones I’ve found. My favorite by far is the Spanglish version, for obvious reasons: A Spanglish ‘Twas the Night […]

made on Make A Flake October 28

Writing a Novel Using the Snowflake Method

There are several versions of the Snowflake Method to writing a novel.  My personal favorite is Randy Ingermanson’s version on his website, AdvancedFictionWriting.com.  I strongly suggest reading Ingermanson’s page on the Snowflake Method if you are about to put it into practice.  I based my version largely on Ingermanson’s, but being a visual learner and […]

Gabriel García Márquez, How Ideas For Stories and Novels Are Born: An Image

It all starts with an image… This is a short excerpt from Gabriel García Márquez‘s El olor a la guayaba (The Smell of Guava), a series of interviews/conversations with Plinio Apuleyo Mendoza (Tunja, 1932), Colombian politician, journalist and writer.  The translation is mine: Mendoza: What is, in your case, the starting point of a book? García […]

424px-AbelardoCastillo October 08

Writing Advice from Abelardo Castillo

  Abelardo Castillo (Buenos Aires, 1935) is an Argentinian writer, novelist, essayist, and playwright.  He is also well known for his short stories including “Ernesto’s Mother“.  An amateur boxer in his youth, Castillo worked as director of several literary magazines including El Escarabajo de Oro and El Ornitorrinco.  Following are a few tips from his book Ser Escritor (Being […]

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