Stryker Thompson’s mother always wanted to be a writer, but had to shelve her manuscript to care for her family when he was very young. Before he graduated high school, he decided to do something special for her to show his appreciation:
He casually asked his mom to send him files of her chapters, one by one. Maybe he’d read them, but he wasn’t promising.
Of course, he read every one, in the evenings and on weekends, in between studying for seven AP classes and serving as captain of the debate team and pondering German philosophers Nietzsche and Heidegger.
He fixed typos, added page breaks and indents, deleted extra spaces between words. “I got into a groove,” he said, “but it was very meticulous work.”
Warning: this story will leave you teary-eyed. You can buy Petrie’s book, At the End of Magic, on Amazon. I started reading the first few pages and she’s quite a talent.
NPR’s Robert Siegel interviews The Times Diary editor Patrick Kidd about the paper’s decision to pump the sounds of mechanical typewriters into its newsroom:
SIEGEL: I’m sure it is nostalgic to some of the older folks in the newsroom, but what do the younger journalists who didn’t experience this sound in the past make of it?
KIDD: Well, I’m in my late ’30s. I never worked on mechanical typewriters. I think on day one it was mildly irritating. (Laughter) But, as it went on - it becomes soothing actually; you get used to the rhythm. You start typing in concert with it. I think there were still some colleagues who’d get annoyed but, actually, my desk is the closest to the speakers and I - it’s a bit of fun.
I love this. Free idea for the fine folks at Coffitivity: A “1930’s newsroom” setting.
Pen Paper Ink Letter has a great overview of the Midori Traveler’s Notebook, which has quite a following online. I recently purchased my own Traveler’s Notebook and can’t wait to really dig into it. I plan on using one notebook for fiction drafts, one for story ideas and notes, and one for to-do lists and random scribblings.
Publishers, authors, and bookstores are chock full of great boards, from literary quotes to classic bookcovers. It’s easy to get lost perusing these.
I can’t pick just one quote from this Brain Pickings piece. David Foster Wallace was brilliant and his ideas about writing, teaching, and getting better should be mandatory reading for all writers.
Actually, I can pull one quote: Good writing isn’t a science. It’s an art, and the horizon is infinite. You can always get better.