How To Write Better: Borrowing From Chemistry by @DFriedmanAuthor #write #writer #chemistry

Better Writing Through Chemistry  In 1935, Dupont promised they’d bring us better living through chemistry. Today, the phrase is used ironically for movie and album titles and most especially to describe recreational drug use. Acknowledging that chemistry has improved our lives is bromidic. Less well known is that the chemical lexicon, demonstrably miscible with our…

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Although I had tried to make The Writer’s Brush: Paintings, Drawings, and Sculpture by Writers as comprehensive as possible, as I acknowledged in the preface, I knew that with new writer-artists appearing every day that it would be out of date as soon as it was published.  Omissions were partially rectified with two large exhibitions…

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We’ve all had those head-thumping moments—coming up with the crushing argument when our adversary is long gone, remembering the ingredient left out of the casserole, the part that should have been done or installed before the part just finished with.  Many such omissions are fixable, even if at some cost or inconvenience.  But imagine writing…

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unorthodox netflix

We all know that when a movie opens with “based on” or “inspired by” true events that what we are about to see is only remotely connected with historic truth. But we want to believe we’re getting lived reality and not just writerly invention so we’re happy to accept the fiction that follows. “Unorthodox,” the…

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freeman dyson

Freeman Dyson, the legendary polymath of Princeton’s Institute for Advanced Study, died a week and a half ago. He leaves behind prodigious contributions in mathematics and physics and, perhaps equally important, an iconoclastic philosophy and gadfly writings that challenged consensus thinking, particularly, and rather notoriously, in the sphere of climate change. He also promoted some…

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parasite

“Parasite” (Bong Joon-Ho 2019) “Parasite” is not what you’re being told it is. A review with spoilers. The New York Times this morning joins other media commentators in describing this movie as a “class-struggle thriller” and, in the same post-Oscar article, as a “comedy-thriller.” These are misleading descriptives. Parasite is not about class struggle, although…

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Amiri Baraka

“Politics is to protect truth and beauty.” Amiri Baraka, famed leader of the Black Arts Movement, was a poet, playwright, jazz critic, and actor. He was also a notorious political revolutionary who did not cease protesting despite arrests and beatings by the Newark police and struggling to install an honest government that would respond to…

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interfaces

Voilá, the latest issue of INTERFACES, internationally renowned journal of text and image. This issue focuses on images and memories, with fascinating discussions ranging from fiction that uses photographs with its text, to Ken Burns’ recontextualizing photojournalism in his Vietnam War documentary and, as an added treat, my on-camera interview with Jules Feiffer, the brilliant…

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Susan Minot

“I like to say ‘I write,’ or ‘I paint,’ and not ‘I am an anything.” The award-winning writer of novels, short stories, screenplays, and poems, Susan Minot says she grew up in a family in which everyone always had something before them to do with their hands. It is a habit that has stayed with…

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Happy 100th Birthday Lawrence Ferlinghetti

Legendary poet, artist, publisher and social activist Lawrence Ferlinghetti will celebrate his 100th birthday on March 24. My on-camera interview with him in 2001 has been edited into a four minute homage by Michelle Memran, producer and director of last year’s critically lauded film “The Rest I Make Up.” After producing no fewer than 30…

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Charlie Brown, Marvel, and Clifford Thompson: Inspired by Comics

Writer-Artist 14: Clifford Thompson “Being at odds with the world around you is a common theme among personal essayists, and my first model of an artistic treatment of such themes was Peanuts.” Writing and Art Were a Single Pursuit Even as a child of seven or eight, Thompson says his attempts at writing and art…

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interfaces

INTERFACES, The award-winning international journal of text and image, co-published, in French and English, by the College of the Holy Cross, the Sorbonne, and the University of Bourgogne, has done me the honor of making me a contributor. In the current issue, Maurice Géracht of Holy Cross introduces me and The Writer’s Brush interview series…

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Jules Feiffer

“My goal was to overthrow the government…” – Jules Feiffer What a treat it was to chat with Jules Feiffer, Pulitzer Prize and Academy Award-winning cartoonist, playwright, screenwriter, novelist, author of more than 35 books, illustrator, and for decades the most widely read satirist in America. Enjoy this candid interview in which he explains how…

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