Weekend Wrap-up: killing your best writing, dissecting the hipster (and toast), anthemic writing manifestos, and more

Happy weekend, everyone! I know most of the continent is drenched in snow, but here in Vancouver we’re getting spring weather…in February! Even the cherryblossoms are in full bloom. It really is bizarre.

I went bin-diving at the local flea market this afternoon and was sweltering half the time, overdressed in my light jacket. Look at that cerulean-blue sky.


This week to share in writing:

  1. A professor’s 10-point manifesto on writing – everything grilled down to the essential. Practical and inspiring.
  2. Why it’s important to tell your critique partners exactly what you want from them. Three levels of critique for three stages of writing, exemplified as three different ice cream flavours. A must-read for those who want value out of workshop sessions (and not get hurt!).
  3. Brainpickings’ curated guide of advice on reading like a writer. . . by “absorbing, digesting, and appropriating the very qualities that make great literature great.”
  4. Why you should “murder your darlings” – or kill the very phrases and words you’re most proud of in a piece of original writing. (To be honest, I was suspicious of this notion upon the start of this article, but the author has a good point).
  5. For all you kids hoping to get famous through the literary magazine route, practical tips on submitting shorts from a seasoned editor.

This week to share in everything else:

  1. Social media advice from history’s greatest writers. “I love deadlines,” says Douglas Adams. “I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.”
  2. An intelligent dissection into the root of hipsterism (and hipster toast): is the contemporary subculture defined by the pursuit of irony or is it more “a product of privilege as well as crisis”?
  3. Stunning photos of modern people dressing and living like it’s the golden age of 50s rockabilly. 
  4. A linguistic study into why the “keep calm and carry on” phenomenon is a phenomenon – did you know it originated from a British World War II poster?
  5. Is art becoming a pursuit exclusive to the elite? The danger of an elevated creative industry. “To make art now is just another inheritance.”

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