Hey there, happy Sunday!
Here are 10 things for writers this week:
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- "Children are increasingly finding it hard to hold pens and pencils because of an excessive use of technology," and "not establishing writing skills as a child can, in many instances, seriously affect the pen control, fluency and handwriting style of an adult." (About 16 months ago, when I wanted to improve my own handwriting, I bought these Spencerian Penmanship workbooks. The exercises are hard—and were originally designed for grade school students in the 1800s. Kinda fun, though.)
+ Why the pencil is the perfect object (and what carbohydrate was the original eraser).
- Meet the designers behind your favorite book covers. (Who remembers the behind-the-scenes video of Elizabeth Gilbert's Big Magic book cover creation?)
- The Worst Job I Ever Had: a new monthly column where creatives tell us about their humble beginnings. First up, photographer Lydia Garrett, who spent the weekends of her 15th year "fill[ing] little plastic bags with dried treats for dogs, birds, and squirrels." For $4.25 an hour.
- The flourishing illegal papyrus trade on eBay and money laundering via author impersonation on Amazon.
- Complete with a voice made for podcasting, How it Began's Brad Harris tells a good story about the origin of the book. Did you know that ancient scribes used to require the hides of 170+ animals to transcribe a single Bible?
- Prepare yourself for some sticker shock: A buyer's guide to the most beautiful library ladders.
- "I revise endlessly. Even after publication." Ha! Clarence Major and 14 more poets on revision.
- Malcolm Gladwell is teaching a writing course for MasterClass.
- Why I pulled my winning story from a literary magazine. What would you do?
- The online editing platform Grammarly made headlines last month because of a security bug that compromised user privacy, but the enduring story is that their services just aren't that good. Don't trust your writing to algorithms, friends.
See you next Sunday,