Writing Pet Peeves

In a sense, it isn’t right to call the following errors “pet peeves,” since they are, well, errors. It’s not like they’re idiosyncratic to me; it’s not like they’re pets that I nurture, little annoyances I nurse for the pleasure of hating something. It’s just that these are the writing errors that I’m tired of pointing out. I’d like to move on to getting upset about other mistakes you make, to believe that your sins are unique to you instead of stamped out at some kind of demonic factory.

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From Seattle to France, with Love

I was devastated by the Nice attacks. I don't know if it was because this has already been such a difficult year in world events, or because I was just there recently and so know the place, or because of their particularly gruesome nature, but I just can't find any words to say to myself or to anyone else about them. 

Thankfully, we don't always have to say things.

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Our June

When it isn’t summer, I always think of it as a magical time, but can’t always recall why. Sure, the weather is better, but does that really lend so much to my experiences? Last month we moved back to Seattle after 2 years away. It’s bliss. This is some of why.

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Taking Stock

I am taking a moment at the outset of summer to take stock of the year. Though the natural breaking point for the year is December, and though I usually do feel reflective then, as an academic, my years sheer cleanly along the school calendar’s lines, recently involving moves, new places of employ, and similar obvious points of development. So, what has happened just now?

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Extraordinary Life

My favorite part of last night’s American Literature lecture was talking about how Olaudah Equiano’s Interesting Narrative both reads us and revises earlier memoirs.

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In Praise of Peer-Review

Can I just say that I love the peer-review process? Sure, it’s a bit cumbersome, and the timeline to publication rather long, but sometimes it’s enormously helpful.

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It’s your job to be clear, precise, intelligent, resourceful, poetic, and wise, in prose of staggering clarity, all of it perfectly proofread
— Verlyn Klinkenborg

Churchill’s Largess

Only on chapter one, I’m already floored by the resourcefulness of the man, but also his principles. When coalminers staged a strike during his tenure as Chancellor of the Exchequer, he broke it by founding an anti-strikers newspaper. Then, after he’d won, he sided with the miners, steering through parliament a campaign for better wages and safety standards. Noblesse oblige.

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On Trains

There are many ways America could achieve a respectable system in the immediate future. I’m not a student of governance, nor a policy wonk, but these seem to me the most pressing, workable solutions.

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