Wit and wisdom for wordsmiths

Category Archives: Creativity

How 2 kicks in the butt got me started on a novel

  Let’s say you had $50 million to invest and you had to decide between sinking it into a Hollywood movie or a Silicon Valley startup. Which would be the better bet? The answer is, neither. Both Hollywood and Silicon Valley make money from a few big hits. The rest of the time, they loseContinue Reading

For one night In Taksim Square, words didn’t matter

Day 15 of Blogathon 2013   A short post today. We’re halfway through this year’s Blogathon! Yesterday an unknown 31-year-old German pianist named Davide Martello played  for 14 straight hours in Istanbul’s Taksim Square, while hundreds of protesters quietly listened. Martello , who built his piano himself, had pulled it on a trailer from hisContinue Reading

The shocking, unknown secret of creativity

‘If you resolve to give up smoking, drinking and loving you don’t actually live longer, it just seems longer.’ Clement Freud Sometime today you’re going to get bored. And it won’t be pretty. You’re going to feel foggy. Anxious. Even scared. When we’re bored the clock doesn’t  move. We feel trapped. We’ll do anything toContinue Reading

Writer’s Clinic Gets Liebster Award!

The Writer’s Clinic  has been honored with the Liebster Blog Award! In case you haven’t  heard of the Liebster, it’s an award given to blogs with fewer than 200 subscribers that are worthy of more recognition and link love. Which is why it’s called the Liebster Award — liebe is German for love. Google isContinue Reading

What a dog bite says about Steve Jobs

Genius though he undoubtedly was, I’d bet Steve Jobs could be a tyrant to work for — and probably to live with. I say this because last week a dog bit me. A big, aggressive Boxer showing me who was the Alpha dude. Now I love big dogs — Golden Retrievers, Labs, German Shepards.  IContinue Reading

Perfection: Does It Take Practice or Talent?

Do you have a dream you’ve given up on? Something you’re convinced you don’t have the talent for and could never achieve? Swedish psychologist Anders Ericsson says forget about talent. What it takes to become, say, a concert pianist, is not talent but 10,000 hours of practice. (10,000 hours of practice, by the way, wouldContinue Reading

Fun with Physics: Pendulums at Play

From today’s BoingBoing comes a post too intriguing not to share. A demo of various lengths of pendulums (hmmmm … . wouldn’t that be pendula?), it’s on YouTube, followed by a series of similar demos.  Some have music; others don’t.  All of them are mesmerizing. Here’s the description of the apparatus: “The period of oneContinue Reading

The Crucial Element You Must Have in Science Writing

Most of us, at least initially, think our job as bloggers is to convey information.  And of course it is, especially if we’re writing about science, where accuracy is essential. But conveying information like a teacher, or a scientist writing for a peer-reviewed journal, is a guarantee a general audience will ignore you. Counter-intuitive asContinue Reading

The Surprising Secret to Success? Daydreams

What one ingredient does it take to hit the ball out of the park – not once in a while but time after time?  What does it take to be the world’s best chess master?  To play at Carnegie Hall? To write an epic novel? If you said talent, guess again. A high IQ? WrongContinue Reading

Actress, Oscar Winner . . . Scientist?

If you watched the Oscars Sunday night, you probably weren’t thinking of Hollywood as a hotbed of scientists. And you’d have been be right —  with one exception. It seems that ten years ago, while a straight A student at Syosset High School on Long Island,  Best Actress winner Natalie Portman made it all theContinue Reading