August 27, 2019
This is just pure fun and a great way for you (or, for authors, your characters) to get the upper hand. Pun intended. Here is yet another gem from The Art of Manliness – how to win at arm wrestling. Check it out!
How to Win an Arm Wrestling Match
July 16, 2019
For when you are stranded on a deserted island. Or just want fresh coconut. Another great how-to from The Art of Manliness.
How to Open a Coconut (With or Without Tools)
July 2, 2019
Here is another great tip from the Art of Manliness. A super simple, super cheap, and effective burglar alarm. Great research for writers and practical advice for all.
A Professional Bodyguard’s DIY Portable Burglar Alarm
March 26, 2019
More great information from The Art of Manliness. This is awesome for self-defense and, of course, authors looking to get their characters on the winning end of a nasty fight.
March 19, 2019
Words of wisdom have trickled through the centuries. From societal influencers to our own family members, we are given guidance on how to become better people. Axioms and advice ranging from success, failure, money, adversity, opportunity, morality, expectations, happiness, and so much more offer valuable life lessons. All we need to do is listen and heed the principles.
This week’s link is to another pearl of an article by The Art of Manliness presenting some of the best epigrams throughout the ages.
March 5, 2019
In the debate on whether or not the Oxford comma is necessary, I say it is. (And will cut you if you disagree. Ok, not really.)
So what is the fuss about? The Oxford comma is the comma used before the coordinating conjunction “and” or “or” in a list of three or more items. It is a stylistic serial comma.
In a 2017 class action lawsuit involving diary drivers, labor disputes, and the Oxford comma (see what I did there?), a Maine court recently ruled in favor of the comma. Read all about it at The Write Life blog. Yes, this happened a couple of years ago, but it illustrates the comma’s important.
February 26, 2019
So…plagiarism… It sucks on so many levels. Most in Romancelandia are very aware of the latest scandal—an “author” who has lifted whole paragraphs from other authors’ works, had them cobbled together, packaged into her “own” books and put up for sale on Amazon. And of course, once her dirty little secret was exposed, she blamed others and disappeared. Today’s link of the week will get you up to speed in what originally happened and what small ways we can help prevent this from happening.
Where it broke: Courtney Milan
Nora Robert’s weigh-in
Ruby-Slippered Sisterhood Perspective
Here is a link to a site that checks for plagiarism and helps prevent theft and fraud. I haven’t used them yet, but I plan to.
There is also Fakespot, which “will ensure you get the most up to date and relevant information to make your online shopping experience as safe and trustworthy as possible.” This will help in culling out the fake from real products.
Sad that people continue to profit off of others’ blood, sweat and tears (lots of tears) to make a quick buck.
February 19, 2019
Check this out! An interactive map of the Earth that shows you what it looked like 20 to 750 millions of years ago. It gives information on the state of the Earth and what living things existed in selected time periods. You can even type in your address or location to see what the geographical area looked like as you travel back in time. Pretty cool and nerdy stuff.
February 5, 2019
Authors do a TON of research on any given topic. I, myself, will research even the smallest, insignificant detail just to make sure my writing is authentic. I’ve been known to haunt libraries and used bookstores for information. These days it is so much easier to utilize the internet. Scour, really. There are countless rabbit holes to fall down. But sometimes, you want a more refined search.
You may have heard of Google Scholar, a search engine that allows you to search literature.
Here are some other online databases that might be helpful.
- Google Books Ngrams Viewer – a graph showing how words/phrases have occurred in a corpus of books over the selected years.
- IMDb – Internet Movie Database – movies, television, and video game
- Encyclopedia Mythica – mythology, folklore, and religion
- Omniglot – encyclopedia focused on languages and writing systems
- AnC – American National Corpus –
- Worldcat – a network of library content
- Encyclopedia Astronautica – a reference web site on space travel
- Acronym Finder – searchable dictionary and database of abbreviations (acronyms, initialisms, and others) and their meanings.
- AllMusic – music albums, artists and songs; reviews and biographies
- Animal Diversity Web – database of animal natural history, distribution, classification, and conservation biology
- Web Gallery of Art – virtual art gallery website
Wikipedia offers a list of academic databases and search engines that are ” useful in an academic setting for finding and accessing articles in academic journals, institutional repositories, archives, or other collections of scientific and other articles.”
January 29, 2019
Very cool information from The Art of Manliness for both the outdoorsy types and for authors of all genres. A Swedish torch lasts for hours. It gives warmth, light, and be used for cooking, all from one chunk of wood. A must read, here.