I just downloaded a free spell/grammar check called Grammarly.

It’s a terrific and, did I mention, it’s FREE.

Of course, they have a premium edition for a monthly fee. They’ve got bills to pay too.

I just went with their free edition to give it a try…

It found over 700 errors in my novel.

Okay, more half were intentional…  “Dat bitch goan beg tuh die”

And half of the remaining were compound words that I separated. Gotta work on that.

That still left over 100 actual typos and grammar errors that Microsoft Word didn’t catch.

It makes me wonder how many more errors the premium version will catch.

They have an add-in for MS Word, or your favorite browser.

And did I mention… it’s FREE



“When people talk about the genre, I guess they mention my name first,” Stephen King once wrote, “but without Richard Matheson, I wouldn’t be around.” The genre is, of course, horror.

Terrence Rafferty writes an insightful book review on the collection… THE BEST OF RICHARD MATHESON.

Read the full review HERE


Of Note to Would-Be Writers

…Reiss writes that his book’s “guiding spirit and lead witness” is Henry David Thoreau.

Thoreau suffered from insomnia, and his retreat, in 1845, to a simple cabin at Walden Pond was, in part, driven by a desperate need for rest. Thoreau attributed his nightly struggles to the fact that railroads and other industrial changes had disturbed the natural environment around Concord. Reiss
believes that we are victims of “the same environmentally devastating mind-set that Thoreau decried: an attitude of dominion over nature (including our own bodies) through technology and consumerism.”

As the opposite of Thoreau, emblematic of everything he was reacting against, Reiss gives us Honoré de Balzac, who, while Thoreau was in Walden, was fuelling his writing with twenty to fifty cups of coffee a day, often on an empty stomach. Balzac believed that, with caffeine, “sparks shoot all the way to the brain,” and “forms and shapes and characters rear up; the paper is spread with ink.” Balzac typically wrote between fourteen and sixteen hours a day for two decades, producing sixteen volumes of “La Comédie Humaine” within six years.

Thoreau rejected coffee as an artificial stimulant and suggested that communion with nature offered a superior high: “Who does not prefer to be intoxicated by the air he breathes?”

contributor to The New Yorker offers…

The Secrets of Sleep

Why do we need it, and are we getting enough?

Read the full article HERE

Gulfport Fiction Writers

The Gulfport Fiction Writers met this morning at 10a.m.

  • Tom read chapter 44 of his WWII historical novel
  • Steve read chapter 10 of the Gray Detective – nobody got killed this week 🙁
  • Joyce read a chapter about a woman becoming a Taxi Dancer in the 1930s
  • George read a stand-alone short story
  • And I read chapter 1 of Executioner’s remorse

Image result for gulfport library gulfport fl

“Story” and nature of experience

Michael Saler writes in “The Times Literary Supplement”

Once upon a time science seemed destined to replace religion as the
source of all explanations. Today, however, “story” has become the
master metaphor that we use to interpret experience, including the
mysteries of God and Nature. This recourse to story-talk is
everywhere, uniting the two cultures, the arts and sciences. It is
thus not surprising to find the astrophysicist Sean Carroll endorsing
Muriel Rukeyser’s line of poetry, “The universe is made of
stories, not of atoms”. Carroll used it to support his own brief
for the “poetic naturalism” of science: “That is absolutely
correct. There is more to the world than what happens; there are the
ways we make sense of it by telling its story”.

To read the entire article, click HERE 

JM Coetzee — Dos and Don’ts of Classic Novel Writing

at the Guardian has delivered a wonderful article on JM Coetzee’s advice to writers.

In summary…

  1. Know why you are writing
  2. Sometimes writers are unaware of the real reasons they write
  3. Don’t start a new novel until the old one is finished
  4. Write concisely
  5. Look for the richest narrative situation
  6. Don’t worry about plausibility
  7. Don’t be sentimental

This is a terrific piece and well worth reading.

Read the full article HERE