Something has Been Bothering Me About Shutter Island

This was one of my favourite films of 2010 – pretty much the year I changed my opinion of Leonardo Di Caprio for good. Having been “teenage girl bait” for many years, I know he had already done a few serious roles in which he’d received praise, but my opinion changed with this film and with Inception.
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Not Reading Chic Lit has Nothing to do with “Misogyny”

I always find it a major disappointment when yet another chic lit author, or a journalist who enjoys romance points out that these books are written by women for women complains about the lack of male readership of the genre. Very often, they are quick to jump to the “misogyny” argument (like this article). Aside from the fact that they are misusing the word (misogyny means hatred of women by the way) few people ever actually ask men who don’t like chic lit novels – or more specifically romance – why that is the case. So here, at least, are my reasons for why I have no interest in the genre. Continue reading “Not Reading Chic Lit has Nothing to do with “Misogyny””

Making History with the Pluto Fly By

Source: NASA

 It’s not very often these days we feel that a planetary fly-by really makes history, but today is a little different. This is the first high-res image ever to be beamed back from the furthest reaches of our Solar System. As the New Horizons probe has got closer and closer, the images have gone from blurry to showing us some outstanding features. Continue reading “Making History with the Pluto Fly By”

An Open Letter to Hershey’s

MG Mason:

A very good friend of mine who moved to the USA is incensed that Hershey’s is using bullying tactics to stop US suppliers buying British chocolates. Please read his rant and then sign the petition :)

Originally posted on Old England to New England:

Dear Hershey’s,
I was disgusted to read last week that you have threatened legal action against companies importing British Cadbury’s into the United States causing them to cease importing British chocolate. This is ridiculous; your Cadbury’s doesn’t taste like the real Cadbury’s, British people don’t buy it so you are not losing any sales. British people are not going to replace decent chocolate with something that tastes like vomit and leaves an awful aftertaste that a cough medicine manufacturer would be proud of. What’s more, we are not going to buy any of your other disgusting products to compensate. If you learnt how to make Cadbury’s properly it wouldn’t be as much of an issue; here’s a tip the main ingredient should be milk (the name is Dairy Milk, get it?) not sugar.

What’s even worse is that to add insult to injury you have banned other British chocolate too…

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Pesky Foreigners, Coming Over and Reading my Blog!

Because I’m an obsessive country-checking junkie when it comes to my stats (I don’t know if that’s a thing, but if it isn’t I’ve just made it up), I’ve decided to summarise just how international my blog is. I’ve checked my all times hits to see from which countries I have never received a hit and the five from where I receive the most. I started my blog in October 2010 and WordPress introduced the country of origin feature on 25th February 2012 so I can only go back that far. No matter, October 2010 – Feb 2012 is around a third of this blog’s present life. Continue reading “Pesky Foreigners, Coming Over and Reading my Blog!”

Good Reads Gender Breakdown – My Thoughts

About a month ago, Goodreads published an infographic (I’ve posted it below) showing that men and women read largely their own gender. Roughly 95% of our reading material will be of an author who possesses the same genitals that we do. Though it threw up some interesting statistics (specifically that women are more likely to read new fiction), I feel there is so much more that could have been addressed. Continue reading “Good Reads Gender Breakdown – My Thoughts”

Bonfire Night 2014

I don’t usually touch on annual festivals much here, I usually find little reason to link it to reading or writing but I am making an exception here. Bonfire Night / Guy Fawkes night is one of my favourites. I always find I feel Christmassy the day after. After all, in the UK it’s the last celebration or festival before Christmas. The US has Thanksgiving at the end of November so I imagine the feelings that encourages are pretty similar. Continue reading “Bonfire Night 2014”

Be Careful How You Word Things

This may become a regular thing if I see enough of them. We all lament the poor standards of English in journalists, on signage, Facebook and everywhere else. Sometimes though, those poorly-worded quotes are so poorly worded that it leaves an image other than the one intended. Take this one for example. I know what the journalist from Bristol’s Sunday Post was trying to say, but to me it reads slightly differently. What do you think? Continue reading “Be Careful How You Word Things”

What is “Track Changes” and How Do I Use It?

One of the terms you will undoubtedly come across as a new freelancer, especially if you intend to use a proofreading service where the proofreading goes beyond checking merely for typos and grammatical errors (where the contractor wants you to edit so it is clearer, flows better etc), is “Must know how to use Track Changes

I’d heard of it but never used it. As a fiction writer, I haven’t felt the need to track changes I’d made to a document. Or at least, if I’d decided I didn’t like a passage enough to remove it I’d never felt the inclination to keep the older version as a comparison and if I still didn’t like it I’d keep writing it until I did like it!
Continue reading “What is “Track Changes” and How Do I Use It?”