Recent posts – Page 145

  • Manifestos

    I’ve been spending some time recently at The Really Free School in London, which is one of the greatest responses imaginable to the announcement of rising tuition fees: squat Guy Ritchie’s (empty) £6m Fitzrovia mansion and open its doors as a free centre of education, where people can learn...

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  • But No Elephants: reading targets versus reading pleasures

    A colleague sent me an email asking if we could squeeze one more delegate into an already full training day. I sent back: “Sure, but no elephants”. Unsurprisingly, the response I received back said “?”. Let me explain. But No Elephants is a book I remember reading as a child. Grandmother Tildy...

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  • The Linguistic Genius of Babies

    If you’ve read How Babies Think by Alison Gopnik, Patricia Kuhl and Andrew Meltzoff, then you know that babies are thinking about the world and processing information from the minute they’re born – or even before. They come into the world ready to interact with people and their environment, craving...

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  • How to be a Writer, Part 2

    Now you may start again. Grip the pen in the ache of your fist and force it into the shape of words. Do not think. Think all you can. Think about not thinking. The stories will come, but you have worked hard to ensure that they are buried deep. Now it is your choice: you can look away while they...

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  • How to be a Writer, Part 1

    It begins in childhood, when you don't know any better. You are little, so imagine being bigger. Imagine being smaller, longer, wider, inflatable, amphibian, in outer space. Make your Barbies into assassins. Make your GI Joes into the Loch Ness monster. Make a mess, make a fuss, make towers of...

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  • Music to Write By

    I used to think that I needed total silence to write. Definitely no radio, television or coffee shops. Then one day, I heard Linkin Park 's 'One Step Closer', and it reminded me of a longer than expected walk I once took along Avalon Boulevard in Los Angeles, after having been at an LA Galaxy...

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