Hello, chickens! I write to you this week from steamy New Orleans, after a week of panels by day and smoky bars by night. Some of my favorite people, writers whose work I admire, are here. It's always a cool feeling when you get to rub elbows with the greats. I've never lost that wonder, and I hope I never do.
Since Amy and I are mobile this week, this Smatterings will be a little shorter than most. But without further ado...
Here's the skinny on what happened this week:
Nerd alert: there were lots of great linguist-type articles floating around...
If you've lived for any length of time, you'll have noticed the way you used certain words as a kid is different from the way society uses them now. You know what? That's ok. Language is supposed to evolve and adapt—it's how English has transformed over a thousand years to become what we speak today, and it'll change after we're gone. Linguist John McWhorter talks more about this, about how our langugage has "interesting little wrinkles.
You're cleverer than you actually are. Why? Because there are unspoken rules to the English language that we all know—we've just forgotten that we know them. The writer of this article had a post about adjective order that went viral last week (yep, you read that right), and he reveals a few more secrets about our complicated langugage...
Let's get a profound lesson on productivity from a classic arcade game, shall we? (this brilliance is brought to you by Cal Newport, the author of Deep Work). Attention residue is real, y'all—and a real problem.
For the writers: this post from Lisa Alber is spot on—"What to do when your characters need therapy." Have you ever found yourself in this position?
For the writers 2.0: Mr. Pressfield has a few words about Inciting Incidents and "The Call."
For a quick dose of inspiration, here are 27 literary prints to hang in your home library. 💕
And closer to home:
Don't forget: if you sign up for my email list, I'll send you a FREE ebook! And I won't spam your inbox either, because we all have enough email to read. I'll just give you some news and fun goodies from time to time!
That's it from me, y'all. Enjoy autumn's official arrival, be good to your people, go apple picking, and I'll talk to you again soon!