Books and a Lamp

5 of the most unexpectedly evil characters from literature

Not all villains are simply black and white, and in fact, many of the worst villains seem innocuous at first glance. But among those, who are the worst?

Books

A guide to judging books by their covers

We’re always told not to judge books by their covers, but how else do we decide how to buy them? (I mean, besides the obvious of asking someone who has read it).

5 children’s books that Disney should make into movies

There are many great children’s stories waiting for a bigger audience. But which ones should be sent to the big screen?

Notebook and Books

How writing advice in school often doesn’t apply to writing in real life

In school, students are told to use complex vocabulary, but in reality, many writers try to use simple words, like Ernest Hemingway. What other things are kids told about writing that contradict real life?

The difference between children’s and adults’ books

Writing for children and writing for adults is different. But what are the differences?

Drink, Kindle and Notebook

The importance of “show, don’t tell” in writing

Storytelling is about transporting a person to another world. That’s why showing, not telling, makes better stories.

Still of Piper. Courtesy of Pixar Studios

The short films nominated for Oscars

While there are certainly many good shows being nominated for Best Picture, there are also many great film shorts nominated for Oscars this year. Here are my takes on 10 of them.

Plugging out

Music: a private thing or a communal one?

These days, music is a private thing, a thing you do with headphones on by yourself. But is it always that way?

Drink, Kindle and Notebook

How doing nothing, really, is actually doing something

Many people have heard the (re)phrase, “don’t just do something, stand there!” But isn’t “standing there” doing something?

Hamburgers

Robot Cooking

Is it possible to build machines that can detect and interpret smells? And if so, what would the applications be?