James Bond, creativity, listening, and data

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John Logan, the scriptwriter behind two of the latest James Bond movies, is worried that when Amazon buys MGM, it will ruin 007. But data and corporate control doesn’t necessarily ruin creativity. It all depends on who’s making the creative decisions. John Logan’s lament for 007 Here’s some of what John Logan, co-writer of “Skyfall” … Continued

The emotional side of editing (and being edited)

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It’s your prose, lovingly crafted. An editor has now started tearing it apart. What’s your reaction? Are you angry? Sad? Hurt? Here’s how to deal with it. The context for this post is personal. For the last two weeks, I’ve been working on an op-ed about Facebook and similar sites for the Sunday opinion page … Continued

Be mean to prose and nice to people

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I hate bad prose. (Maybe you’ve noticed.) This affects the way I edit: with inspiration, with passion, instinctively, and relentlessly. All prose has flaws — I find them and critique them mercilessly. I can’t help it. And weirdly, people seem to like it. When a writer sends me something inadequate, I tear it apart. I delete … Continued