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23

May

nprradiopictures:

Former Clinton and Obama speechwriter Jon Lovett knocked it out of the park last year at Pitzer College’s commencement. We asked the brilliant animator Steve Cutts to bring part of his address to life in pictures. You will likely never look at a commencement gown the same way again.

And yes, the rest of the speech is also worth watching. You can find it in NPR’s spanking newcommencement speech database, an inspiration machine full of wise and funny words going back to 1774.

We Look Amazing In These Gowns

(Via our friends from the NPR Ed team)

Video Credits:
Animation: Steve Cutts for NPR
Producer: John Poole/NPR
Senior Producers: Ben de la Cruz and Matt Thompson/NPR

Yes.

22

May

"When Death Comes" by Mary Oliver

beingblog:

As you read this poem, ask yourself a simple question and take some time to ponder it: "How, then, shall I live?"

When death comes
like the hungry bear in autumn;
when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse

to buy me, and snaps the purse shut;
when death comes
like the…

Can I have this read at my funeral?

18

May

Sun-Times women on the beat lead, inspire

strannik-fev:

Chicago Sun-Times' female reporters talk about sexism, mentoring, mutual support, accomplishments and how their experiences changed for the better over the years

fastcompany:

Elliott Kalan was an intern at The Daily Show (thedailyshow). Then he became a production assistant, a segment producer, a writer, and now, head writer. Here, Kalan talks to Co.Create about the kinds of choices that can help sustain momentum in a career that requires creativity.
Read More>

fastcompany:

Elliott Kalan was an intern at The Daily Show (thedailyshow). Then he became a production assistant, a segment producer, a writer, and now, head writer. Here, Kalan talks to Co.Create about the kinds of choices that can help sustain momentum in a career that requires creativity.

Read More>

15

May

pewresearch:

Our new survey finds that households headed by young adults owing student debt lag far behind their peers in terms of wealth accumulation. 
Households headed by a young, college-educated adult without any student debt obligations have about seven times the typical net worth ($64,700) of households headed by a young, college-educated adult with student debt ($8,700). This is true despite the fact that debtors and non-debtors have nearly identical household incomes in each group.

No student debt! Yay!

pewresearch:

Our new survey finds that households headed by young adults owing student debt lag far behind their peers in terms of wealth accumulation.

Households headed by a young, college-educated adult without any student debt obligations have about seven times the typical net worth ($64,700) of households headed by a young, college-educated adult with student debt ($8,700). This is true despite the fact that debtors and non-debtors have nearly identical household incomes in each group.

No student debt! Yay!

08

May

sundancearchives:

Sundance Institute just announced the filmmakers, projects, and creative advisors for the 34th annual Directors and Screenwriters Labs to take place at the Sundance Resort in Provo Canyon, UT.Some of the notable films supported by the Directors and Screenwriters Labs over the last 30+ years include Cutter Hodierne’s Fishing Without Nets, Ryan Coogler’s Fruitvale Station, Lucy Alibar and Benh Zeitlin’s Beasts of the Southern Wild, Sean Durkin’s Martha Marcy May Marlene, Cary Fukunaga’s Sin Nombre, Miranda July’s Me and You and Everyone We Know, John Cameron Mitchell’s Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Darren Aronofsky’s Requiem for a Dream, Kimberly Peirce’s Boys Don’t Cry, and Allison Anders’ Mi Vida Loca.Read more about the announcement here.Photo by Jonathan Hickerson

Can I please have this camera?

sundancearchives:

Sundance Institute just announced the filmmakers, projects, and creative advisors for the 34th annual Directors and Screenwriters Labs to take place at the Sundance Resort in Provo Canyon, UT.

Some of the notable films supported by the Directors and Screenwriters Labs over the last 30+ years include Cutter Hodierne’s Fishing Without NetsRyan Coogler’s Fruitvale StationLucy Alibar and Benh Zeitlin’s Beasts of the Southern WildSean Durkin’s Martha Marcy May Marlene, Cary Fukunaga’s Sin Nombre, Miranda July’s Me and You and Everyone We Know, John Cameron Mitchell’s Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Darren Aronofsky’s Requiem for a Dream, Kimberly Peirce’s Boys Don’t Cry, and Allison Anders’ Mi Vida Loca.

Read more about the announcement here.

Photo by Jonathan Hickerson

Can I please have this camera?

05

May

Nobody tells this to people who are beginners, I wish someone told me.

All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential to be good, but it’s not that good.

But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn’t have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know its normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story. It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions.

I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s gonna take you a while. It’s normal to take a while. You just have to fight your way through that.

Ira Glass (via writerofscreen)

10

Feb

New at 5: Vomit in the newsroom

20

Jan

pewresearch:

Who reads books?

I was surprised more than a few times. 

pewresearch:

Who reads books?

I was surprised more than a few times. 

17

Dec

theatlantic:

How to Write: A Year in Advice from Franzen, King, Hosseini, and More

This year, I talked to nearly 50 different writers for the By Heart series, a weekly column about beloved quotes and cherished lines. Each author shared the life-changing, values-shaping passages that have helped sustain creative practice throughout his or her career. Their contributions were eclectic and intensely personal: Jim Crace, whose novel Harvest was a finalist for the Man Booker prize this year, shared a folk rhyme from his childhood, the investigative New York Times journalist Michael Moss (Salt, Sugar, Fat) close-read the Frito-Lay slogan, and This American Life host Ira Glass eulogized a longtime friend and collaborator. Though I began by asking each writer the same question—what line is most important to you?—their responses contained no formula.
There was also no specific requirement to talk about craft. And yet writers—being writers—offered a generous bounty of practical writing advice. They shared exercises. They discussed principles of revision. Some presented ways to beat procrastination, or fight back against writing-desk ennui. And a great many shared their thoughts on the most crucial craft question of all: Why does some writing feel dead on the page, while other words thrum with life?
Taken together, these conversations were like attending an MFA program—I learned that much. Here are the best short pieces of writing advice I heard from writers in 2013, a whole year’s worth of wisdom.
Read more.

theatlantic:

How to Write: A Year in Advice from Franzen, King, Hosseini, and More

This year, I talked to nearly 50 different writers for the By Heart series, a weekly column about beloved quotes and cherished lines. Each author shared the life-changing, values-shaping passages that have helped sustain creative practice throughout his or her career. Their contributions were eclectic and intensely personal: Jim Crace, whose novel Harvest was a finalist for the Man Booker prize this year, shared a folk rhyme from his childhood, the investigative New York Times journalist Michael Moss (Salt, Sugar, Fat) close-read the Frito-Lay slogan, and This American Life host Ira Glass eulogized a longtime friend and collaborator. Though I began by asking each writer the same question—what line is most important to you?—their responses contained no formula.

There was also no specific requirement to talk about craft. And yet writers—being writers—offered a generous bounty of practical writing advice. They shared exercises. They discussed principles of revision. Some presented ways to beat procrastination, or fight back against writing-desk ennui. And a great many shared their thoughts on the most crucial craft question of all: Why does some writing feel dead on the page, while other words thrum with life?

Taken together, these conversations were like attending an MFA program—I learned that much. Here are the best short pieces of writing advice I heard from writers in 2013, a whole year’s worth of wisdom.

Read more.