I'm sneaking back to the blog a bit, beginning with a full Friday clean-out for you. Enjoy!
> From Grub Street's Muse and the Marketplace, the incomparable Ann Hood's ten tips for "Writing a Kickass Essay," via Jason Landry.
> Want to use song lyrics in your essay, article, or book and not get into legal trouble? Here's a helpful primer -- and boy do writers need one. Crossing a music publisher is no fun.
> Here's a podcast interview with Emily Rapp, about her memoir Still Point of the Turning World, which is on my teetering to-be-read pile.
> Some real numbers about the costs associated with self-publishing.
> Are you, like Ben Dolnick, addicted to author interviews, especially those that impart secrets, tricks, unusual routines and habits that find their way into your cluttered mental file marked "if it worked for them..."?
> Christina Baker Kline, author of the recent New York Times bestselling novel Orphan Train, on how her mother kindled her childhood love of books -- and showed her at a very young age that she could write one.
> Scientific American (via Salon) debates whether e-readers inhibit comprehension. (Is it only me or does anyone wonder why Salon uses a typeface for its posts that is one of the toughest-to-read on the web?)
> Okay, maybe we can't--like David Sedaris--fill theaters with hundreds of people and read aloud to them in order to gauge reaction to works-in-progress. But much of his reading-aloud process, detailed in a Fast Company article, can be duplicated on a real life scale.
> A journal editor offers these "eight structural aspects of a well-rounded (writing) contest".
> If you're as enamored of fashion as words, a literary contest sponsored by Prada might be of interest. Prompt (seemingly inspired by its line of eye wear): "'What are the realities that our eyes give back to us? And how are these realities filtered through lenses?"
> Like long lists of blogs for writers? Here's one with 150 on it.
> Finally, Mental Floss deconstructs a fake alarmist tweet on the briefly hijacked Associated Press Twitter feed. Journalism geeks will love this.