A List of Shots I Have Thrown Away (and One I Took)

In dueling, throwing away one’s shot meant deliberately firing into the ground.  Usually both men threw away their first shots to prove they meant business, which I find hilarious.  “You think I’m afraid to fire my pistol?  Check this out.”  BAM!  “Hole in the ground.”  Macho posturing, on the playground or the dueling ground, is…

The Wild Child of British Literature is Generous with Writing Advice

Writing describes a range of activities, like farming.  Plowing virgin fields – writing new scenes – demands freshness, but there’s also polishing to be done, fact-checking, character-autobiography writing, realigning the text after you’ve made a late decision that affects earlier passages – that kind of work can be done in the fifth, sixth, and seventh…