Tag Archives: The Guardian

The Write Stuff

Imagine if there were a University of Your Favourite Stuff in your street and you walked past it for weeks without noticing it. That’s how I felt when I finally stumbled upon the Guardian’s huge series, How To Write. In all there are 62 articles offering advice from writers of every imaginable genre.

I think it’s a sign of confidence when people give away advice on their trade, in a limited marketplace. That’s why I was particularly impressed with Writing Sketches by Richard Herring, David Mitchell & Robert Webb and Honing a Joke by Richard Herring. This latter one, and it’s insistence of mastery of language, struck me as particularly relevant to recent thoughts, as I’ve been captivated to the point of a couple of thousand words of participation in a debate on literacy, in the widest sense, on John Connell’s excellent blog.

Other interesting pieces in this Guardian series include Wendy Cope on poetry, Simon Jenkins on journalism and Ronald Harwood on stage and screenplay.

András Schiff lecture recital mp3s

I look forward to my weekly arrival at Musselburgh Grammar School for many reasons, not the least of which is to see what press cuttings Maestro Bob Paterson (PT Music) has left for me. They’re usually about subjects of mutual fascination – chess, science, education and, of course, music. Recently he left me some pages from the Guardian on my favourite pianist – András Schiff. It concerned his performance of all 32 piano sonatas of Beethoven. There was an invitation to download Schiff’s lecture recitals on the sonatas. I’m guilty of over-using the expression treasure trove but, if you are a fan of Schiff, Beethoven or of piano music in general, then that’s exactly what this is! As Robert Jones points out in a post today, “one of the greatest privileges in life is to be taught by someone who is passionate about their subject.” It doesn’t get much better than having such passion mixed with Schiff’s breadth of knowledge and expressive ability.