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Mark Forsyth’s Elements of Eloquence Part 2: The Cheat Sheet

Here are the classical rules of rhetoric, illustrated and made simple. Based on Mark Forsyth's Elements of Eloquence. I hope that you enjoy them and that this handy cheat sheet helps you to improve your writing.

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Book Review: The Pine Islands by Marion Poschmann

Book Review: The Pine Islands by Marion Poschmann

*No spoilers Recently translated into English from German, The Pine Islands tells the story of Gilbert Silvester, a stuffy middle-aged lecturer in Germany. His area of academic specialisation is beard fashions in film. One day he finds out his wife is cheating on him (or so he believes, we never discover the truth). So he…

10 Interesting Things I Found on the Internet this Week #9

1. Olan Ventura's surreal splashes of colour in Still Life With Golden Goblet Here is a quirky kaleidoscope of things that inspired me this week, I hope you enjoy them. Let me know if you have any things of your own to share...Much love Olan Ventura, Still Life With Golden Goblet, 2019, acrylic on canvas,…

Hold the shell of your consciousness to your ear

Wherever you are, whatever stresses you are feeling, just remember the free and beautiful moments and memories from your world, relish and collect them and hold them close to you. They will sustain your heart when it feels fragile and sustain your soul when you are riven with fear. You have oceans of love inside…

Not the End of the World by Kate Atkinson

Book Review: Not the End of the World by Kate Atkinson

Kate Atkinson achieved great fame for her book Life After Life. This is one of her earlier and lesser known collections of short stories. I have to admit I never got into Life After Life, so I was a bit dubious about whether or not I would like this one. However, I was absolutely transfixed…

10 Uplifting Things I Found on the Internet This Week #8

10 Uplifting Things I Found on the Internet This Week #8

Here are some randomisities both old and new that I found this week and wanted to share with you. Take 1 or two with a cup of tea and a few buttered scones and have a good lie down if you want to have a break from the world for a while. 1. In the…

The symbolism of The Lady and the Unicorn tapestry cycle

The symbolism of The Lady and the Unicorn tapestry cycle

Detail of ‘Smell’ c1500, from The lady and the unicorn series. wool and silk, 368 x 322 cm. Musée de Cluny – Musée national du Moyen Âge, Paris Photo © RMN-GP / M Urtado Mark De Vitis, University of Sydney The arrival of The Lady and the Unicorn tapestry cycle at the Art Gallery of…

Book Review: Medieval Bodies: Life and Death in the Middle Ages by Jack Hartnell

Book Review: Medieval Bodies Life and Death in the Middle Ages by Jake Hartnell

Art Historian Jake Hartnell takes us on a macabre and enthralling journey from head to toe in the medieval human body. This is fascinating because, even though we share the same bodies as our medieval ancestors, we had wildly diverging beliefs about the inherent symbolic power of parts of our bodies and what could heal,…

Book Review: Kiss Kiss by Roald Dahl

Book Review: Kiss Kiss by Roald Dahl

Book Review: Kiss Kiss by Roald Dahl Roald Dahl may be the writer of gross-out and macabre tales for children but he also wrote darker, more delightfully grotesque and adult short stories such as this collection Kiss Kiss, along with his other adult short story collection Tales of the Unexpected. Written in 1960 – there…

Book Review: Island of Wings by Karin Altenberg https://wp.me/p41CQf-KRb

Six Exciting Frontier Novels Set at the Extreme Edges of Civilisation

Sometimes you want to be right there at the edge of an icy cliff staring death right in the face. But not really, just in your imagination. Here are some poetic, beautifully written and profound adventure and survival stories that will take you to dangerous places, without having to leave your sofa. To the Bright…

Book Review: The Lives of the Surrealists by Desmond Morris

Book Review: The Lives of the Surrealists by Desmond Morris

This is an incredible book. Written by Desmond Morris who is a prominent Zoologist and well-known for his book The Naked Ape. It's possibly less widely known that Morris was himself a surrealist and knew many of the prominent surrealists in the art movement. I have to admit not knowing much about Surrealism prior to…

10 Uplifting things I found on the internet this week #7

10 Uplifting things I found on the internet this week #7

1. Moons of Nirn: A 90 minute atmospheric ambient mix An epic and transporting mix of emotional ambient music, along with stunning footage of the Aurora Borealis. This makes for an awe-inspiring background soundtrack to the rest of my top ten. https://youtu.be/U9Phu1vCUVE 2. Wycrow: Finding Stillness Inspiring fellow blogger Wycrow talks about how to find…

The Book of Symbols: Reflections of Archetypal Images by the Archive for Research into Archetypal Sybolism (Taschen)

Book Review: The Book of Symbols by the Archive for Research in Archetypal Symbolism (ARAS)

The Book of Symbols is a masterpiece of art history, philosophy, mysticism, psychology, anthropology, biology and spirituality. It brings together the history of various symbols, concepts and objects from many cultures and civilisations.

Organic skincare review: Kereru

Organic skincare review: Kereru

*This is not a paid promotion – I’m just a fan of this brand. I found this non-descript, non-advertised, old-fashioned brand of organic skincare at an annual street festival in Wellington called Newtown Festival, where the friendly owner/creator was selling her wares. Kereru's market stall I tried Kereru's skincare without expecting much and was completely…

A tribute to the phenomenal Scottish writer William McIllvanney

Book Review: Docherty by William McIlvanney

An epic story of a mining family at the beginning of the 20th Century by Scottish national treasure William McIlvanney. The Dochertys live in the fictional town of Graithnock in Ayrshire, Scotland. The clan are headed by Tam, a hard man but a good hearted one who lifts up his son on the day he…

A market in Santorini, Greece at Dusk

10 Uplifting things I found on the internet this week #6

1. A book diorama of Georgian Dublin 2. Bunraku's atmospheric and chilled mix of ambient tracks inspired by different parts of Tokyo https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLXYvr4JfdB5wNi2fBnotikIu3wXMxwDcg 3. The world's smallest and deadliest cat https://twitter.com/wonderofscience/status/1185331394332880896?s=20 4. Tree trunk landscape art by Alison Moritsugu https://twitter.com/ivanik_oksana/status/1261668587384823810 5. A recipe for salted caramel matcha latte by Cooking with a Wallflower https://cookingwithawallflower.com/2020/05/20/salted-caramel-matcha-latte/ 6.…

Book Review: SPQR by Mary Beard

Book Review: SPQR by Mary Beard

I really wanted to love this book because I am a huge Mary Beard fan and I love her enthusiastic, passionate and fascinating documentaries about the Romans. As a novice to this topic, I was really craving a book that would educate me and also sustain my interest. About a decade ago, I waded through…

Ancient word of the day: Algorithm

Ancient word of the day: Algorithm

The ancient Muslim empire in the city of Baghdad was the birthplace of the word (and the concept of the) algorithm. In the year 820 AD, a Persian genius named Muhammed ibn Musa al-Khwarizmi created the concept of the algorithm and algebra in an ancient book called Kitab al-Jebr. The book Kitab al-Jebr (later latinised…

The world according to Anton Chekhov

The world according to Anton Chekhov

Anton Chekhov defied description with his writing. With his limber and sharp mind he was able to craft and bring alive 18th Century Russia in such a delicate, poignant and deeply emotional way that it will leave you breathless and gasping. To read his short stories is to be plunged into a completely different realm.…