Over the DePaul summer term, the CMWR held a weekly Book Club in collaboration with the English Language Academy, and our selection was the teen-fiction thriller The Face on the Milk Carton, the first installment of a four-part series and the subsequent inspiration for a TV-movie adaptation. The students enjoyed the book and our discussions were interesting, but the CMWR staff was a bit less… enthusiastic in our reviews. Nathalia Oliveira and Ali DeChancie of the CMWR each wrote a review of the book, partly as a way to analyze some of the author’s literary choices from opposing perspectives, and partly as a way to settle our differences with the book and just become casual acquaintances. (more…)
Watch the Throne: Should Traditional Criticism Watch its Back? August 17, 2011
Last week, Jay-Z and Kanye West dropped their highly anticipated joint album, Watch the Throne. Like any other pop culture event, the immense buildup to the release date meant that fans were quick to take to Twitter and other forms of social media to share their thoughts on the album, track-by-track. So what does that mean?
The Huffington Post decided to find out.
Using sentiment analysis, a procedure in which posts are aggregated and then sorted by whether they use positive or negative words in conjunction with the title of the work being analyzed, Huffington Post staffers were able to assign each individual track a score from 0-100. They then placed those scores on a graph, and voila! A quick and easy visual that tells us which tracks have proven most popular and which tracks…well, not so much. (more…)
Scrawl 8/12 August 12, 2011
Hello, Scrawl Nation!
Looking to break into the world of journalism but aren’t sure where to start? UCWbL Fellow Maureen “Mo” Clancy gives us the lowdown on life as an editorial intern at NewCity. Bored by everything on your bookshelf? Hillary Duff’s debut novel provides an Elixir for even the bluest of summer blues on this week’s Snooki’s Corner. Feeling confident about your vocabulary? This week’s Word of the Day might just blow your mind. Whatever you’re looking for this weekend, Scrawl’s got it all!
Scrawl airs in real time every Friday at 11am central on Radio DePaul.
You might be a winner!: Rewarding bad writing August 11, 2011
Here at the UCWbL, many of us believe in the value of “shitty first drafts,” an idea popularized by the writer Anne Lamott. When beginning a piece, it’s important not to censor ourselves, but rather rely on later revision to move us forward. But bad writing does exist, and we’re all guilty of contributing to the problem at one point or another, and at the times when we don’t succeed, it’s usually best to move on. However, if your trash bin–or your writing career, for that matter–is littered with lamentable failures, sit tight, and don’t empty it out just yet.
One more week to see “The World As Text”! August 5, 2011
“The World As Text,” an installation at Columbia College Chicago’s Center for Book and Paper Arts, will run for just one more week, until August 12.
How to Write Very Little August 4, 2011
“Talking and eloquence are not the same,” Ben Jonson once observed. “To speak, and to speak well, are two things.” In his new book, Microstyle, Christopher Johnson, who is a linguist by training, adds that to speak well nowadays is to speak very little. Microstyle, which you might call a guide to writing for the age of the Internet, promises to explain exactly how to do that.
And not only are they in the news, they’re writing it!
UCWbL Writing Fellows Caylie Sadin and Maureen Clancy are making waves in the Chicago journalism scene this summer with internships at the Chicago Tribune and Newcity Music, respectively. They aren’t your typical paper-filing, coffee-fetching interns, however; both Sadin and Clancy have written and published articles as part of their duties.
Find Caylie’s most recent article HERE
And Maureen’s most recent HERE
Congratulations to both Caylie and Maureen. We can’t wait to see what you do next!
New Hot Topics in Writing Episode: Literature After Dark August 3, 2011
Hot Topics in Writing, the UCWbL’s podcast, has released the second installment of a three part series about resources for writers in Chicago!
In our last episode, we looked at physical publications to which writers could submit their work. For our newest episode, we put down our magazines and hit the streets, taking you with us as we visit venues where writers may read their own work as well as listen to others share their work. We attended three different writing events around the city: Essay Fiesta at the Book Cellar, the Uptown Poetry Slam at the Green Mill, and Reading Under the Influence at Sheffield’s for their themed event, “Poisons.”