She has now used her position at Gingerbread to rail against the “particularly offensive” language of “skivers vs strivers”, saying “such rhetoric drains confidence and self-esteem from those who desperately want, as I did, to get back into the job market”.
Rowling, who separated from her daughter’s father 20 years ago, said her belief that she would immediately find paid work was a “much bigger delusion” than believing she could write a children’s novel.
She later “ended up working a few hours a week at a local church”, where she was deliberately paid the maximum of £15 so she did not lose benefits.
Yes, that’s true. However, there’s a bit before that which gets rather less attention. She and her husband (I think they were married, not sure) were living in Cascais. And after the split she and the child were taken in by friends: please note, not state benefits. I know people who were around there at the time.
The benefits part came when she moved back to England.
I’m afraid that it wearies me somewhat all the talk about how wonderful the state benefit system was to her, how glorious it is that we have such a system. For there is more to it than baby/split/then benefits. Private charity had a part in it as well.
I admit I’ve only just scanned the first couple of chapters so far. But this looks rather fun.
The Age of Global Warming
I was particularly taken with how he dealt with Jevons and his predictions of coal running out. I hadn’t realised that Jevons had been so wildly (and obviously) out in them.
He does get the economic arguments underlying what he’s talking about and for that alone it’s worth having a read I think.
Nearly everything is transported by sea. Sometimes on trains I play a numbers game. The game is to reckon how many clothes and possessions and how much food has been transported by ship. The beads around the woman’s neck; the man’s iPhone.
Apple is actually Cathay Pacific’s largest freight customer……you just do not ship something weighing a few hundred grammes and worth $600 by sea.
A container load of iPhones would be worth well over $20 million. You stick them in airplanes, not ships.
That is, of course, the Late, Great, Richard Feynman.
And I have a very strong feeling that there\’s going to be an opportunity for me to prove this in the next few weeks. A book coming out that will be the opportunity for an extended essay: which will itself turn up as a Kindle I think.
What I intend to do is nail, once and forever, this idea that we\’re imminently going to run out of minerals and metals. And, although I\’ve not read the upcoming book yet (awaiting my review copy!) I\’m pretty sure that the author has made the one gross error that allows me to use it as a peg on which to hang my tale.
So, to you dear readers.
What should the price be? Does anyone know how to massage an Open Office text into Kindle format? Should I charge at all or just insert my PayPal address into the text?
I\’m told that having it free for the first couple of days boosts future sales: what say you?
Anyone actually got any useful ideas?
If you haven\’t read Riotous Assemply then you must. Today.
I discovered the novel when I was a student in London, working at night in a restaurant to pay the bills. A waitress at the place was South African and she\’d not heard of him as a novelist. But she did know the name: he\’d taken her baby photos.
He taught in Natal for a time and then set up a photographic studio in Pietermaritzburg in 1957.
Odd the bits you remember.
To celebrate the holiday weekend there\’s an amazing free Worstall giveaway.
The little big sis\’ bopok can be downloaded for free from Amazon UK or Amazon US (or, indeed, any other Amazon sites you might care to go look at. Four in Germany so far today for example).
OK, do make fun of Dan Brown.
A very, very, well done spoof.
And there was a story about his new book. The translators were all locked into an underground bunker to get the translations done so that it could be released in several languages simultaneously.
But in English his books are famously clunky. The actual language is terrible. The question becomes, are the translations like that too? Or do they manage to clean it up in the other languages?
I don\’t actually know anyone who has read any of the books in another language but I\’d love to know. Are the translations as famously terrible as the English language originals? Or do they take the same plot etc and turn into entirely reasonable novels?
Or not as the case may be:
A study found that men see women with dark hair as \”deeper\” and \”more sensible\” than their blonde counterparts.
It also emerged that men think brunettes take better care of their apearance, make better cooks and are more proficient at keeping the house clean.
Other \”wife-like\” attributes men think brunettes are likely to possess include being more experimental in the bedroom and being better with money.
But do recall that the follow up to the book \”Gentlemen Prefer Blondes\” was called \”But Gentlemen Marry Brunettes\”. So they knew this stuff back in 1925/7 then.
\’I can create Neanderthal baby, I just need willing woman’
A scientist has said it would be possible to clone a Neanderthal baby from ancient DNA if he could find a woman willing to act as a surrogate.
It might indeed be possible but it\’s still remarkably akin to one of those stories.
\”We have virtually abandoned living in traditional societies,\” explains Diamond when we meet. \”But this was the only way of life that humans knew for their first 6m years on the planet. In giving it up over the past few thousand years, we have lost our vulnerability to disease and cold and wild animals, but we have also lost good ways to bring up children, look after old people, stave off diabetes and heart disease and understand the real dangers of everyday life.\”
One of those methods of dealing with the elderly:
The Kaulong people of New Britain used to have an extreme way of dealing with families in mourning. Until the 1950s, newly widowed women on the island off New Guinea were strangled by their husband\’s brothers or, in their absence, by one of their own sons. Custom dictated no other course of action. Failure to comply meant dishonour, and widows would make a point of demanding strangulation as soon as their husbands had expired.
We\’ve lost so much of value with this civilisation shit, haven\’t we?
Other habits have included infanticide and outbreaks of war between neighbours, though these are balanced with many cases of care and compassion, particularly for the elderly, and a concern for the environment that shames the west.
\”Concern for the environment\” eh? It is hunter gatherer societies that ravage it more than any other when population pressure rises. Vide the extinction of all of the edible megafauna where ever mankind emigrated to.
OK, I mean it might do wonders for her literary career. But giving away thousands, tens of thousands, of words of Worstall literary output just reduces the price for other Worstall word output. And we all agree that we cannot have that, don\’t we?
Win a signed copy of the book. Submit a Question to Which the Answer is No that John Rentoul has missed and the 10 best entries will receive copies of the book signed by the author.
Or, win a copy of my current book by writing my next book for me.
Suddenly it hit him. Instead of trying to cajole others to review a client’s work, why not cut out the middleman and write the review himself? Then it would say exactly what the client wanted — that it was a terrific book. A shattering novel. A classic memoir. Will change your life. Lyrical and gripping, Stunning and compelling. Or words to that effect.
In the fall of 2010, Mr. Rutherford started a Web site, GettingBookReviews.com. At first, he advertised that he would review a book for $99. But some clients wanted a chorus proclaiming their excellence. So, for $499, Mr. Rutherford would do 20 online reviews. A few people needed a whole orchestra. For $999, he would do 50.
As someone who has done real book reviews (ie, actually read a book, considered it and then had the review published in a national newspaper that then paid me a fat fee) this sounds like a really great business.
Except for one little problem. People tend not to want to pay for actual real reviews: only for puff pieces. Pity really, I did very much enjoy book reviewing. But bills do have to be paid….
Little Sis\’* novel is free today on Amazon.
Download it if you dare!
* Actually, she\’s my Big Sis, but I\’ve another, Bigger, Sis, so she\’s Little Sis. I think….
Eventually, leaving Rand was no more different or difficult than, say, leaving a friend who had grown to annoy me over time – sure, I was very intimate with her ideas, but that just gave me more insight into their outright dysfunctionality, and the strength to say \”sayonara!\”
OK, so, claim of knowledge of Rand.
Granted, it\’s doubtful that any political group so suspicious of the intelligentsia would actually read Rand\’s 1,200 word magnum opus, Atlas Shrugged,
My, that is a lot of words, isn\’t it?
Never having been able to finish the dreck myself I do wonder what she put on all the other pages though.
Yes, yes, it is.
And remember, if you like it you can always buy a second copy….
As it is said, interesting what they thought was memorable about him at the time:
Bram Stoker, author, theatrical manager, close friend and adviser of the late Sir Henry Irving, died in London last Sunday. For twenty-seven years he was business manager for the famous English actor, in charge of the Lyceum Theatre during Irving\’s tenancy of that house….
His [Stoker\'s] best-known publication is \”Personal Reminiscences of Henry Irving,\” issued in 1908. Among his other works, mostly fantastic fiction, are \”Under the Sunset,\” \”The Snake\’s Pass,\” The Watter\’s Mou,\” The Shoulder of Shasta,\” \”Dracula,\” \”The Mystery of the Sea,\” and \”The Lady of the Shroud.\”
Hmm, seems the publisher has put Chasing Rainbows on Kindle finally.
Not that they told me but……