Latest


Bedlam: A Journal of Horror & the Macabre

Robert JE Simpson and I have established a successful creative partnership as editors of Diabolique magazine, which we regrettably left in July. We are, however, pleased to announce a new horror publication: Bedlam is a journal of horror and the macabre, and its first issue will be out in digital and print format in January, 2013. In […]

Diabolique Magazine

Joint statement from Robert J.E. Simpson and David L Rattigan, former editors of Diabolique magazine Tuesday, 31 July 2012, UK Following our sudden resignations on 24 July as editors of Diabolique magazine, we would like publicly to disassociate ourselves from Horror Unlimited, and specifically the partnership of Greg Petaloudis and Dima Ballin, publishers of Diabolique. We […]

Writerliness and Being Writerly

The term “writerly” fans a flame inside me. It’s a virtuous word that speaks of crafting words into sentences and paragraphs with passion, imagination and love. I just searched for a definition of “writerly” and found this: 1. of or characteristic of a writer 2. characterized by the qualities of a writer’s craft, esp. by those that […]

On Passive-Aggressive Wikipedia Edits

The silly but much-cherished rule of never using the grammatical passive in writing has bred some strange notions of what exactly the passive is. To some, “passive” apparently means “any construction that twists the grammar of a sentence so badly that it sounds instinctively wrong to just about everyone.” That would certainly seem to be […]

Writing Is a Craft

My friend received an intemperate email yesterday from someone upset about the editorial policy of an online journal he edits. The writer was irked that the magazine, so he claimed, allowed editors to change an article without the author’s permission. He took offence, declared the policy “barbarous” and announced that he would never submit his […]

Book Review: Write to Sell: The Ultimate Guide to Great Copywriting (Andy Maslen)

Andy Maslen gets straight down to the stuff that matters to copywriters in this concise guide to writing words that sell. The author, a successful marketer and copywriter with some 20-plus years in the industry, pitches the book at anyone that writes copy, whether they’re a newbie, a professional writer or a non-writer who has […]

When to Use the Passive Voice

“Never use the passive where you can use the active.” — George Orwell, “Politics and the English Language” “Don’t use the passive voice” has attained the status of divine commandment in the minds of some editors and writers. As with so many supposed rules of good grammar, however, “No passives” is too general and, followed […]

A Small Orange Creates a Passionate User

This is the story of how a tweet about three rogue punctuation marks bagged me a free T-shirt, a Moleskine notebook and a handwritten note from the CEO from one of the world’s best and brightest web-hosting companies. It began with an email I received from A Small Orange, the hosting company I’ve been using […]

Common Errors in Writing: The Dangling Participle

Dangling participles have, in my opinion, at least two major claims to infamy. First, the phrase is by far the funniest in the writing and editing rulebook. Whenever I hear or read it, I want to say, “Don’t look now, but your participles are dangling.” Second, dangling participles are perhaps the most common grammatical error I […]