Category Archives: Uncategorized

My Top Ten Favorite Cover Versions of Chuck Berry Songs

Wow. Chuck Berry is gone. Rosanne Cash nailed it in her Instagram post: “Lights out on the Twentieth Century.” Chuck Berry changed how electric guitar is played. His song-writing was poetry for common people. He synthesized musical styles and created … Continue reading

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Talking about Quotation Marks with President Trump

I don’t usually use my blog for political purposes, but President Trump has taken to giving punctuation lessons, and that’s my turf, so here goes. As we know, President Trump tweeted this: Then he tweeted this: When it turned out … Continue reading

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Review: THE ENEMY: DETROIT 1954 by Sara Holbrook

From her “Chicks Up Front” days to a recent piece on how one of her poems was botched by a Texas standardized test, Sara Holbrook has always been in the right place, saying what needs to be said. It’s no … Continue reading

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What’s Not Wrong with All These Writing Conferences

For the past couple of years, I’ve worked in a college writing center.  I really like this job.  Students come to me with their papers, and we confer about their writing.  They think we’re working on the assignments, but my … Continue reading

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Seven More Nonfiction Picture Books for Your Consideration

This is a strong batch of books–no duds here.  Along with some of the books in last month’s installment of reviews, many of these titles can become part of a collection featuring culturally diverse personalities and topics. Frederick Douglass: The … Continue reading

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Six Nonfiction Picture Books for Young Readers

Each month in 2017, I’m planning to offer a round-up of recent nonfiction picture books with the hope that it will help parents and educators at all levels sort through and pick titles that are the best choices for their … Continue reading

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Do Whatever You Want

Before launching this blog six years ago, I wrote posts for a variety of online forums.  From time to time, I re-post them here if they still seem relevant.  This one originally appeared in slightly different form on English Companion. … Continue reading

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Baseball Books for the 2017 Off-Season: Cubs-Kinsella Edition

For this sixth annual round-up of baseball books I’ve read in the past year, I’m thinking about some things that are different this time.  One of them is sad; one of them is joyous. Let’s start with the joyous. The … Continue reading

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The Trouble with Peer Editing (and Some Ways to Fix It)

I learned the hard way about some of the pitfalls involved in inviting students to perform peer-review of each other’s writing. It seems like such a good idea. Weak writers can learn from their peers who are stronger writers. Talking … Continue reading

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2016: My Year in Books

Warning: This post may be of no interest to anyone but myself. Here is my annual reflection on what I read in the past year, with a Top 16 for ’16, a list I may find myself disagreeing with by … Continue reading

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