Helen Sword talks about trimming your prose with The Writer’s Diet

CMOS: How did you come to think about writing as “flabby”? HS: Many years ago, I read Richard Lanham’s book Revising Prose, which influenced me deeply as a writer. Lanham teaches you to identify the “lard factor” in your writing, based on the percentage of words that you could omit without significantly changing its meaning. The Writer’s Diet follows similar principles, but with

Schwa Fire founder Michael Erard on language journalism

Language lovers now have a new place to get their linguistic fix. Schwa Fire is a new, digital-only magazine devoted to language journalism. Its founder, Michael Erard, is aiming for the publication to be “This American Life, but for language” and has already put out a strong first issue. Both paid and free content . . .