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Use Short Sentences.- Writers who wish to impart to their productions power and pungency, who wish to keep the reader's attention upon the tiptoe of activity, who desire to escape the imputation of pedantry and who seek to surcharge their sentiments with sparkle and spirit, will do well to bear in mind constantly that long, lingering sentences, unduly overburdened with an abundance of phrases, clauses, and parenthetical observations of a more or less digressive character, are apt to be tiresome to the reader, especially if the subject-matter be at all profound or ponderous, to place an undue strain upon his powers of concentration and to leave him with a confused concept of the ideas which the writer apparently has been at great pains to concentrate, while short, snappy sentences, on the other hand, with the frequent recurrence of subject and predicate, thus recalling and emphasizing the idea to be expressed as the development of the thought proceeds, like numerous sign-posts upon an untraveled road, these frequent breaks having the effect of taking a new hold upon the reader's attention, oases in the desert of words, as it were, will be found to be much more effective, much more conductive to clarity, and far better calculated to preserve the contact, the wireless connection, SO to speak, between the writer and the reader, provided, however, and it is always very easy to err through a too strict and too literal application of a general rule, that the sentences are not so short as to give a jerky, choppy, and sketchy effect and to scatter the reader's attention so often as to send him wool-gathering completely. — Ellis O. Jones, in Life
Longfellow have not written poems great enough; not that the great poets of our English tongue have not written already more than we can hope to read; not that the standard volumes of poetry are not sufficiently modern. But we always need new poets to produce poetry: the production of poetry should never cease.
Unhappy the land in which there is famine and where people hunger for bread. More unhappy the land where there is a dearth of mysticism, a scarcity of poetic expression, a lack of blossoming of the language into new forms of beauty. Unhappy the land in which there is drought, where the springs no longer flow and where the brooks do not sparkle in the sunlight, where fields are thirsty and men and animals suffer from lack of water. More unhappy the land where idealism is dead and there is a drought of spiritual inspiration.
It used to be commonly believed — it still is by many that poetic genius is very rare, almost superhuman. In reality it is widely distributed, like the capacity to sing. A nation which sings, which keeps its songs and teaches them to its children, which expresses its spirit in new songs, will not see the springs of its idealism go dry. A nation in which poetry is continually produced wilk not thirst for inspiration.
American life has produced poetry. Not only is it in our own mother tongue, but it could not have been produced in any other English-speaking land in the world. American life sings. No one quite understands the American spirit who does not appreciate its new poetry. Christian Register.
LITERARY ARTICLES IN PERIODICALS.
[Readers who send to the publishers of the periodicals indexed for copies of the periodicals containing the articles mentioned in the following reference list wili confer a favor if they will mention THE WRITER.]
JOSEPH PULITZER, REMINISCENCES OF A SECRETARY. Alleyne Ireland. Metropolitan for December. AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF S. SAMUEL MCCLURE. III. McClure's for December.
THE SENSE OF PERSONALITY AND SOME RECENT NOVELS. Frederic Taber Cooper. Bookman for December.
AREMINISCENCE. William Dean Howells. North American Review for December.
GEORGE SAND: A LAW UNTO HERSELF. Florence Leftwich Ravenel. North American Review for Decem. ber.
OUR LITERARY CONVENTIONS. Louise Collier WillCox. North American Review for December.
THE MAN OF LETTERS AND THE NEW ART OF THE THEATRE. Walter Prichard Eaton. Century for December.
NEWSPAPERS AND MAGAZINES. The Spirit of the Century, in Century for December. THE MULTIPLICITY OF NOVELS. Harper's Magazine for December.
ON Two PLACE-NAMES IN "THANATOPSIS." John William Scholl. Modern Language Notes for December.
MARIE CORELLI'S SPARRING PARTNER ( Hall Caine ). H. L. Mencken. Smart Set for December. PROFESSIONAL JOURNALISM. F. C. Ormsby-Johnson. Author (London) for November.
PUTTING A NOVEL ON THE MARKET. F. G. Browne. Reprinted from the Bookseller, Newsdealer and Stationer in the Author (London) for November.
MAKING THE NEWSPAPER AN INFLUENCE FOR GOOD. Louis Wiley (Business Manager of the New York Times). With portrait. Business America for November.
How A MOVING-PICTURE PLAY IS WRITTEN. Lewis Allen. Collier's for November 1.
THE PREACHER'S USE or ROMANCE. Rev. Samuel McChord Crothers, D. D. Christian Register for November 6.
AN IRISHMAN, A CLERGYMAN, AND A PLAYWRIGHT ("George A. Birmingham "). Sydney Brooks. Harper's Weekly for November 15.
THE BOOKS I READ Now. Richard Le Gallienne. Harper's Weekly for November 15.
DR. ALFRED RUSSEL WALLACE. With portrait. W. B. Northrop. Outlook for November 22.
A BENGALI POET (Rabindranath Tagore). Outlook for November 29.
MRS. EMILY HUNTINGTON MILLER. With portrait.. Louise Manning Hodgkins. Zion's Herald for No
HAVE WE LOST THE ART OF HUMOR ? Mary S. Watts. New York Times Review for November 30.
NEWS AND NOTES.
The Nobel Prize for literature for 1913 has been awarded to the British Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore, this being the first time that this prize has been given to anybody but a white person. Tagore himself translates his poems into English.
The Authors' League of America has opened against certain moving-picture interests a fight which involves the validity of nearly all book copyrights issued in recent years. The moving-picture people contend that when a novel or short story, disposed of in the usual way, is copyrighted in a magazine, the copyright becomes invalid so far as other forms of publication are concerned that upon the expiration of serial publication, any one is at liberty to republish the work, to dramatize it, or to produce it in moving pictures. A Los Angeles court has rendered a decision in accordance with this view. Should this decision hold, it will take from the best known authors of the country from one-half to one-third of their incomes, and the Authors' League will take the matter to the United States supreme court, if necessary.
Mrs. Katharine D. Osbourne has obtained a divorce from Lloyd Osbourne, the author and step-son of Robert Louis Stevenson, on on the ground of desertion. Mrs. Osbourne is awarded alimony and the custody of the two Osbourne children.
Dr. Talcott Williams, dean of the Pulitzer School of Journalism in Columbia University, has been elected president of the American Conference of Teachers of Journalism. Other officers elected are: Vice-President, F. L. Martin, University of Missouri; secretary and treasurer, James Melvin Lee, New York University; executive committee, W. G. Bleyer, University of Wisconsin, J. W. Piercy, University of Indiana.
Plans for the establishment of a bibliographical research institute, the first in America, designed to furnish authoritative information and data on newspaper, magazine, periodical, and book publications, are being made by the Bibliographical Society of America, according to the president, Professor Adolph C. Von Noe, of the University of Chicago. According to the plans, the institute is intended to supply the deficiency in bibliographical data in modern libraries. All publications issued in this country and abroad will be recorded and described.
Willard Huntington Wright is preparing "Richard Hovey and His Friends." It will appear rext spring.
"The Life of Edward Bulwer, First Lord Lytton," by his grandson, the Earl of Lytton, is published by the Macmillan Com
Paul Verlaine," by Stefan Zweig, is published by John W. Luce & Co., Boston.
Gilbert K. Chesterton is preparing a volume on Charles Kingsley for the English Men of Letters" series.
A critical study of Henry James is now in active preparation by the English critic, Ford Madox Hueffer.
"George Borrow and His Circle," by Clement K. Shorter, is published in London by Hodder & Stoughton.
For the encouragement of historical research the American Historical Association offers two prizes, each of $200 the Justin Winsor prize in American history and the Herbert Baxter Adams prize in European history. Each is awarded biennially (the Winsor prize in the even years and the Adams prize in the odd years for the best unpublished monograph submitted to the committee on awards on or before July 1 of the given year. The conditions of award can be learned by communicating with the respective chairmen of the committees Professor Claude H. Van Tyne (University of Michigan) as regards the Winsor prize; Professor George Lincoln Burr (Cornell) concerning the Adams prize.
The editors of Poetry (Chicago) will award $250 in one or two prizes for the best poem or poems published in the magazine in its second year, and a prize of $25 for the best epigram.
Rev. Dr. William Hayes Ward has resigned as editor of the Independent, after a service of forty-five years. He will remain a contributing editor, but will no longer go to the office regularly.
August Harold Hedge has relinquishe the editorship of the London Saturday Review, and its chief proprietor, Hon. Gervase Beckett, M. P., has become editor-in-chief, with the assistance of George A. B. Dewar as literary editor.
Our Boys and Girls (New York) has suspended publication.
Munsey's Magazine hereafter will print no serials, but will have in each month's issue a complete book-length novel by a good writer. Mr. Munsey says that the newspapers have usurped the place of the monthly in the presentation of serial stories, that the novel is the great pulling force in periodical publication, and that without it normal circulation would drop perhaps eighty-five per cent.
Petitions in bankruptcy have been filed against the Pulitzer Publishing Company, publisher of the Welcome Guest magazine, No. 225 West Thirty-ninth street, and against the Pulitzer Magazine Company, publisher of Pulitzer's Magazine, No. 1036 Sixth avenue, New York.
Price Collier died on the island of Fünen, in the Baltic Sea, November 3, aged fiftythree.
Mrs. Emily Huntington Miller died November 3 in St. Paul, Minn., aged eighty
Alfred Russel Wallace died in London November 7, aged ninety years.
James Carter Beard died in New Orleans November 16, aged seventy-six.
Sir Robert S. Ball died in Cambridge, England, November 25, aged seventy-three.