Archive for Esthetics

Bad sex writing: really really bad

I'm pleased to be able to announce on Language Log the winner of the Literary Review's 2015 Bad Sex in Fiction Award. The award went to the singer Morrissey for his debut novel List of the Lost. And it seems to have been honestly earned. The judges cited this sentence:

Eliza and Ezra rolled together into the one giggling snowball of full-figured copulation, screaming and shouting as they playfully bit and pulled at each other in a dangerous and clamorous rollercoaster coil of sexually violent rotation with Eliza's breasts barrel-rolled across Ezra's howling mouth and the pained frenzy of his bulbous salutation extenuating his excitement as it whacked and smacked its way into every muscle of Eliza's body except for the otherwise central zone.

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Too much Victor Mair

I've been reading way too much Victor Mair. In the restaurant of my hotel in London I just saw an English girl wearing a T-shirt on which it said this:


H O
P E

And I immediately thought, who is Ho Pe?

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The esthetics of East Asian writing

[This is a guest post by S. Robert Ramsey.  It is essentially an extended reply to two comments by Joanne Salton [here and here] to my post on "The cost of illiteracy in China".  While I have the floor, I would like to point out the remarks by Ray Dillinger (with important qualifications by Julie Lee) which, considering the limited compass, are among the most sensible observations on the history of writing I've ever encountered.  And now the floor is Bob's.]

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