Ladies’ Home Journal RIP

Ladies Home JournalAn icon of American publishing and cornerstone of what were once called the “Seven Sisters” of women’s magazines, Ladies’ Home Journal will cease monthly publication in July after 131 years, Ad Age reports.

 

It had a peak circulation of 3.2 million.

 

 
Magazine dies

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13 Kickass Literary Power Couples

It’s common to think of great writers as congenital loners, HuffPost says, “the iconic isolated genius too egotistical or socially inept to have fulfilling personal relationships.” Yet, as HuffPost went on, literary-minded people tend to be drawn to each other and these pairings sometimes result in even greater artistic productivity.

These 13 couples, though not always personally stable or successful, likely produced even better work due to their unions:

Orlovsky, Ginsberg, And WaldmanAllen Ginsberg and Peter Orlovsky:

Allen Ginsberg, a celebrated poet and leading member of the Beat Generation, met Peter Orlovsky in 1954. The two fell in love and remained partners until Ginsberg’s death in 1997. Ginsberg rose to fame in the mid-’50s with the publication of his seminal work “Howl,” a poem deemed obscene at the time due to its rough language but also celebrated by critics for its virtuosity. Meanwhile, Ginsberg urged Orlovsky, who had considered himself a poet, to begin writing. While he never became a literary powerhouse on the level of Ginsberg, he went on to publish his work and receive grant money for his poetry projects. These two writers were central to the Beat movement that altered the course of American literature. Their sometimes-rocky relationship was open to allow affairs with other men and women, but their bond to each other held through over 40 years of what both considered to be a marriage.

Literary couples

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An American Odyssey

First color postcards of the ‘New World’ showcase life in the US at the end of the 19th century. The photographs were taken between 1888 and 1924 and were made into postcards celebrating cities, landscapes and everyday life across the country, Sarah Gordon reports in Mail Online.

The images were produced by the Detroit Photographic Company and will be available in a rather pricey book published by Taschen for £135.

Photos include laundry day in New York, a Seminole Indian family sailing in their dugout canoes in Florida, and San Francisco when it was a pup.

San FranciscoGold rush town: A glorious panorama shows the Californian city of San Francisco when it was still a relatively small settlement

Laundry DayLaundry day: This unusual picture shows a Monday in New York City, when the streets were filled with clean washing being aired among the buildings

Color postcards

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30 Writers’ Invaluable Advice to Graduates

Graduation season is fast approaching, Elisabeth Donnelly notes at Flavorwire, the time of the year when many writers are tasked with summing up the lessons learned in ten succinct minutes of witty truth.

These days, a successful graduation speech has the very real chance of going viral, and then living forever as a book: from David Foster Wallace’s This Is Water: Some Thoughts, Delivered on a Significant Occasion, About Living a Compassionate Life to Neil Gaiman’s Make Good Art, the best graduation speeches are finding a new life.

This crop includes the brand new Congratulations, By the Way: Some Thoughts on Kindness by noted author George Saunders, a pretty-in-print encapsulation of his 2013 Syracuse Graduation speech on “kindness.”

It’s reason enough to collect 30 of the best, wisest, and pithiest pieces of advice from the greatest writers to attempt the graduation speech. Here are some of our favorites (and yes, Wallace, Gaiman, and Saunders are included).

Watterson & CalvinBill Watterson, Kenyon College, 1990

“If I’ve learned one thing from being a cartoonist, it’s how important playing is to creativity and happiness. My job is essentially to come up with 365 ideas a year. If you ever want to find out just how uninteresting you really are, get a job where the quality and frequency of your thoughts determine your livelihood. I’ve found that the only way I can keep writing every day, year after year, is to let my mind wander into new territories. To do that, I’ve had to cultivate a kind of mental playfulness.”

Writers advice to graduates

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36 Unexpected Origins Of Everyday English Phrases…

…according to BuzzFeed staffer Daniel Dalton.

brass ballsJeff Carpenter / Shutterstock

That’s probably very cold indeed. This one, like many of the more colouful English phrases, has a Naval origin.

On 18th-century men-of-war ships, the brass trays used to hold the cannonballs became known as the brass monkeys – named after powder monkey, an affectionate name for the young boys who carried gunpowder around the ship.

These trays had 16 cannonball-sized indentations that would form the base of a cannonball pyramid, and were made from brass so the balls did not stick, as they did on iron. The drawback was that brass contracts much faster in cold weather than iron. This meant that on severely cold days the indentations holding the lower level of cannonballs would contract, spilling the pyramid over the deck. Hence ‘cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey’.

Go with the FlowAndre Nantel / Shutterstock

Meaning to put objections aside and follow the majority, the phrase is often thought to be of American origin, but is in fact Roman. Marcus Aurelius was crowned Emperor of Rome on 7 March 161. During a turbulent reign beset by war, Marcus dealt with his turmoil through intellectual thought and philosophy, much of which is expressed in his writings The Meditations.

Marcus’s philosophy is based around the flow of thought and the flow of happiness, and led him to conclude that ‘all things flow naturally’, and that it was better to ‘go with the flow’ rather than try to change the natural course of events.

Where it came from

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Quote of the Day

Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counsellors, and the most patient of teachers.” ~ Charles William Eliot

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Alma Alexander
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