World Wide Web: The Breath of Life

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This month we bring you an edited version of Charlotte Wood's keynote speech to the Residential Editorial Program at Varuna, delivered on 5 May 2014. Charlotte discussed the process of working with her editors on her four novels, and identified four qualities of great editing: generosity, humility, imaginative courage and the elusive 'breath of life'.

I know, from that long-ago copy edit, how what might appear to be a heavy editorial hand can in fact untether a work from the burden of its own prose, softly and steadily unclipping the moorings, removing weight, so that in the end the writing is indeed set free. And yet, at the same time, one does need to intuit when to step back, and let a work move in its own loose and lovely way. To recognise when the breath of life is already present, and where there may be danger of suffocation with rules and pedantry.


We also bring you a fascinating collection of articles and websites sent to us by the wonderful Janet Mackenzie:

On the literary skills of hip-hop artists:

A new way of obtaining ebooks: and

University Presses Under Fire: