Loving Our Language: Indo-European languages and where they come from

As we all write in English, it’s great to find out more about the language in depth! Welcome to a new mini-series here on HTWB by Senior Transcriber Neil Wright – an avid expert on historical linguistics. This week Neill looks at where Indo-European languages come from. Over to Neil…

‘Indo-European’ languages might not sound similar to you, but linguists have scratched their heads over the apparent similarities of the Indo-European languages for centuries. Today, huge swaths of populations covering most of Europe, Asia Minor, and northern India speak languages that are so similar in construct, they must have had a single progenitor tongue.

article about Indo-European languages

Scientists and linguistics are closing in on the true origins of the Indo-European languages. Shown above: the flag representing Indo-European languages. Source: Wikimedia Commons

One of the very first people to draw the dots together was a man named William Jones in 1786. He was serving as a judge in British India at the time. Jones was a well-educated man, and had studied Greek and Latin, as well as English in school. Not long after arriving in India, he began to take an interest in Sanskrit — the language of the ancient religious texts — and wrote the following: [Read more…]

My written communication award … maybe not the Booker Prize, but it’s nice

I was thrilled to get an award this week from the Influential Businesswoman Awards 2020 … much as I don’t like to brag or boast, it is gratifying to get a pat on the head. That’s especially true this year when many of us have had a terrible time with our businesses and have been working extra hard to keep the show on the road.

Suzan St Maur wins award for written communication

And after writing millions of words over my career, and I do mean millions (at a guess I’d say around two million here on HTWB alone), I’m flattered to be considered ‘outstanding.’

As for ‘influential’ I’m not so sure, but I do know that I can make readers laugh! [Read more…]

Working from home: a funny ‘pome’

Fed up with working from home? Fed up with lockdown, even though now that it’s lifting slowly? Are you sure??? Enjoy!

funny poem about lockdown, coronavirus and wokring from home

AFTER LOCKDOWN
The woes of working from home

I wish I weren’t so stuck at home
These walls are too familiar
I’m sick of being here on my own
Sat on my fat posterior.

Those curtains I once thought were great
Of such design seduction
Now make me want to masticate
Puke up my latest luncheon. [Read more…]

How to create a brilliant nonfiction book cover: tutorial

You shouldn’t judge a book by its cover? Oh, yes, you should, because potential readers will. Especially when your book is going to be sold online.

article about how to design good book covers

Janis, The Body and Me book covers: with my sincere thanks to Simon & Schuster for the loan of this brilliant image.

A book’s cover has two jobs to do apart from the obvious one of sharing its title, tagline and author’s name: one, to indicate the book’s ‘genre,’ and two, to show that the book has been professionally designed and produced. Here’s a swift tutorial – both for self-publishing authors and their (hitherto uninitiated) graphic designers…

Is yours going to be a self-published business or self-help book?

[Read more…]

Happy Fête Nationale à la France!

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Greetings to all our French friends and family on your national day. Hope you’re able to celebrate as much as possible in this weird, wicked year of 2020.

celebration of Bastille Day

Happy Bastille Day!

In case you need to, er, refresh your memory of why and what the French celebrate on July 14th, here’s a quick reminder from Wikipedia: [Read more…]

The secrets of a brilliant nonfiction book proposal

Writing a nonfiction book? Want to have a go at getting it published by a traditional publisher like HarperCollins or Simon & Schuster?

Nowadays many traditional publishers accept online submissions for nonfiction, especially for business and self-help titles. With publishers still being a little on the pernickety side you must absolutely following their submission guidelines to the letter.

article on book publishingThe bad news is, each one will have a slightly different set of questions. The good news is, they normally are very like each other.

Here are the main elements of proposal forms that you’re likely to encounter, and how to ring the right bells…

[Read more…]

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