Tag Archives: research

Cara Black (b. November 14): “I’m an eavesdropper” & other quotes on writing

14 Nov
black

pinterest.com/pin/39406565465150740/

Cara Black, born 14 November 1951, is a best-selling American mystery writer best known for her Aimée Léduc novels featuring a female Paris-based private investigator.

Quotes on writing:

  1. Write what you are passionate about – that’s the best advice I ever received.
  2. I wanted to tell a story. Crime fiction is a great framework, a structure to hang a story.
  3. Research is the BEST part of my job. It means I must go to Paris, as I tell my husband.
  4. I’m an eavesdropper, bad habit, but invaluable in my line of work. I think writers do that all the time. 
  5. The past informs the present. Memory makes the map we carry, no matter how hard we try to erase it.
  6. To me a gripping story is about the characters, how crime impacts them; the victim’s world and forensics and technology are tools. 
  7. Maybe mysteries help us deal with the frustration and unresolved situations we encounter in daily life. When I read a mystery I like to experience some sense that justice is served. Not that all the loose ends are tied up but that good in some form triumphs.
  8. A line of dialogue or a mannerism can put a character onto the page. The challenge is to keep the character speaking more dialogue, being memorable and intrinsic to the plot and storyline. Especially in crime fiction and mysteries, everything happens for a reason, every detail could be a clue, a red herring, a false lead or a key to a sub plot and a suspect.
  9. I like to think that Paris is a character in my books. Sense of place, that unique part of Paris that speaks to me drives the story. Paris is really a collection of villages, twenty arrondissements or districts that each have a flavour. I try to think why crime would occur here in this quartier of Paris, what crime would happen here, who lives here, what is the distinct taste of this quartier of Paris and then the story comes
  10. My writing group meets twice a month and we critique each other’s work in progress. I’m an equal member and receive comments like everyone else. I’m always looking to make my story better. It’s important to listen to the comments, take what makes sense or would make the story clearer, deepen or enhance it. Or even delve more into the character, strengthen what would be more organic to the plot. If several people make the same comments, I listen.

 

Martin Cruz Smith (b. November 3): “The research is the most interesting part…”

3 Nov

cruz_smith

“The research is the most interesting part… That’s how I work. I go some place and I walk it and I talk to people until I find what I’ve come for. Or not. Fortunately, I tend to find what I’m after.”

~ Martin Cruz Smith, b. 3 November 1942

pinterest.com/pin/39406565463070165/

 

Dr Cowgirl will join you soon. Please assume the position.

3 Oct

lab sex - cropSex and back pain 

People with back pain are known for their grouchiness, and it is not helped if they are also starved for sex. Although sex makes serious demands on the spine, no one has taken the time to study how different sexual positions can accommo­date different back problems.

But Stuart McGill and Natalie Si­dorkewicz of the University of Waterloo in Canada rose to the challenge. They brought ten heterosexual couples with healthy spines into the lab and asked them to have sex using five randomly assigned intercourse positions.

These included two variations of the “missionary” position, where the man is on top of the woman and facing her; two variations of the “doggy” position, where the man is behind the woman on all-fours, and the “spoon”, which involves both participants lying cupped together on their sides. The last of these is often recommended by family doctors as the safest for sore backs.

missionary sex - cropMost back problems in younger folk are triggered by bending forward, a movement called flexion. But as people age, reaching up and back, known as extension, becomes a more common cause. The researchers wanted to see how various sexual positions differ­entially taxed the spine, so people would know what to avoid.

They used eight infra-red motion‑capture cameras to track the movements of reflective dots placed strategically on the participants’ bodies. The cameras monitored the movements for 20 sec­onds of sex in each position.

doggy sex - cropVolunteers were then observed while standing straight, bending forward, extending backwards, bending to each side and twisting at the waist. This was to establish their maximum range of motion, so that the strain involved in each sex position could be calculated.

When the data were crunched, the researchers found that – contrary to pop­ular belief – spooning was not a good idea for men with bending-induced lower back pain. Nor was a variant of the missionary position with the man supporting himself on his elbows.

durex - cropHolding himself up with his arms extended was a more spine-sparing option, along with one of the doggy variants. For men whose back problems are made worse by extending up and back, the opposite was true. A separate study on women with back problems is nearly complete.

The research, published in Spine, will be developed into a fuller guide to sexual positions. The team plans to study other options, such as the man lying on his back (the “cowgirl”). People with back pain find ways to do all sorts of activities, says Dr McGill, and sex should be no different. But five positions in one session is pretty arduous, he points out. “You can only do so many.”

~ courtesy The Economist, 13 September 2014

Cara Black (b. November 14): “I’m an eavesdropper” & other quotes on writing

14 Nov
black

pinterest.com/pin/39406565465150740/

Cara Black, born 14 November 1951, is a best-selling American mystery writer best known for her Aimée Léduc novels featuring a female Paris-based private investigator.

Quotes on writing:

  1. Write what you are passionate about – that’s the best advice I ever received.
  2. I wanted to tell a story. Crime fiction is a great framework, a structure to hang a story.
  3. Research is the BEST part of my job. It means I must go to Paris, as I tell my husband.
  4. I’m an eavesdropper, bad habit, but invaluable in my line of work. I think writers do that all the time. 
  5. The past informs the present. Memory makes the map we carry, no matter how hard we try to erase it.
  6. To me a gripping story is about the characters, how crime impacts them; the victim’s world and forensics and technology are tools. 
  7. Maybe mysteries help us deal with the frustration and unresolved situations we encounter in daily life. When I read a mystery I like to experience some sense that justice is served. Not that all the loose ends are tied up but that good in some form triumphs.
  8. A line of dialogue or a mannerism can put a character onto the page. The challenge is to keep the character speaking more dialogue, being memorable and intrinsic to the plot and storyline. Especially in crime fiction and mysteries, everything happens for a reason, every detail could be a clue, a red herring, a false lead or a key to a sub plot and a suspect.
  9. I like to think that Paris is a character in my books. Sense of place, that unique part of Paris that speaks to me drives the story. Paris is really a collection of villages, twenty arrondissements or districts that each have a flavour. I try to think why crime would occur here in this quartier of Paris, what crime would happen here, who lives here, what is the distinct taste of this quartier of Paris and then the story comes
  10. My writing group meets twice a month and we critique each other’s work in progress. I’m an equal member and receive comments like everyone else. I’m always looking to make my story better. It’s important to listen to the comments, take what makes sense or would make the story clearer, deepen or enhance it. Or even delve more into the character, strengthen what would be more organic to the plot. If several people make the same comments, I listen.

 

Martin Cruz Smith (b. November 3): “The research is the most interesting part…”

3 Nov

cruz_smith

“The research is the most interesting part… That’s how I work. I go some place and I walk it and I talk to people until I find what I’ve come for. Or not. Fortunately, I tend to find what I’m after.”

~ Martin Cruz Smith, b. 3 November 1942

http://www.pinterest.com/pin/39406565463070165/

 

Martin Cruz Smith (b.Nov 3): “The research is the most interesting part…”

3 Nov

cruz_smith

“The research is the most interesting part… That’s how I work. I go some place and I walk it and I talk to people until I find what I’ve come for. Or not. Fortunately, I tend to find what I’m after.”

~ Martin Cruz Smith, b. 3 November 1942

http://www.pinterest.com/pin/39406565463070165/

 

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