New Idea – the magazine not a new thought

Posted on 9 August 2010. Filed under: Rant and Rave Time | Tags: , |

I happened to pick up a couple of New Idea from 1977 for a Twitter friend, Jen as I know she’s collecting them and I won’t tell you what she does with them, maybe she’ll explain on her own blog or write me another article about the issue. I happened to glance inside and noticed many differences to the current New Idea so I had a squiz at a new one as well and collated the results.

The current is one actually from last year but it’s current enough. The first thing I noticed is that it’s all in colour while the one from 1977 is mostly in black and white with a few ads in colours, I bet those colour ads cost the earth. In 2009 there were nine articles about famous people and each one was fairly lengthy, going into great detail about what they do, why they’re famous and why they’re in this issue while 1977 only had three articles and some of the articles were about multiple people. Each one only had one article on ordinary people and Mere Male was prevalent in both. Four pages of mindgames in 2009 with none in 1977, four pages of recipes in 2009 and only three in 1977, one page of letters in each issue. Two beauty article in 2009 and only one in 1977. 2009 there were two articles about animals and seven miscellaneous articles while in 1977 there was one article about plants, two craft articles, one about medical issues, one fiction story and an eight page liftout about baby care.

I noticed 1977 has a lot more variety and their word count looks to be higher per article than 2009. They have few pictures and lots of words while 2009 has a large picture with most articles. The articles are also far more people friendly and less sensationalist. In 1977 there was an article about a Federal Minister’s wife balancing her budget which was fairly quiet in tone and very much in the times of a woman being in the home looking after the family while 2009 has an article on a family which has 11 kids under the age of seven, it does mention the size of their shopping list, it’s also very much in today’s language I wouldn’t say the language is sensationalist but it isn’t as laid back as the one from 1977.

It’s very interesting to sit down and read the articles about the famous people. Today’s magazines tend to be a little sensationalist and tend to not put in as much detail as they have so many photos.

It’d be very interesting to have an expert take a magazine or two from each decade and make a proper study of them to see how much things have change. I do think some of the articles from 1977 were much better than today.

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Teaser Tuesdays: Jewels and Ashes – Arnold Zable

Posted on 3 August 2010. Filed under: Teaser Tuesday | Tags: , , , |

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

* Grab your current read
* Open to a random page
* Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
* BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
* Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

The Vistula was a retreat from the tumult, a comfort, full of stillness, such a contrast to what was happening in the bowels of the city. Ferries and barges steamed by, and the vast expanse of water hinted at broad estuaries that meandered into oceans he would one day cross to gain access to a new life.

Jewels and Ashes – Arnold Zable

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The Famous Five Revised

Posted on 30 July 2010. Filed under: Rant and Rave Time | Tags: , , |

It’s been coming up a lot lately for me and I’m really annoyed by the whole idea. They’ve taken childhood classics and revised them to bring them into the modern world. They’ve done this with Nancy Drew, The Hardy Boys and The Three Investigators and are about to do the same with the Famous Five books.

With the Famous Five books they’re taking out all the old phrases such as, ‘mercy me’ and ‘awful’ swotter’. You can see the article Lashings of editing jolly bad for Blyton books and get more details for yourselves. I don’t understand why everything has to be revised and dumbed down. I think it would be better for the child’s understanding of the world to have them exposed to as much as possible and then explain to them what it used to mean and then relate it to a phrase in today’s language rather than just changing the book. I know they want more money and if they can publish another series of books then that equates to a lot of sales, but my personal belief is that it’s better to publish them as they were. I wouldn’t mind if they proofread them properly and edited out the few typos that are there, though.

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Squid Ink Reads The Bible

Posted on 29 July 2010. Filed under: Squid Ink | Tags: , , |

Squid Ink reads The Bible

The Bible is the world’s most read book. I’m sure therefore it is the world’s most discussed book (that is discussed not disgusted, although if a book could speak it might tell us it was disgusted but that’s another story). Squid Ink seems to have the water and the fish, but is missing the loaves. Does it matter if Squid Ink is missing the loaves, does Squid Ink eat bread? I will have to ask the artist.

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Pulp Fiction

Posted on 28 July 2010. Filed under: Pulp Fiction | Tags: , , |

Pulp fiction was of great importance to the working classes. These were people who weren’t earning a lot of money and they couldn’t afford to buy many magazines until pulp fiction arrived. 1896 was when Argosy Magazine was first published, it was published on cheap wood pulp paper as opposed to the glossy magazines which were published on glossy paper. Pulp magazines cost 10c and glossy magazines cost 25c. Published by Frank Munsey they introduced cheap entertainment to the masses.

If you browse this Wikipedia article you can find the names of many magazines which gave so much pleasure to so many. They covered so many different genres including detective, fantasy and science fiction, they were the precursor to the penny dreadfuls and short fiction magazines in the nineteenth century. This wonderful era was phased out during the 1950s due to heavy competition from paperback novels and television.

So many writers got their start writing for pulp magazines. A number of them made a good living from this writing. Edgar Rice Burroughs (John Carter of Mars) was very conscious of the money to be made from writing for the pulps and wrote for maximum financial reward. Max Brand wrote mostly literary westerns under 26 different pen names. Jack London, author of Call to the Wild, was threatening suicide and receiving rejection after rejection when his story was accepted by The Black Cat. Dashiel Hammet was a private detective before becoming a crime writer for the pulps.

Frank Munsey was often quoted as saying ‘the story is more important than the paper it was printed on’. This was a fantastic idea in any age and current publishers could take note and learn much from Frank Munsey. Munsey was ruthless and eager to make money due to an upbringing in poverty, he started magazines and finished them abruptly when they didn’t make money.

I could go on forever, but I’ll come back next week with a little more about the writers.

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Teaser Tuesday: Diggers – Terry Pratchett

Posted on 27 July 2010. Filed under: Teaser Tuesday | Tags: , , |

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

* Grab your current read
* Open to a random page
* Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
* BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
* Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

They saw Jekub roll backwards, change gear with a roar, and attack the truck again. The windows shattered.

Diggers by Terry Pratchett

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Miscellaneous Links

Posted on 26 July 2010. Filed under: Interesting websites | Tags: , , , , |

I came across a few interesting websites last week. This one was sent to me by scifitv on Twitter. I was quite excited about this one, Frederik Pohl is a fabulous author and to have him write about Frank Herbert, my heart just went a flutter and I had to click through to look at it. I was excited even if others aren’t.

This next one was also exciting to me. It’s an article about offenders being given a sentence to read instead of going go prison. I’m lead to believe that one of the problems with offenders is that they’re not very educated and the theory is that they should become educated and they will change. Whether this will work is something I’m not sure of, but I reckon if it gets them reading then it has to be good. This leads me directly to another website. The Australian Prison Foundation is collecting textbooks, dictionaries and novels to send to offenders in Australian prisons to ensure they can educate themselves and change their lives. They’re in need of donations of books and also money so they can send the books to the right places.

This article could be the future of publishing. It’s a fabulous idea and ensures books are chosen by the many and not just for their money making opportunities. I’ll encourage you to look at the article as I can’t begin to explain it properly.

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Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Posted on 22 July 2010. Filed under: Squid Ink | Tags: , , |

Sherlock Holmes Squid Ink Style

The greatest detective, Sherlock Holmes has been parodied and made into so many movies. He stayed at a non-existent address which has since been ‘located’ and created into a shop. I’ve been there and could have had my photo taken with the cap that he supposedly wore.

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Naturally Better – Kristen Morrison

Posted on 21 July 2010. Filed under: Book Reviews | Tags: , , |

I almost didn’t finish this book. Kristen Morrison makes me feel totally inadequate, she is the best mother around and totally puts me to shame. I was feeling incredibly inadequate and depressed about it, but I managed to soldier on and I’m glad I did.

Morrison was a fashion designer and designing a range of women’s wear for pregnant women when the family decided to have another child. Gryffin was born with Down’s Syndrome and Morrison decided to give up her career and spend her time researching the best ways to help him and then putting them all into place. With a loving, but often absent, husband and two very helpful girls, Morrison put together a programme and then put it into action, she continued her research and continued changing the programme as it needed as well as putting together a medical team consisting mostly of alternative approaches to medicine. At the end of the book Gryffin is three and a half and has the outcomes of a normal child for his age; except he can read.

Morrison sent me this book to review and I’d read her website before I agreed to this so I had some idea of what to expect, but while reading the book I was totally taken aback by the enormity of the task she’d set herself. When Gryffin was born there were very few cases of positive outcomes for Down’s Syndrome people, Morrison was told to buy a decent television and ensure Gryffin was comfortable, it’s such a good thing she didn’t listen. She and her mother spent enormous amounts of time on the internet combing through so much chaff to find the wheat. She was not medically trained and had to learn and understand many, many medical terms. She had to learn and understand the programmes she was putting into place and in so many cases she had to devise her own programmes and document them. Gryffin has a regime that would daunt most people and he just meets it all head-on as does the rest of the family. The older girls helped out a lot and their school friends would come around and help fill in the gaps in the programme.

So, that’s the content of the book and the content just blows me away. I don’t think I can say enough nice things about it. Morrison has defined most of the medical terminology she uses, she has written in simple language so anyone can understand what they’ve done and she’s written it all quite simply and in a straightforward manner. She’s given examples of the programmes and detailed the medication/dietary supplements both she and Gryffin took. There is one little problem and that is the editing, it would benefit from a good editor but it’s still quite easy to follow and understand. I can honestly say I understand the problems families with Down’s Syndrome people face far more than I did before.

I’m going to recommend this book for anyone, not just for parents who are faced with the challenges that life holds for those with a Down’s Syndrome baby. I think it’s about time we all learned a bit more respect for these families.

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Teaser Tuesday: Naturally Better – Kristen Morrison

Posted on 20 July 2010. Filed under: Teaser Tuesday | Tags: , |

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

* Grab your current read
* Open to a random page
* Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
* BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
* Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Osteopaths can also correct the alignment of bones in a child’s body to help them grow the way nature intended. I have heard many stories of children who were going to need grommets, but – after Osteopathic (or Chiropractic) treatment, didn’t need them because the fluid in the ear drained away.

Naturally Better: Dramatically improve your child’s life, naturally by Kristen Morrison. I just finished this morning so I’ll review it tomorrow, in the meantime you can be thinking about it.

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