Roald Dahl

20 Great Writers on the Art of Revision

It’s a new year, and hopeful souls around the world are working diligently on their plans to revise — their health, their attitudes, their lives. But who knows more about the art of revision than great writers? Prepare to be… Read More

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10 Great Authors We Should All Stop Pigeonholing

This week, we read a great article at Slate about Ursula K. Le Guin and the genre distinctions (or lack thereof) in her work. This article portends an even greater event, the publication of Le Guin’s new self-chosen best-of collection, The Unreal and the Real, later this month, so we’ve decided to take a look at Le Guin and other authors who have found themselves neatly boxed and categorized by the collective consciousness — but shouldn’t be. Click through to check out a few great authors we should all really stop pigeonholing, and if we’ve missed one, add to our list in the comments! … Read More

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The Seven Deadly Sins in Literature

Today marks the release of Jami Attenberg’s The Middlesteins, a portrait of a woman obsessed with food and the efforts (or non-efforts) of her family to get her eating under control. We can say pretty confidently that the book made us never want to overeat again, and we got to thinking about the other books that make us want to give up our vices. After all, any sin you can dream up has probably been written about, usually by someone French. After the jump, find examples of the seven deadly sins in literature (whether actually deadly or just unfortunate). Indulge in a little naughtiness-by-proxy, and then let us know which sinful characters we missed in the comments. … Read More

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Literature’s Greatest Author and Illustrator Duos

Some of our favorite book illustrations have become just as near and dear to our hearts as the stories themselves. What would Winnie-the-Pooh be in our minds without those beautiful drawings of the pleasantly rotund, honey-colored bear? The best illustrator and author collaborations make the text inseparable from the images, to the point where we cannot picture the stories without the pictures, or vice versa. To honor the magical relationship that takes place when the right writer and artist meet, we have rounded up some of our favorite author and illustrator duos of all time after the jump.  … Read More

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10 Fictional Schools That We’d Love to Attend

We’re huge fans of the campus novel, and this morning we’re adding another great one to our collection: Don Lee’s The Collective, which hits shelves today. The novel, which follows a group of young artists during and after college, got us thinking about all the wonderful houses of learning from books that we wish we could have attended — from grade schools to high schools to college. Though The Collective is set at a real-life school, Macalester College, we’ve narrowed our choices to fictional schools (though some of them may bear more than a passing resemblance to extant houses of learning) to make it a little more fun. Click through to read about ten literary schools where we’d love to study, and let us know where you’d go if you had the chance in the comments. … Read More

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A Collection of Brilliant and Inspiring Letters From Famous Authors to Their Young Fans

Earlier this week, we pointed you towards a fantastic letter from Robert Louis Stevenson to a little girl, posted over at Letters of Note, wherein he bequeathed her his birthday. Though we are guilty of being fond of literary ephemera in all of its forms, we have to say that we particularly love reading letters written by authors and sent to their young fans, whether they consist of advice, encouragement, or just gratitude. We think something about the way an author writes to a child is very telling, and even more than that, we know how much of an impact such letters probably had on their recipients, a thought that fills us with warm goodness. Click through to see our small collection of inspiring, cheeky, and lovely letters from famous authors to their young fans — you might just find that they work just as well for kids of all ages. … Read More

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10 Important Life Lessons We Learned from Children’s Books

This week, one of our favorite children’s book authors and illustrators of all time, Chris Van Allsburg, turned 63. Allsburg’s books were formative literature for us as children, so to celebrate the author’s birthday, we were inspired to think about all the life lessons we learned from children’s books — both picture books and early chapter books — that still stick with us. After all, the things you absorb at a young age can form the foundation for the person you will become, so we think it’s nice to look back and see if we can trace our morality to an evil French dentist and his dog. Click through for some of the life lessons we learned from our favorite children’s books — and let us know which morals you’ve held onto in the comments. … Read More

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10 Wonderful Short Films Based on Famous Short Stories

Here at Flavorpill, we’re total suckers for short stories — in any form. The idea of short stories being used as source material for films — even feature films — is nothing new (hello, Brokeback Mountain), but this week, PWxyz pointed us towards a gorgeous short film we had never seen before, based on one of our favorite short stories, Franz Kafka’s “A Country Doctor.” Inspired, we dug up a few more wonderful short films based on short stories, both professional and amateur, which could serve either to accent your understanding of a story, or, you know, let you off easy. After all, there’s nothing lower-effort than kicking back and watching videos online. Even if they’re literary. Click through to check out the films, and let us know which short story you’d love to see in short film form in the comments. … Read More

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Literary Mixtape: Willy Wonka

If you’ve ever wondered what your favorite literary characters might be listening to while they save the world/contemplate existence/get into trouble, or hallucinated a soundtrack to go along with your favorite novels, well, us too. But wonder no more! Here, we sneak a look at the hypothetical iPods of some of literature’s most interesting characters. What would be on the personal playlists of Holden Caulfield or Elizabeth Bennett, Huck Finn or Harry Potter, Tintin or Humbert Humbert? Something revealing, we bet. Or at least something danceable. Read on for a cozy reading soundtrack, character study, or yet another way to emulate your favorite literary hero. This week: Roald Dahl’s most flamboyant factory owner, Willy Wonka. … Read More

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The Fictional 99%: 10 of Pop Culture's Poorest Characters

Earlier this week, Forbes released its annual list of the 15 richest fictional characters, topped by Tolkien’s legendary dragon Smaug and featuring other one percenters like Tywin Lannister, Tony Stark and Robert Crawley. Well, that’s all very well and good, but the list got us to thinking about the other end of the stick — the poorest fictional characters across pop culture, from street urchins to hobos to a very special monster who lives in a trash can. Click through to check out our list, and since we obviously couldn’t hit them all, let us know if we’ve missed your favorite impoverished fictional figure in the comments. … Read More

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