September 3

Birthdays: Sarah Orne Jewett (1849), Aliki (1929), Adriana Trigiani (1969), Alison Lurie (1926), Jenny Han (1980), Kiran Desai (1971), Lawrence Clark Powell (1906), Malcolm Gladwell (1963)

Tip: Dangling modifiers: modifiers are words or phrases that enhance other words in a sentence. If you misplace them (dangling), you can change the meaning of a sentence, or make it impossible as in: “Carrying the box, the leaves blew across his path.” In this case, it sounds like the leaves are doing the carrying. Much better: As he carried the box, the leaves blew across his path. Or: The leaves blew across his path as he carried the box.

Thought for the day: “You can’t write well with only the nice parts of your character, and only about nice things. And I don’t want even to try anymore. I want to use everything, including hate and envy and lust and fear.” – Alison Lurie

Jumpstart: You’re going to be on a reality show—one that’s never been seen before. What will it be? What will the challenges be? What is the prize? Why are you doing this?