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Posts Tagged ‘William Safire’

Literary Publicity Firm Precedent Media Unlimited to Close

precedent.jpgOnline literary publicist Jason Gordon has decided to close the publicity firm he founded, Precedent Media Unlimited.

“For over three years, I have worked hard to make sure that Precedent Media delivered the most thorough and progressive online campaigns. It has been an honor to work with so many great authors and publishing houses,” he explained in an emailed statement. Asked about future plans he said he is “exploring options and can be contacted [via email].”

At Precedent, Gordon handled publicity campaigns for bestselling authors like Nick Hornby and John Grisham. Before founding his own firm, Gordon served stints at Crown Publishing Group and Oxford University Press. In those positions, he worked campaigns for writers that included then-Senator Barack Obama, rock star Gene Simmons, and journalist William Safire.

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Celebrating William Safire’s Precision

MateaGold.jpgAs the literary world reflects on the legacy of William Safire, one LA Times reporter measured his work against the writing style of a 21st Century conservative icon–Glenn Beck.

Today’s guest on the Morning Media Menu was Matea Gold, the television media reporter for the LA Times. She discussed how Beck’s work lacked the same commitment to precision that made Safire’s work great.

Here’s an excerpt: “Safire had this obsession with the precision of language that I think was very admirable. I think Beck uses language more loosely. You see him throwing around a lot of words like ‘Communism’ and ‘radicalism,’ it creates a lot of fear around a subject without a precise connection to that subject.”

William Safire Has Died

438-1.jpgProlific author, columnist, and speechwriter William Safire passed away yesterday after a battle with cancer.

His career began as a speechwriter for Richard Nixon, and he earned a Pulitzer Prize for his political commentary. During his long career, Safire (pictured via Fred R. Conrad) wrote both fiction and nonfiction, including the novel “Full Disclosure” and the Nixon-era memoir, “Before the Fall.” In addition to these books, he wrote political columns and the popular “On Language” column for the NY Times–a handy guide for writers over the years.

Here’s a passage from his September 11th “On Language” column, a look at writerly abuse of the phrase, ‘bend the curve‘: “the meaning of the phrase bending the curve is switching from ‘bend that awful, upward-curving line down before we can’t afford an aspirin’ to ‘bend that line up down quick, before we all head for the bread line!’ This leads to metaphoric confusion. It’s what happens when you fall in love with full-color graphs to explain to the screen-entranced set what’s happening and scorn plain words.”