The History of English in 10 Minutes – OU animation

I’m pleased to have found this amusing summary of the history of English, re-tweeted by The Book Bench, on twitter. It is 11:20 long, so get a cup of tea and settle in for a bit of an educational session from the OU.

(And if you want a much longer version, in book form, there’s alway Melvyn Bragg’s The Adventure of English.)

The joy of books – watch them dance!

Another book-related animation to gladden the heart. It is a perfect excuse for posting something and also announcing my resolution to buy most of my books from physical – maybe even local! – book shops this year. (Sorry Amazon, but they need my support.) Enjoy the dancing books.

The film was made by the owners of a bookshop in Toronto. I saw it on Twitter earlier today, where a Colossal post featuring it did the rounds. Can you imagine the amount of work it took to record it? All those books, organised, photographed and re-organised.

Merry Christmas!

‘Tis the season to read and, I hope, to write. While I’m off doing those two things, not much will happen here (except the weekly updates for Fiction Friday). To share some joy, here’s a film made, so the rumour says, by the same person who made and left a series of wonderful book sculptures around Edinburgh this year.

(See pictures of the book sculptures and read more about them.)

A Book For Xmas from a book for xmas on Vimeo.

Name the novels in the short film – or enjoy it because it is pretty

As part of their books season 2011, The Guardian and Observer are running a competition where you can win a Kindle and the six novels in their animated film. The film gives first lines and you guess (or know) the book. It’s a very nice little film with some clever little clues (some more subtle than others) in the way the titles are presented. I’m sharing it not because it’s a fabulous competition but because I really like the film.

The competition is open until November 6th.

So you want to write a novel – the animated short film

I really like this little film about what it takes to write and get published. The writer character feels frighteningly real.

My favourite bit comes at around 2:58. “How many editors do you think Random House will assign to my book? Because it will need a lot of editing. I’m not the best speller.” Watching it is 4:38 minutes well spent.