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Digital Subscriptions > Writing Magazine > July 2018 > Welcome.



Dear Reader

In any magazine office, flick your pen and you will more than likely hit a word-lover, or at least somebody who spends a good deal of their time thinking about words. Perhaps, given our speciality, at Writing Magazine more than most. As a result, we were waylaid by a reader’s letter this month, in the best possible way. Our correspondent highlighted a perennial purists’ correction: decimate. As I’m sure most of you know, decimate comes from Roman times, defining a workaround to punish a group, eg a legion, without severely diminishing its number. So every tenth legionary could be executed, or imprisoned, leaving nine to soldier on. Now, the term is widely used much more loosely, to mean much or most of. Purist sub-editors maintain that the modern meaning should be avoided completely (and perhaps, in print, we might look for an alternative) but in practice, that would lead to a term that people obviously like to use falling out of use: beyond Roman military history there isn’t much call for a word that means ‘destroy precisely 10% of something’.

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About Writing Magazine

How can you get your writing to the readers it deserves? In this month's issue of Writing Magazine we look at how to generate new freelance opportunities and how and why the flourishing independent press scene may be your best bet. First though, if you're a new writer you need to read our guide to finding and fixing those rookie mistakes in How Not to Be a Bad Writer. This month's star interview is the man with the golden pen Anthony Horowitz, talking about bringing back Bond and maintaining his impressive hit rate. Keep up to date with all the latest competitions and opportunities to get into print with Writers' News – there's £37,240 in writing prizes to be won!