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Holly Erskine

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

No, it’s not a new book by JK Rowling. It’s a recent insight I’ve had trying to understand why some fictional characters immediately trigger my empathy, while others leave me apathetic. Have you ever asked yourself why you can’t finish a book, yet there are others you can’t put down? This question has led me down a tangental yet intriguing road exploring what education researchers call learning mindsets. My thesis here is that exciting characters have what researchers call a growth mindset, while the boring ones have a fixed mindset. I’ll describe these in a bit. But first, let’s talk about writing fiction and creating boring characters!   [Read more...]


Holly Erskine

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

I am about to complain about an anonymous person's behavior, but first, let me express my acute discomfort in making the complaint public. It feels peevish and mean of me considering that this person is extremely caring and thoughtful in a great many ways that I am not.  [Read more...]


Holly Erskine

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Do you enjoy foraging? I do. So do other members of The Emissary cast. In my novelization of the movie, it seemed fitting to cast our hero from outer space as a plant collector, too.   [Read more...]


Holly Erskine

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

The answer, researchers are finding, is helping people at risk for burnout. This research surprised me. Compassion and empathy activate different brain structures.   [Read more...]


Holly Erskine

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Do you hate certain sounds with a passion that you know is unreasonable? You might have misophonia. Greek for hatred of sound, "misophonia" is replacing previous labeling attempts such as Select Sound Sensitivity Syndrome and Sound-Rage.  [Read more...]


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