If somebody asked you for tips on becoming a better writer, what would you tell them?
“First, when you have a good structural idea, or a good turn of phrase comes to you, note it down immediately — even if you are falling asleep, or in the shower. You think you’ll remember it later, but you won’t, and when inspiration strikes you need to make the most of it, because it doesn’t happen often. Second, and I know this is a cliche, but writing really is rewriting. The aim is to make it look smooth and effortless, even though it usually isn’t. So get something down, and then go back over it, again and again.”
I follow a lot of people, and lately I have been concerned that excellent female bloggers, journos and researchers whose work I want to see are getting lost in the noise.
To make sure I see them — and also make sure others do too — I’ve created a “Women Worth RT-ing” list.
I usually keep my Twitter lists private, but I have made this one public, so others can copy/follow too. Find it at:
My rough rules:
- No marketers, even if I love you. You have your own channels.
- If you work for a very big media outlet, you probably don’t need this list either — but if you want to argue with me about that, email me.
- If we’re friends/followers and I somehow missed you, DM or email me.
- If you’d like to be on it, follow me so I can be aware of your work.
In the Tamms supermax prison in Illinois, prisoners are held in permanent solitary confinement, 24/7. The “Photo Requests from Solitary” project seeks to alleviate their mentally crippling isolation by recruiting photographers and everyday people to take photos that these men (they are almost all men) can hang on their walls. If you are disposed to help, the photo requests are posted on this page.
Douglas Rushkoff :
I don’t believe in writer’s block. Yes, there may have been days or even weeks at a time when I have not written — even when I may have wanted to — but that doesn’t mean I was blocked. It simply means I was in the wrong place at the wrong time. Or, as I’d like to argue, exactly the right place at the right time.
The creative process has more than one kind of expression. There’s the part you could show in a movie montage — the furious typing or painting or equation solving where the writer, artist, or mathematician accomplishes the output of the creative task. But then there’s also the part that happens invisibly, under the surface. That’s when the senses are perceiving the world, the mind and heart are thrown into some sort of dissonance, and the soul chooses to respond.
That response doesn’t just come out like vomit after a bad meal. There’s not such thing as pure expression. Rather, because we live in a social world with other people whose perceptual apparatus needs to be penetrated with our ideas, we must formulate, strategize, order, and then articulate. It is that last part that is visible as output or progress, but it only represents, at best, 25 percent of the process.
Real creativity transcends time. If you are not producing work, then chances are you have fallen into the infinite space between the ticks of the clock where reality is created. Don’t let some capitalist taskmaster tell you otherwise — even if he happens to be in your own head.” —Douglas Rushkoff on creativity and breaking through creative blocks (via explore-blog)
A student journalist at Bryan College, a conservative Christian institution in Tennessee, apparently is being pressured by his school’s administration to back down on accurate reporting regarding a faculty member.
The story is being covered by long-time media scrutinizer Jim Romenesko on his blog.
The original post, detailing how the student uncovered that the inappropriate circumstances behind a professor’s departure were concealed, is here. Briefly, the student wrote a story for the campus paper using public records, the administration spiked it, and the student distributed it anyway.
The follow-up, detailing that the student was pressured to ask for the post to be taken down, and may be censured by the school, which has misrepresented his reporting, is here.
It is important to note that the student, Alex Green, represents himself as a Bible-believing Christian in tune with his school’s overall values. It is out of those values, he said in the original post, that he stood up for the truth being told about the professor’s behavior.
If you disagree with the journalist’s treatment by his college, and the concealment of misbehavior by a professor, please consider contacting the college:
Bryan College, Dayton TN: http://www.bryan.edu
College president: Stephen Livesay
- on the college site
- on LinkedIn
Update: Here is a post by a mom in the college community, verifying Romenesko’s reporting and objecting to the censorship.
from Jason Konopinski: Develop The Discipline & Do The Work | Jason Konopinski - Write. Think. Do.