Freelance publisher Shawn Blanc has an encouraging post about motivation for all writers: Doubt is Torture
He draws on Writing Down the Bones, by Natalie Goldberg, from 1986, and shows how her advice to poets applies to writing web posts and constructing wikis. Shawn’s connection: The weblog gives you that extra push needed to overcome doubt.
I am amazed at how many people consider themselves a writer, or who hope to become one, and weblogs have done something that journals never did. They’ve given an extra push of motivation to those people who always wanted to write, but never did.
Unfortunately, it seems the same motivation which encourages us to publish, also feeds those voice of self-doubt that Natalie talks about. I don’t know how many posts I’ve started and deleted because I thought they weren’t relevant or exciting or interesting enough. Which is why I love this sentence so much: “Instead, have a tenderness and determination toward your writing, a sense of humor and a deep patience that you are doing the right thing. Avoid getting caught by that small gnawing mouse of doubt.”
Nice connection. The kind of writing is not relevant here. Tech writers, article writers, journalists, grant writers, freelancers suffer the same self-doubt as poets and essayists, and the weblog gives them all a space to practice patience, to chase out the mouse.
Both the book and Shawn’s blog are worth a read.
Filed under News, Weblogs
Style guides like this show up with every new mode of exchange, but they are often worth looking at – just to see how users view the mode.
The Anatomy of a Tweet: Twitter Gets a Style Guide – Bits Blog – NYTimes.com
The bulk of the book, titled “140 Characters, A Style Guide for the Short Form,” will revolve around eight key lessons from the Twitter universe, such as the importance of simplicity, honesty and humor. The project will also highlight notable figures worth following on Twitter, anecdotes from the community and even examples of the few occasions Twitterers have gone overboard: For example, Mr. Sagolla points to “bathroom tweets,” or messages about bodily functions, as falling into the category of things not to post to Twitter.
“This is a new genre of writing,” said Mr. Sagolla. “A new form of literature, in some ways.”
What’s interesting is that the authors are publising the book as a PDF and an iPhone app. A print version is low on the list.
How many times have I heard this?
Sure Weblogs and Wikis is incredibly fascinating and the book is really intriguing and this really is the best course I’ve ever taken. Ever. But what do I do with the knowledge and expertise I’ve gained?
BSU English Lit and CPW alums have formed an online publishing consortium at http://www.stpaulmedia.com/. Editor-in-Chief Jonathan Hatch has been developing how to web sites How to Get Rid of Things and How to Clean Things since he graduated a few years ago.
Hatch, and most of the contributers, took Weblogs and Wikis and other courses in the BSU E-Rhetoric minor.
You might want to have a look at what they’re up to.
Information Architects » Blog Archive » The Age of Digital Baroque
Twitter, Flickr, Facebook make blogs look so 2004
It ain’t over, but blogs have grown up, and writing for multi-site mashup is a newish trend. Pull together Twitter with Flickr and Britekite, linked to Facebook, and the blog.
Pay Matt’s blog a visit. It’ll be worth your time.
Matt Thommes / matthom