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Writing

Random bullets of the book project

The thing about writing a book (and it feels like “writing a book” now, even though the phase I’m in at the moment is revising an article that will eventually become a chapter) is that it leaves virtually no writing-brain left for blogging. Everything’s getting channeled into the larger project, even if it’s just 15 […]

AcWriMo: some reflections

So now it’s December, and AcWriMo has come and gone. How did it work out? Here are some thoughts: I wrote just over 13,000 words in 30 days. Which is not bad at all, considering that I set a relatively modest goal (half an hour every day). I didn’t write quite every day in November […]

AcWriMo: Throwing my hat into the ring.

I got wind of AcWriMo (the academic-writing answer to NaNoWriMo) just as I was starting to think “Okay, now that the Potential Book Project has a good chance of turning into my Tenure Book Project, I should start making time to work on it.” It’s high time I got back into the daily writing habit, […]

Committing to a few projects

It seems to help me move new projects from the “maybe” stage in my head (a.k.a. the “brain crack” stage, to borrow Ze Frank’s unforgettable terminology) to the “out into the world” stage if I say, in public, that I’m going to do them. This doesn’t always work — my NoNaShoStoWriMo project fizzled out, for […]

A cairn of small stones

Inspired by friends in the blogosphere, I’ve been participating in the January 2012 River of Stones project. The idea is that every day you write a short burst of prose, some sort of observation of the world, and then either blog it or tweet it. I’ve been confining mine to less than 140 characters so […]

Random Bullets of Ghostliness

‘Tis the season, not just for a deluge of forced consumerism and overplayed Christmas music in every public space, but for cold and darkness and, traditionally, for sitting around the fire and scaring the living daylights out of each other with creepy stories. And since supernatural things have been on my mind a lot lately (I […]

In praise of 750 Words

Thanks to a post about it on the excellent blog ProfHacker, I've become a big fan of the freewriting site 750words.com. It's a godsend for people like me who want to write more but have a hard time getting started or getting motivated. You log in and it gives you a blank screen and a […]

Stories I may or may not write someday

Lately I seem to have fallen back into no-blog-land even as my writing brain has been kicking out ideas right and left and every which way. There’s the Material Cultures paper, for which I have so many things to say that I can already tell it’ll be a struggle keeping it under the 20-minute mark. […]

The Slow Food approach to scholarship

Reading Anthony Grafton’s recent NYRB blog post on the impact of budget cuts on British universities (and especially the paleography program at King’s College London), I was struck by the following paragraph: There was a Slow Food feel to British university life, based on a consensus that people should take the time to make an article or a […]

Writing projects: update and non-update

So. Instead of being Insanely Productive Writing Month, November has turned into a cage match between my NoNaShoStoWriMo story and my embryonic Material Cultures paper project. The latter has been winning; the former is stalled out and sitting forlornly on my hard drive, waiting for a month when I can give it my undivided attention. […]