“It’s time to accept that there’s never going to be a perfect sea of endless days when i can write. I will always have other stuff to do. So if that’s the case, then i may as well just get on with it. I don’t want to be one of those people who talks about the book and never actually writes it. It’s time to face up to what’s really going on here – blatant fear of failure. Why do our creative dreams cause us so much angst? – and just start somewhere. Even if i do feel like my days are already full-to-bursting, I can still eek out some time. No more talk; it’s time to put my pen where my mouth is.”
Despite the fact that I actually write a lot — for work, research projects, on my blog, World Pulse, and a dozen other places — sometimes it never feels like it amounts to anything substantial. I have never published a book, although printing my MA thesis did feel like quite the accomplishment. All the research I do for clients is ‘protected’ under NDAs, never to see the light beyond internal boardrooms. Yet, as much as I relate to this observation, I can’t help but think perhaps we’re too hard on ourselves.
A recent article in Seed Magazine describes The Writing Revolution in which we all are now authors. Although their definition of an ‘author’ (someone who has written anything, whether a blog post or Tweet, that has been read by more than 100 people) needs some reworking, the point is that technological changes have enabled us to move from Consumers to Creators. The Seed article is reminiscent of the article We Are All Writers Now. With so many writers and authors running around these days, it’s hard for those of us who consider it our profession to not feel a rising possibility of failure. The quote is spot on with its conclusion. What other solution is there than confronting the creative angst and just getting on with writing?
the3six5 project. 365 days. 365 individual voices writing a collaborative diary to chronicle the year of 2010.
I just received word that I am on board for the project initiated by Len Kendall and Daniel Honigman. On May 28, I will write a 250 word entry about my experiences throughout the day. One day. One person. There are a few famous writers, comedians, TED speakers, etc. in the mix, but for the most part the journal will be crowdsourced by people who just want to write and participate.
A published book is planned, depending on the amount of funding raised. Make a donation at Kickstarter.
About a year ago, I was on a team tasked with redesigning a website for a luxury fitness brand. Abandoning the typical sweaty images for a more spa-like experience, we reworked the content to include testimonials about reaching lifestyle goals, and to feature the gym’s breadth of yoga classes, rather than just their range of free weights. At first glance, the paid ad copy and keyword-rich meta content fit the common search terms: “gym,” “workouts,” and “private trainers.” However, our client didn’t want the typical “gym rat” audience. That’s where a partnership between content strategy and search engine marketing paid off. We revised the site content and search terms to fit the brand of a premium fitness experience. As a result, our client attracted more traffic from an audience eager for their style of gym. The leads were good, but the conversions were even better.
— Margot Bloomstein, The Case for Content Strategy—Motown Style in A List Apart.
Just watched Coffee and Cigarettes last night – finally! And enjoyed seeing this nice photo this morning as I drank my cup (via Something Changed, tiphereth, Rhys Isterix, dutyfreesins).
Last week, a colleague lost all of the data on his phone, including a journal from his holiday in Curaçao, and it made me want to feel my non-digital journals in my hands. As I was flipping through, I came across this drawing, done on the train to Krakow, thinking of the Old Jewish Cemetery in Prague. Two girls, one camera, and over 12,000 tombstones.
A recent New York Times article by Penelope Green looked at the continuing art of letter writing. On customized stationery, to be precise. The effort of writing a sincere letter of gratitude and sending it punctually conjures a bit of nostalgia. Like any one-sided act, this could be quite demoralizing when unrequited. Nevertheless, the beauty of the gesture remains.
“…what are still called ‘social papers’ are thriving, in spite of, or perhaps because of, the prevailing digital culture…Stationery aficionados say the cost is worth it: for the feel of the artisan’s hand — cutting the die, sliding the tissue into the envelope, feeding the printing press — married to the effort of one’s own hand”