keyboardsanddarkness asked: Hope I'm not late on the office hours. Hi! My question is this: how do you balance being active online, working on your projects and marketing already-finished projects? As a writer trying to be more public(ish), I feel like I'm floundering as I try to find myself in all those pop words like brand and platform and "interact with your fans!" and so on and so forth.
Forget about that shit. Show your work.
What you do online should be in the middle of a venn diagram between what’s helpful and/or interesting to you and what’s helpful and/or interesting to others.
For example: I use this Tumblr as a way to keep track of stuff I’m interested in, and research I’m doing. But I SHARE it in a way that might be interesting to other people. So what I get then is basically a public file folder that benefits both me and the people who follow the Tumblr.
As far as balancing working and sharing, it goes in this order:
You do your work, then every day you find a little bit of your process that you can share with others. Depending on where you are in the process, sometimes it’s in-progress work, sometimes it’s research or something you’re reading, sometimes it’s a finished work, and sometimes it’s a story about what something you’ve made is doing out in the world.
But again, sorry for the hard sell, but I wrote my whole next book about this. You should pre-order it!
The Venn Diagram part.
"The argument is this: Writing in public, whether it’s in the form of blogs or microblogs, like a Twitter stream, is forcing us to be clearer, more convincing and smarter. A big audience isn’t required. Knowing you write for an audience of just a few people will force you to stretch and grow."
— How Blogging And Twitter Are Making Us Smarter | NPR (via unionmetrics)
"This sentence has five words. Here are five more words. Five-word sentences are fine. But several together become monotonous. Listen to what is happening. The writing is getting boring. The sound of it drones. It’s like a stuck record. The ear demands some variety. Now listen. I vary the sentence length, and I create music. Music. The writing sings. It has a pleasant rhythm, a lilt, a harmony. I use short sentences. And I use sentences of medium length. And sometimes, when I am certain the reader is rested, I will engage him with a sentence of considerable length, a sentence that burns with energy and builds with all the impetus of a crescendo, the roll of the drums, the crash of the cymbals—sounds that say listen to this, it is important."
Gary Provost (via tuongexists)
Holy crap, what just happened there… (via cyrusgabriel)
Words, man. Words.
I use this to teach the importance of sentence variety in student essays.
(Source: qmsd, via revived-pegasus)
- It should arrest and hold attention.
- It should then invoke curiosity.
- It should surprise.
- It should invoke wonder.
- It should bring joy.
- It should be memorable.
- Bonus points if it’s funny.
Celebrated graphic artist Marian Bantjes's criteria for what makes great design (via explore-blog)
These same elements are also applicable to writing.
(Source: , via explore-blog)
"In a Darwinian process for weeding out the bad ideas, you will do best by encouraging all of them. The best will win and the others will fail. Thomas Edison said, ‘To have a great idea, have a lot of them.’"
— Google SVP Jonathan Rosenberg on ideas, creativity, and innovation. (via fastcompany)