Friday, June 10, 2011

What I'm Reading

After a busy week in my non-writing life, with a Landcare meeting and a Landcare World Environment Day function, family visiting from the north and south, I am gearing myself up for another push writing fiction. The final three chapters of Srese Kerr's first instalment, in particular.

Usually when I'm writing, I don't read a lot of fiction. Hence there are a lot of non fiction books lying around, with bookmarks in them or face down on the pages where I'm up to.

Jeff Vandermeer's Booklife I've been dipping into here and there in the odd bits of time I've been having while waiting for appointments.

Our Choice: A Plan to Solve the Climate Crisis by Al Gore (2009) was on special at my local bookshop. It's another thing to read in odd minutes. Lots of good info pertaining. Maps and charts and photos.

I read Deep Survival by Laurance Gonzales (2005) every couple of years for the great descriptions of survival stories, as well as the reasons why other people in the same situations didn't make it.

And I'm reading again the sections of Your Home Technical Manual appropriate to the renovations I'm planning.

Tim Flannery's Here On Earth has also been keeping me busy and inspired.

The Writers of the Future, Volume 27 is my fiction treat.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Will I Twitter?

My ideas about Twitter last time I talked about it, here, have gone up the learning curve, and down whenever I slid back a couple of notches every time I allow myself to wander off track.

This chart from the Wikipedia article was very educational. Pointless babble is obviously not where I'd want to go. Spam not either. The rest of the categories can, according to Jeff Vandermeer writing in Booklife: Strategies and Survival Tips for the 21st Century Writer , be bent to the conversation of writers with their readers, as well as being good for networking and promotion. He also mentions some twitterers use the platform for creative output, the direction I was leaning into, and others mainly for networking.

The second major use seems to require real time twittering, on-going conversing, which I would find difficult to maintain, due to the way being online cuts into writing time. Usually I give myself a couple of hours a day online, in the afternoon, after I've done a swag of words. And part of that time is answering emails, and updating this and the mullumyard blogs.

Tweet contents

Content of Tweets according to Pear Analytics.[56]
  Pointless babble
  Pass-along value
San Antonio-based market-research firm Pear Analytics analyzed 2,000 tweets (originating from the US and in English) over a two-week period in August 2009 from 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM (CST) and separated them into six categories:[56]
  • Pointless babble – 40%
  • Conversational – 38%
  • Pass-along value – 9%
  • Self-promotion – 6%
  • Spam – 4%
  • News – 4%[56]
Social networking researcher Danah Boyd responded to the Pear Analytics survey by arguing that what the Pear researchers labelled "pointless babble" is better characterized as "social grooming" and/or "peripheral awareness" (which she explains as persons "want[ing] to know what the people around them are thinking and doing and feeling, even when co-presence isn’t viable").[57]

Thursday, June 2, 2011

One of Those Where did the Week Go Moments

Looking back at the last post I noticed the date on it was Sunday 29th. I thought Huh? I thought I wrote it on Monday and went to a meeting in the afternoon? And it's Thursday today? I had a plan for the week but the week is gone. I spent it on ... what?

Tuesday I spent all my writing time trying to compose Twitters on Deep Ecology, another growing interest. What struck me, with the restriction on keystrokes, 140, feels a lot like composing poetry. And I fell back into it just like that. Writing poetry. It put me into a weird space that day.

On Wednesday I took my mother, aged 86, to one of her appointments. We usually make an outing of it, with lunch at the Middle Pub. Then window- and actual shopping.

Thursday, that's today, I believe, amongst other things I finished reading a wonderful novel, Death of a Whaler by Nerida Newton. Beautiful spare writing. Lyrical. About Byron Bay in the sixties as well as about a wonderful character whom I will long remember, Flinch, and his friend Nate who died in the first chapter only to be kept alive in Flinch's memories. I recommend it.

And today I started thinking about the new ending I need for Srese Kerr's part of the Lodestar story. I think I'm just about over the letting go of the old ending and can make a clean start. I think I'm revving myself up to write the last chapter first. That's a new thing for me.

And today, after I read this article on ifbooks, a good summary of what I have been reading about the whole deal for the last year or so,

Moving On Jun 1, 2011 by Peter Donoughue

I thought that the debate about ebooks and epublishing versus paper books and paper publishing hasn't yet touched on the comparison of embodied carbon in either processes. 
I know it seems as though ebooks should be a lot cheaper on carbon. After all the paper is totally carbon. But of course as long as the book 'lives' the carbon is bound up in it. And I read somewhere only yesterday that the internet as a whole chews up about as much electricity as a full size country and then some. I'm determined to research it.