Category Archives: writing

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Aha! That’s it! That’s my thing! Research as blogging

I’ve been struggling to figure out exactly how graduate school and my
courses fit into The Great Scheme of Things, and I think I’ve just
figured out exactly how to motivate myself. =)

I’m going to look at my reading course as a series of blogging
assignments. Because I’m in grad school, I have the time and resources
to dig through academic papers and books that most people won’t even
hear about. Whee! I found my value-added niche!

Three things:

- Michael D. Pollock of Solostream complimented me on my writing based

on the Linux Journal article I sent him. “Wow,” he said.

- Mark Chignell (research supervisor) scheduled a meeting with me

tomorrow to see how I’m doing. Felt guilty about not having more
visible progress.

- Took the time to think about where I was going and how I was getting

there. Needed to figure out how to organize my notes. Quadrant II
stuff. =)

SO. If I break my big deliverable down into lots and lots and lots of
small deliverables—a mini-paper each week, with plenty of references
and fun stuff—then it’ll be much more fun _and_ much more useful.

I can’t wait to wake up tomorrow and start writing! This Friday:
Blogging as personal knowledge management…

Flash fiction: ALLEYCAT – 196 words

ALLEYCAT

by Sacha Chua

I tug the hem of my red leather dress down against the cold. Out of
the corner of my eye, I see another man join my shadow. Three men on
my tail. It’s two in the morning. Not a good time to walk in this part
of town.

I walk faster, my heartbeat louder than my footsteps.

One man yells, “Hey, babe! Wait up! We just want to play!”

I can’t outrun them. Not in these stiletto boots. I walk faster
anyway, adrenalin surging through my blood. I feel their leers boring
into my back.

Narrow alley to my right. Probably leads to a dead end.

Perfect.

I disappear around the corner. Their footsteps get louder, cockier.
They can’t wait to close the gap. I can hear them breathe.

Snapping my right heel open, I withdraw my monofilament garrote.
Strangulation is fun, but decapitation is so much quicker—and this
one takes a feather of a touch to slice through bone and cartilage.
This way, they can hear their heads hit the ground.

I make short work of the scum. Then I wipe blood off leather, replace
my heel, and saunter on, an alleycat on the prowl.


In response to “PIRATES” prompt on flashxer mailing list:

THEY PICKED UP THE BLIPS OF HE THREE BOATS PERSUING THEM, BUT DID
NOT REALIZE THEY WERE PIRATES UNTIL THE FIRST SHOT WAS FIRED. THE
CRUISE SHIP CAPTAIN ORDERD FULL SPEED, THE LINER WAS PEPPERED WITH
GUN FIRE AS SHE MOVED FROM A LEISURELY 15 KNOTS TO MAXIMUM SPEED,
LEAVING THEM IN THE WAKE.

To write well, one must have leisure

To write well, one must have leisure: leisure to read, leisure to think, to talk things over, to talk oneself in and out of a position, to compose and rewrite and polish, to travel, to observe, to listen, to let the sounds and voices sink into one’s consciousness until they are ready to come out again, having “suffered a sea-change.” All this requires leisure, and leisure is an expensive commodity.

– Miguel A. Bernad, SJ

One of the reasons I want to figure out how to retire early or enjoy great work-life balance. =)

Discovered via a comment left by purpleslurpee on charlesatan’s essay on writer’s block.

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The five-year journal

Check out Cool Tools: The 5 Year Journal for a journal that promotes seredipitous discovery and reflection. =) Maybe I should customize my website to display headlines from the last few years…

Blogbridge – nifty!

Hooray for Blogbridge! I was beginning to wonder why I hadn’t heard of something that flexibly let you slice and dice feeds to make them just the way you want. It’s a Java application, so it’s not as useful as a Web-based thing would be for me, but it will do. Good idea. =)

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Hooray for mindmaps and checklists

I scribbled down a whole bunch of things earlier. That makes it
ridiculously easy to just chew through the bunch, writing a paragraph
or so on each point. I can edit it down to the right length and add
proper transitions later.

I don’t think linearly. I can’t sit down and write something from
start to finish. I jump around, I get distracted, I need to explain
things to people (or penguins)…

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