Showing posts with label writing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label writing. Show all posts

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

My first published short-short...

Word cloud in the shape of a tombstone.
So FunDead Publications is a publisher that started up in Salem and whom I've become familiar with.  They do a regular call for short stories, short-short stories, and other creative works of horror.  I decided I would give writing a short-short story a try and I really liked the experience.  Apparently, they did too as they recently published it.  

Here's the link to the story, be sure to go on over and read it--and thinking about signing up for their newsletter.  They have regular content that's always fun to read, watch, or engaged with (I'm a fan of their weekly polls).  Since it is a short-short story, I won't provide you with a lot of it, but here's the opening paragraph:

"Viscous red liquid seeped from the pages of the closed book and crawled in all directions. I thought about what an interesting predicament this was. I pondered what to do.Let the book bleed out, allowing my inner sadist to feast on the sight. Channel my bibliophile horror and attempt to clean up the damaged book. Ride the pounding waves of curiosity and open the tome."



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By Any Other Nerd Blog by Lance Eaton is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Goals for a New Year, 2017 Edition

Welcome to 2017!  

Word cloud of this post in the form of 2017

Despite the craziness on the global level, we've arrived at 2017.  Politically, 2016 was a rough year.  Personally, I cannot complain.  I landed a new job, I've made progress in my PhD program, I've lost weight, and I earned personal bests in my running, despite injuries.  Overall, I'm healthy, happy, and loved.  But it's 2017 and I need some goals (for those new to this, you can check out my 2016 goals and how well I did with them).  I feel like these should all be doable this year, but who knows.  In reality, I probably won't hit all of them, but enough of them that like last year, I find this a valuable activity to get me focused on how to progress in the year.  

Give It a Tri

We all know that I have taken to running over the last 5 years.  This past summer, I returned to bicycling as well when my IT band was giving me trouble.  I also started working at college that has a pool, which means I started swimming as well.  My brother and a few other friends have been nudging me to try a triathlon in the last few years.  I always made a point to say that I wouldn't do one because it would require access to a pool and I wouldn't get a gym membership because I don't like the gym (too easy for me to convince myself not to go).  But now that I've got access to a pool and am swimming regularly, I think it's fair to say I should definitely do a triathlon.  Now, they train hardcore for Ironman races, which is NOT what I will be doing this year.  I figure that a few sprints and an Olympic are well within my range.  I figure that I will got for 3 in total for the year and see how it goes.    

15,000 a day

This will be a bit of a stretch goal in that I'm not sure I will be able to do this everyday, but I believe in the aggregate I will be able to meet this goal.  Basically, I want to aim for 15,000 a day.  I do this pretty regularly but feel like making the goal of 15,000 makes it a bit more challenging.  Mostly, I'm curious to see how long of a streak I can maintain if I start with the intention of doing 15,000 a day.  My previous streak was somewhere withing the 50-60 days mark.  

And Another 15

I've lost 15 or so pounds with Weight Watchers.  I actually lost more but the fall semester and winter holiday season got the best of me.  My goal here is to get down to my goal weight and maintain it.  210 is the goal and I feel it's highly doable and of maintaining so long as I take to heart the ideas that Weight Watchers advocates.  

Stay On Target

I'm taking a break from having running goals for this year.  I still plan to regularly run and do a few half-marathons and such, but I feel like a break from the goals is a good idea while working on other physical aspects.  This past year, I hit two personal bests (under 40-minute 5-mile; under 1:55 half-marathon) that I never thought was possible.  I want to appreciate that and enjoy running this year without trying to outdo myself.  Call it a victory lap if you will, but just a year of enjoying running without a strict goal to work towards.  

Focus on the Breath

I've practiced different methods of self-awareness and reflection over the years and I feel like this year, I want to use what I've learned to focus on my breathing.  Much of the literature about mindfulness, self-control, emotional well-being, etc all extol the importances of the breath and I feel like it is speaking to me right now as something important to hold onto and focus upon as this year feels like it has the potential to get increasingly challenging given I'll be going soon into year 3 of the doctoral program and of course, the political craziness that is the US right now.  Working to take the time to notice and practice breathing can only help to center me more in the days to come.  
 

Less mindlessness

Whether it's eating without being hungry, ceaselssly scrolling Facebook, constantly checking email, etc, I want to take my focus on the breath and use it to help me to shift away from things that feel too unncessary or without direction.  That's not to say I'm giving up social media but just aiming to use it more systematically than I have in years past.  I want to work more to be in tune with what I need, what I'm trying to accomplish, and what I may be trying to avoid.  

Complete the book

So the Teaching History With Comics book still remains unfinished but I am working with the publisher to have a clear and direct plan to get it complete, which is good because I think it will prime me well for the project that will come next.  I feel like I have a good sense of how to move forward with it and will just need to keep myself on a steady production schedule.  

Figure out my dissertation topic

Yeah, this one.  I'm starting to get a sense of what my specific topic might be but feel that I really have to focus it this year.  So, I plan on journaling on it weekly to help me further flesh it out and hopefully be able at this time next year to more substantively say what it is that I'm doing.  

Read more books

I'm making a pack with myself to give up graphic novels for the year (unless they are the few that I subscribe to) in order to clear out the books that are in my to-read pile (and have been for too long).  I have to do a lot of school reading but I want to return to reading books for pleasure and personal interest, so I'm going to drop the graphic novels for a while.  Hopefully then, I can clean out some of my way-to-long- "to read" pile that I've been itching to get to over the past decade or so (maybe finally finish The Wheel of Time series or all of Sara Douglass's books!).  

Politically Activate 

The 2016 election still hurts.  It hurts because it seems to be an utter failure of a healthy and well-informed democratic republic; it hurts because so much of what the new administration represents is not only antithetical to what our country represents in its most idealized form (a nation that fairly and equally represents the interests of its entire citizenry), but because the identity politics war waged so hard and ugly by the right in terms of the people they were willing to disregard as not American and the ways in which they dehumanized so many different groups just boggles the mind of anyone who believes in equity, fairness, and equality.  The election was a wake-up call for many and I hope to be part of the change that will undermine or at least limit the damage that the incoming administration represents.  

So those are the goals for 2017.  Tall order?  Probably.  But that gives me plenty of opportunity to hit, miss, and improve.  I've also decided that one way of staying more on target will be to actually update the blog bi-monthly with where I am with things.  Let's see if I manage to do that, right?  

What about you?  What are some of your goals for 2017?  What would you want to see accomplished by 2018?  



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By Any Other Nerd Blog by Lance Eaton is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Review: The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person's Guide to Writing in the 21st Century

The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person's Guide to Writing in the 21st Century The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person's Guide to Writing in the 21st Century by Steven Pinker
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I heard much about Pinker's book when it came out last year and put it on my To-Read list. I've been a big fan of Pinker in general and his book, The Better Nature of Our Angels is still one of my all-time favorite books. I rather enjoyed this book too, in part, because Pinker is eloquent and clear. This style guide is something I'm likely to purchase and revisit as it really does layout some fundamental guidelines while simplifying writing and not being preachy. It's a must for anyone who wants to find better ways to improve his or her writing.

View all my reviews


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By Any Other Nerd Blog by Lance Eaton is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Reflections from Changing Lives Through Literature

In my two most recent sessions of Changing Lives Through Literature, I decided to have the participants do a reflection that I often do in my college courses that I teach.  On the last meeting, I asked all the participants to write a letter to themselves.  However, this wasn't a letter to their present self--but to the person they were months prior on our first meeting.  It's an interesting experience to watch participants struggle through this question and think about the ways they have (or haven't) connected with what's gone on in the course.  I also asked them to indicate if they would allow me to share out their letters (anonymously) to show other people their experiences.  While I will share them here in this blog post for others to read and appreciate, my favorite use of them is to show them to the participants in the next group as they get to hear from people at the other end at the very beginning. 

word cloud of post on changing lives through literature
It's a great exercise in coming full circle and feel free to use it with your group or in any other context. 

In reading the responses, I was so impressed with some of the different ways people embraced the experience and also in how they wanted to emphasize that change to themselves.  It's a pretty strong reward as a facilitator to seen the participants being such strong advocates. 

Participant #1
Hey, what's up!

You are going to enjoy it.  You need to be open to change.  You can't judge a book by its cover.  The stories need to be given a chance.  Don't be afraid and give them a chance.  I found myself reading the stories two or three times and learning a new thing every reread. Enjoy it!  It is not like school.  Plus you get $150 remitted off your fees.  Best of luck!

Participant #2
Dear Me

Hey man, how's life?  I just want to write to you to give you some advice about this course that I've taken.  It's called Changing Lives Through Literature.  It's a great class.  I have learned so many different skills in reading with the different stories and how to compare it to you and how it compares in life.  I will say, this class will give you a brand new view in life, like people have to go through difference obstacles just to get through or not get through the situation.  I will say, this class will change your life. 

Participant #3
Before class I was too quick to judge by not thinking before I acted.  Things just kind of ran together in my mind without though.  Over the course of the program, I realized a lot if I just thought things out.  The structure of the program also helped me think in a way where I can put things together a lot better in my head and my life has improved for the better.  If this was offered to me earlier on in life, things would have been different dramatically.  It will definitely last a lifetime with decision making. 

Participant #4
As I write this it is too late for me but maybe not for you.  Be aware of the various opinions and observations of the others in the class are not how you experienced the stories.  They all saw and felt something different.  They had and saw different things. 
            I was frustrated and wondered are they all blind or just different people who see and feel differently.  Does everyone experience everything so differently?

Participant #5
There are benefits to this class aside from the reduced probation time and fees.  Be sure to read each selection well in advance and be sure to reflect on the stories before class.  Think about how the different literary tools are used so you have plenty of points to bring up during the weekly discussions.

Participant #6
Please be as open-minded as you possibly can and consider where you yourself have been before placing judgment on things or people.  You can change and you can better yourself.  Even if it's small steps you take to progress towards chance, you are being pro-active in what you need to do. 
            Also and finally, advocate for yourself and ask for the help and resources if you need it.  Stay positive!

Participant #7
Dear Self,

This course is very helpful to be a part of.  It will help being in a group and sharing your thoughts with others as you discuss the readings assigned.  It will be fun to share in conversation about the readings and find others' opinions and ideas.  It will also help to open your mind through different characters in the stories and see through their struggles.  It will help you be more mindful about the days of your life as you move forward. 

Participant #8
Don't be so nervous and scared to be around new people.  It won't be as difficult as you may be thinking - stop thinking that everyone will judge you on what you have to say.  Realize what a great feeling it will be on your last day of class that you actually did it and followed through with a commitment.

Participant #9
Dear Me,

While recovering and thinking back on these 12 weeks of "Changing Lives Through Literature" I feel like a new individual.  This class is liberating, fun, and challenging but worth it all.  Please try hard and read twice, think deeper into the text; why and where and how are great questions to ask no matter what text, story or novel you are reading.  Try to have an open mind and enjoy.  I DID! XOXO

Participant #10
Dear Self,

Please come into this with a completely open mind.  That everything you know--everything you think you know best about--leave it at the door.  Be prepared to explore things about yourself you don't know anything about.  Be prepared to not always be right or that your opinion or ideas are not always right or the only way.  Be kind and generous to everyone you experiencing the adventure with.  That even when you think you are not able to relate to some of the stories or that they are so farfetched from who you are or what you have lived--changes are you haven't looked deep enough at yourself - so be open and willing to listen and learn from the stories and everyone in the class. 




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By Any Other Nerd Blog by Lance Eaton is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

My New Book: 10 Classic Tales of Horror

So I could mark this down as a goal achieved already for 2015, but I most likely won't.  I did want to share with people this book that I published.  It is an anthology of horror stories:  10 Classic Tales of Horror to be precise that I pulled together with introductions to make and publish.  My purpose in doing so wasn't to just put it out there and make a quick buck; my purpose was to see how easily and cheaply it can be done.  

One project that I am involved in at work is an Open Textbook Initiative as part of the Open Educational Resources (OER) movement.  To that end, we have been looking at ways of making learning materials available for students for free or a reasonable price.  Questions arise about OER with regards to how students can access them, particularly in print form.  Some OER resources provide physical copies for purchase that are significantly cheaper than their commercial counterparts.  However, I wanted to think about the idea of an instructor pulling together OER resources into book of sorts and what would that look like if the instructor wanted students to afford a cheap physical copy.  
Book Cover - 10 Classic Tales of Horror - Lance Eaton

This approach grabbed me because I teach literature and we are often using anthologies.  I wanted to think about how I might pull together works that are in the public domain for my students to access as a physical text.  Therefore, I make the 10 Classic Tales of Horror as an experiment.  I used Amazon's self-publishing platform, CreateSpace, which made it quite simple (once I actually read the instructions on formatting the Word Document, I had it all in). 

Right now, the physical book is around $10 on Amazon and is about 438 pages.  That's a reasonable price if this were a full collection of course materials that students could now have in hand.  The Kindle digital version of the book is currently listed for $ .99 but I am working on a means of getting the price lowered to $0.00 if possible.  The cost for the physical book is purely the cost of production and I make 0.00 on each unit sold. 

My goal in creating this is to not make a profit in any capacity and in doing so, provide a path for faculty to published their own content for their students in the forms that they are interested in pursuing.  Even if I can't get the Kindle verson to $0.00, I can always make the PDF available to students just as I have made it available below.  

For those interested, here are the links and let me know what you think--both about the book and the process.

Be sure to tell me what you think if you happen to purchase or download it for free!


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By Any Other Nerd Blog by Lance Eaton is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

A Year of Active Blogging & 200th Blog Post

So I returned to this blog in full force just over a year ago when I renamed the blog and started to write regularly.  In June of last year, I hit my 100th post in total on the blog.  And today, I'm writing about my 200th post, which means I'm averaging about 2 blog posts per week, give or take.  Thus, I've been blogging strong and am starting to see the uptick in traffic that many bloggers talk about in the first year.  I'm not seeing crazy numbers but a few thousand each month--which is better than the scores I saw at this time last year.

In looking at the past year, it's clear that I've found some niches that seem to work for me.  That I blog about my running antics is amusing as I would have thought as a writer, I would never be a runner but learned that being a runner has helped me to be a better writer.  As I've crossed the half-way point with my current Master's Degree (Education, Instructional Design) coupled with my current position, I'm clearly writing more and more about education.  That certainly makes sense.

My top five posts include the following.  It's curious to see the range among them.  I was particularly suprised that the Childfree post rated so high.  My letter to students makes sense since I do believe it to be a well-formed thought about what I would love for students to understand about their education and the reflection on the Boston Marathon was bound to get high reception.



As an act of self-reflection, I have found blogging to be extremely rewarding.  It forces me to think aloud about the different topics that come up in my daily life and formulate a meaningful way to display that to the world.  Given the increasing traffic, I would say that it's somewhat successful.  But even if it wasn't, I'd continue to do it.  I've come to find my conversations are richer--when on topics I've written about or not--because I've come to have a much more reflective thought process in such conversations.  I'm less likely to grab for the easy answer and try to play around with the ideas first.

Branching Out
In the last year, I've added a few things.  There is the Facebook Page so that if people want to catch updates and the occasional reposting of an older post, you can like the page and stay up to date.  I also fixed the RSS Feed for this blog as it was acting wonky and having some problems with it.  I can see now that my subscription list has grown significantly since I fixed it.  The email subscription in the upper right hand corner is also working.

I'm also thinking of adding more media to the site including further developing my Youtube channel and adding audio where possible.

Rewarding and Reward Me?
Beyond the reward I get from writing, the biggest reward I get is from friends, colleagues, and acquaintances who tell me they read my blog and enjoy reading it (in general or a specific post).  I hear it in face to face conversations, via text, or in emails.  All of which is great and I am grateful for.  If I had but one request it would be that such comments be not regulated to one-to-one conversations but made part of this blog itself through the comments feature (or through discussion threads when the link is posted to social media outlets) as I have always wanted to this blog to be an act of dialogue more than monologue.  That it brings me into face to face conversations is great--that is certainly part of the goal.  But if you are read the blog, please think about dropping off a comment and letting me know your thoughts (good and bad).  I generally respond to comments and would find it useful to understand which posts are striking people the most (besides just how many hits they get).  


So that's my 200th post.  The question will be how quickly will it take me to get to my 300th post.  I'm anticipating much quicker (especially when I look at all the posts I have in my draft box).  That being said--what would people like to hear or read about?  Are there things you're interested in hearing my take on?

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By Any Other Nerd Blog by Lance Eaton is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Friday, March 8, 2013

2 Months - Where are Those Goals?

So now that we're into March, I figured I'd come back and take a look at my goals and thoughts for 2013 and see how I'm measuring up to them.  The current track record is a bit lackluster to say the least.    But I also think a reflection like this is apt to keep me on track or at least reviving some of these.

So where am I on track?  Well, after my most recent run, I feel like I've created a good benchmark to put me on track to run a marathon this year.  If I can reasonably run 10 miles with 10 minute miles, I feel that a marathon is certainly on track.  With regards to pull up?  I'm up to 5 or 6 though that's more of work of the last two weeks than it has been a systematic process.  I've also been keeping up with my blog and overall have seen a consistent increase in visitors to the site over the last two months.

So what goals have been in the middle of the road in terms of progress or very little progress?  If I set a pace of running 20 miles a week to meet the 1000 miles run in 2013, I would be drastically under the count since to date, I have only run 41 miles in the last two months (that's not the only exercise I've done--just the only running I've done).  However, since I acquired a treadmill in late January and have gotten into a better habit of running on it, I feel that number  will pick up soon--especially now that I've got my first season run under my belt and am quite happy with the results.  Success begets success.  So though I'm somewhat behind I feel like I'm heading int he right direction.

Filling the Thankful Jar I was going strong for much of January and part of February but got distracted.  I may give up on trying to backdate the last 2-3 weeks and just focus on regrouping to start putting in notes today and moving forward.  The good-deed jar I kept up for most of January but have trailed off.  I find it problematic to decipher between what's a good deed and what I'm thankful for as well as what constitutes a "good deed."  Rather, I find myself asking "is that good enough"?  For instance, if I help someone out because it's part of my job, but I also take pride in helping in such instances, is that jar-worthy?

So where am I close to failing or haven't worked out the right approach to enact?  I've been clearly horrible at eating out only once a week.  I haven't been successful with this for any week that I can think of.  This leads me to think there needs to be a better way to enforce it or prime myself to aim for it.  I'll have to play with this a bit more.  I don't think I've made significant progress on the book though or done much with it.  I've been focusing more on my blogging and of recent, I've been engrossed in writing a short story that is working its way through me.  But again, this might mean it needs some better planning and focus.  Mayhaps, I aim for a certain word count within the book as I've seen others do.  Equally insubstantial is the progress I have made on using my car less.  Like the writing, I need a clearly and more quantifiable benchmark.  As for the last goal I set out, learning to program, I think I'm likely to bench that for this year as I'm considering going for a degree in programming at a future date.  After all, I'm still working on a Master's degree and teaching.  I can put one of these goals on hold and that seems the most feasible one.

So that's where I am with my goals for the year.  Some progress and some flatlining.  But it's still early in the year and the opportunities are still out there.

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By Any Other Nerd Blog by Lance Eaton is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Favorite Posts of 2012

Like many others, I see the end of the year as an arbitrary time to reflect, but that won't stop me from doing so.  This post will highlight some of my favorite posts in the last year (of which there about 90 posts between this post and when I restarted the blog back in March, 2012).  What follows are what I think are some of the best of what I've done.

As a whole I've really enjoyed blogging and how it has helped me think more clearly about different ideas and issues.  It's one thing to have ideas in your head, it's another to talk in miscellaneous exchange about them, but it's entirely something else to collect them together in written form for others to see and respond.  Putting them in this forum has allowed me to share what I feel I can share with the world (my ideas and thoughts) while also allowing me to hear from others where they agree, disagree, and have even been moved by what I've said.

So here are a few of those:

On Becoming a Reader Part 1 and Part 2 (May 2 & May 5, 2012)

We all know I'm an avid reader.  But I think there's a profound importance in promoting that idea and making sure others know the importance and value of reading.  In many ways, it's a solitary act, but one that needs to be regularly discussed in a public forum.

The Right to Fail at College (March 17, 2012)

I'm profoundly challenged by the role of shame and failure in our culture.  I don't think failure is a bad thing, but the ways in which we shame people for failure seems to create more problems. particularly with youth; they will avidly avoid that which they've failed.  When it comes to education, a system that doesn't utilize failure as a learning moment seems to be poor education.

On the Death of a Student (April 4, 2012)

One of my harder posts (emotionally speaking).  The classroom is such an curious environment and dealing with the death of a student in that class is a very challenging event therein.

Standing Tall: After a Week of Active Standing at Desks (June 19, 2012)

I've become a big fan of the standing desk and 6 months later--I still love my makeshift standing desks.

1 Year Later: of Fitbits and Vibrams (June 25, 2012)

A realization of how some tools can actually make all the difference.

Sure, I'll Do That: Where Volunteering Has Led Me (July 12, 2012)

A reflection on the benefits and interesting ways volunteering has influenced my life.

Tale of 9 Runs: Men Cry, Go Figure (August 6, 2012)

Our culture isolates men from talking or thinking much or understanding their feelings.  We are often made to pretend or close out emotional experiences because of the roles "men" are supposed to exhibit.  Here's some of my thoughts on that.

Verbal Handgranades, Vitriolic Banter, and Verifiable Rape (August 23, 2012)

A more nuanced discussion on political rhetoric and missing the real issues that are out there.

Tales of 9 Runs: A Tale of 2 Medals or I Just Ran a 25K, No, Really! (September 3, 2012)

The first long run I accomplished this past fall.  Still marveling at it and the other runs I did this fall.

A Youth Well (Mis)Spent: (Video)Games of My Mind (September 10, 2012)

Video games were a major part of my childhood and I'm all the better for them.

Online Education: Some Considerations (September 14, 2012)

As I've gotten more experience at my job as well as further in my MEd program, some thoughts about the nature of online education are brewing. 

Tales of Running:  First and Last Impressions (September 21, 2012)

 A reflection on the passing of a coach and kind man

Tales of Running:  Resilience and Mules (October 13, 2012)

One of my best reflections on running and how I got there.

Look What I Made: Apple Leather (November 12, 2012)

Maybe not one of my favorite posts per se, but it was one of the most popular in the last year.   I certainly enjoyed making it and talking about it (and am still making batches regularly).

Students: Why You're Smarter Than You Think (November 28, 2012)

Students are sometimes their own worst enemy when it comes to learning.  They need to know they're way smarter than what they give themselves credit for.

If Teaching Online Is Easy--Are We Doing It Wrong? (December 12, 2012)

Again, as I think more about education and what it does or doesn't look like in the online environment, some of these assumptions are problematic. 

Shootings, Troubled Boys, and System Failures (December 28, 2012)

 One of the hardest pieces of writing I did all year, but I also think quite important in the larger discussion around the Sandy Hook shooting.


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By Any Other Nerd Blog by Lance Eaton is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Friday, June 22, 2012

100th Celebratory Post!

So this is my 100th post.  It's taken my about 2 1/3 years to get here.  Not a record-breaking pace by any means but I survived the 6 month death march that happens to many blogs.  I've also successfully transistion the purpose and name of the blog from the Hitchhiking Adjunct to By Any Other Nerd.  That obviously makes my first blog post, way back when, a bit irrelevant (I'm sure there's plenty that makes it irrelevant, but just speaking to this particular aspect).

Not all posts have been "true" posts to this particular blog.  A good deal have been blog posts I've written elsewhere (such as the NSCC LETS Blog and the Freeway Flyer) and added a snippet of the post here, then redirected the reader to the actual blog post on that site.  Overall, I've managed to keep going with this blog with a range of topics, ideas and thoughts, that people have regularly commented upon.  So I've managed to keep it looking fresh, or at least I believe so.  I feel I've got a better hand on it than maybe I did after the first year.

Memorable (and Not So) Posts

So by far, I think the post on the death of a student was the most poignant and intense of my posts in the 100.  It's always curious to see what readers have responded to.  For instance, this post on sequels, had over 2500 hits.  It makes me wonder whose radar it showed up on.  This post about how we process intolerance with regards to religion, I didn't think was fantastic on my end, but the details responses by my students I found to be very interesting. My Letter to the Editor in the Boston Globe was probably one of my personal highlights in my writing experiences.  

Direction


Having reached 100, I plan to keep going forward and writing more.  I'm hitting a good stride with it and have found it's good for different outlets such as my posts on running or my thoughts on audiobooks.  I'll continue to cross post what I'm writing elsewhere as I feel it's good to have a centralized place for my writings, but really do want to expand more.  I'm also going to consolidate some of my categories as there's a decent amount of overlap and there's some categories that aren't as relevant as they were before.  Also, I can feel that I'm shifting into a more creative phase of my life and I plan to document that on here. Whether that's gardening, computer scripting, or woodwork (all of which are vying for my attention), you can be sure find it here.

I'm hoping to grow my audience more.  No so much for the fandom (though who am I kidding, I'm a total attention whore), but more for the interaction.  I like writing, but I like dialogue more and want this blog to be a conduit to that.  So please, be sure to spread the word, Like, +1, Tweet, Link, etc.  I've certainly enjoyed the traffic and the people who have left comments and look forward to more.

So for my regular readers--what have you enjoyed, learned, taken from this blog? I'm hoping there is some answers to this one :)

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By Any Other Nerd Blog by Lance Eaton is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

The Blog Year In Review

Well, it’s been a year since I started this blog; so go me for beating the odds and being among the blogs to actually survive beyond the 6 months.  I’m also congratulating myself on managing to be somewhat reliable and post a few a month (most months) and manage about 60 blogs in the first year—that’s just over 1 a week.  I’m hoping to improve that in the next year, but who knows.  And ultimately, I shouldn’t be too proud of that since a reasonable portion of those posts were repostings of things published elsewhere. 

So how has blogging been for me?  Fun, frustrating and rewarding. 

Fun.

I’ve been enjoying having a forum to put together semi-coherent thoughts and put them out into the world for people to read.  I’ve always enjoyed writing and this gives me a means of writing about things that grab my attention and feel I can talk about with some level of intelligence.  When I get into a post that I’m thinking about, I find myself smiling and rather enjoying myself.

Cartoon:  Shakespeare at computer "To blog or not to blog THAT IS THE QUESTION"Frustrating.  


There’s sooooo much to write about.  My links folder filled with article links and topic ideas is like 30+ pages long and keeps growing.  I would love to spend a week straight just writing as many as possible and then just release them on a regular basis.  It’s also frustrating because it does slip my mind with my other responsibilities and then I feel like I’m disappointing my blog.  I’ll log in—and it will still be there like a faithful dog but I project the long face and sad eyes saying, “Why have you abandoned me for so long?  Don’t you love me?”  Ok, maybe not that dramatic, but there’s still a sense of guilt. 

Rewarding. 

 I’ve had friends, family, students, and random strangers comment on the blog, or to me directly that they enjoy reading it and appreciate what I’m doing.   It’s also rewarding because it has definitely spurred my writing and gotten me back into working on some other writing projects that I hope I will at some point be capable of talking about here (or even pimping out the products of said work). 

Ok, I’ve made it a year. So what’s the next goal?  Any recommendations the readers out there?  I think I want to write more and I’m pretty sure that’s feasible with the changes in my forthcoming schedule, but what else?  I am also hoping to do some more writing on audiobooks.  In fact, I had planned to do a good deal of that, but it never came up in my posts.  


If you have some thoughts of what you’d like to see…or hell, you’d like to write something on here, either add to the comments here or send me an email.  

Here’s to a year!