As a person who spends an utterly insane number of hours reading and writing on digital thingies, the quality of the text on these thingies is important to me. And it’s pretty remarkable to look at text on this new iPad. It’s actually too hard to characterize in words how words look on this device. So I thought I’d share the results of a study that I (supposedly) performed.
I’m a coward. When faced with a big project – something time consuming, something that will require sacrifices to be made – my instinct is to run away. Fast. No looking back. For that reason, it took me a long time to come around to the point where I (somewhat) enjoy the challenge of a big project. I’m talking about something like writing a novel or being in a long-term relationship. These are things that require work. Day after day. Month after month. Year after year.
The funny thing is that a key method I use to confront these big projects is so simple, so low-tech (so cheap in therapy costs!) that it almost seems like it’s cheating. And here it is:
Call me slow, but as far as I see it, there are two ways to write a book:
Buy a new house. Not to live in, but to write in. (Yeah, you heard me correctly: I ended that sentence in a preposition. My upcoming novel is full of those kinds of sentences, and also dangling modifiers, and split infinitives, and run-on sentences, hot damn do I have a lot of run-on sentences! And sentence fragments.)
So I’ve finally put together a presentation describing how I make my presentations. It’s a pretty geeky little video that focuses on the tools that I use. I’ve honestly stumbled my way into this video-making process, so it is definitely flawed…
My people have asked me to get slightly more savvy in the social media and marketing realm. Since I’m a pretty low key sort of person, I wanted to step up my online game in a way that still felt suited to who I am. Basically, I didn’t want to get a sick feeling in my stomach as I proceeded. So here is how I handled the situation:
- I hid in the bathroom weeping for 30 minutes. My people didn’t specifically ask me to do this, but I find that this is an effective first step in any great (or tolerable) plan.
I cheated my way onto the 5by5 podcast network. This week, I appear on the Cocktail Napkin, a video podcast with Jeremy Fuksa. He calls the show “a periodical of uncurbed ideas”. Jeremy saw my Obsession x Voice video and asked if we could sit down and talk about failure and creativity. (Two of my favorite subjects.) Thanks, Jeremy, for the fun conversation. Click on the link below to watch…
The Cocktail Napkin, Episode #49
I just got a copy of iPad at Work (Amazon, iBook), written by my online friend, David Sparks. This book is so well put together. What I mean is that it’s more than just a list of cool iPad apps; it’s more than a bunch of productivity insights; it’s more than a bunch of really useful (and often amusing) screenshots. From start to finish, it’s clear that David spent a great deal of time ensuring that this book makes you more productive on your iPad. [Read more…]
I didn’t know shit about the man. Plus, I was late to the party. I didn’t even start paying attention to Steve and Apple until a few years ago. He was already uncomfortably skinny when I noticed him and when I started admiring Apple products. But today my Macbook Air and my iPhone are essential parts of my work. A single day without either of these devices and I will feel it heavily. Even so, I think I’m unqualified to talk about the guy and the company.
This is my video tribute to a great talk at SXSW in 2009 between John Gruber and Merlin Mann about obsession and voice. Here is how it has affected me as a neurotic novelist.
Michael Schechter was kind enough to interview me about productivity and creativity. Fun interview on two subjects that I care a lot about. Not only did he interview me, but he also felt that my responses were not too crappy to post online. Thanks, Michael!
Check it out: 2×4 With Yuvi Zalkow