We are living in some strange times right now. COVID-19 has covered the entire globe. Here in Ontario, a state of emergency has been declared. Toronto is eerily quiet. There’s almost a 1984-type feeling to all of this with so much of the information I’m getting coming from the television.
I hope that you’re all staying safe, washing your hands, and enjoying the company of your loved ones.
Slow-motion multitasking. Tim Harford, in one of his TED Talks, shares with us how common a trait it is among the most highly creative among us (we should include ourselves in this group). Somewhat contradictorily, this type of multitasking is beneficial to the creative process. Multiple foci can work alongside each other to help you be your most creative.
Nobody tells this to people who are beginners, I wish someone told me. All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is a gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn’t have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know it’s normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story. It is only be going through a volume of work that you will close the gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s gonna take awhile. It’s normal to take awhile. You’ve just gotta fight your way through.
This quotation really sets up the project that I’m about to introduce you to quite nicely.
I recently finished reading Reproduction by Ian Williams, the most recent Scotiabank Giller Prize winner. It was a little too experimental for me. While reading the book, I didn’t find myself feeling emotionally invested in the characters, but more like an indifferent witness to their lives. Williams’ use of language was, at times, distracting. If you’re looking for a book that tells you a story about people’s lives and challenges the traditional notion of family, this might be a great book for you.
You can pick up a copy of Reproduction by Ian Williams here.
If you’ve been thinking about switching over to a markdown editor, you should.
It took me a while to finally decide to switch over. I was holding on to Microsoft Word, believing that it was working well for me, and, for the most part, it was. When I discovered “focus mode,” I thought that my writing experience was changed forever. It was for a short while, but it didn’t stick.
Last week, I was standing in one of the six aisles of cat wet food at a PetSmart when I got a text from a friend of mine. He was asking me about my latest blog post. He was just curious to know how I was promoting myself. When he found out that I don’t do much, he asked if I’m just writing for myself. I told him that I am, that when I was focussed on my stats, I would get discouraged when I didn’t get the readership that I was hoping for. Now, I just try to focus on writing. If I can do that, I feel successful.
I’m having a hell of a time trying to figure out how to get good, clean audio recordings for my videos. So, tonight, I tested a few different options that I have available to me. Here’s the video that resulted:
In the end, I’ve come away knowing that I need to learn more about audio recording. This is going to take some time but it’ll be interesting enough.
I knew that weddings are expensive but I didn’t realise how expensive they are until I was responsible for paying my share of one. Every cost is multiplied by the number of people who attend. And, and!, you’re treating them! It’s like you forgot to get drunk but are still willing to buy another round for everyone at your table, and for the rest of the bar.
I had the AirPods Pro for about two weeks before I returned them. I took them to the Apple Store because they weren’t charging properly. The suggested solution was for me to return them and then repurchase new ones when they’re back in stock, a month from now. I’m not sure if I will but they were nice to have for the two weeks.