Friday, September 19, 2008

An author's view of the Internet as a distraction

Coincidentally hitting the same topic I brought up earlier this week, The New York Times Paper Cuts book blog interviews writer Charles D'Ambrosio, asking him about the evil, evil Internets as part of their "Stray Questions" series. His answer's pretty interesting:

How much time — if any — do you spend on the Web? Is it a distraction or a blessing?

I’m coming to the conclusion that any time is too much time. My life hasn’t improved at all with the advent of the Internet; if anything, I’ve turned into a worse misfit. And change isn’t ipso facto good. I’m away from Portland for the year, but prior to leaving I’d been preparing to build a writing shed out in my backyard, with no electricity. Just a kerosene lantern and a tiny wood stove of the sort you see in ice-fishing huts with a crooked hobo stove-pipe coming out the roof. The world is too much with us. Wordsworth published that 200 years ago. Now I need a hideaway in back of my house just to feel at home. The Internet makes me feel desperate. The spiritual toll isn’t worth the few conveniences. It’s a sordid boon, like that Xmas when you didn’t get what you really wanted, and now that special experience of disappointment is upon us around the clock.

The Three Stages of Feedback

Just want to give you a heads-up to a fun post on Danny Stack's blog where he defines the three stages of feedback:

You worked hard on your script and handed it in on time, feeling good that it was a smoking first draft. But you haven’t heard anything in weeks. You begin to worry. An email arrives, finally, and it’s notes from the script editor. You click on the attachment and open the file. Your stomach churns, hoping to see only minor comments but you scroll down the screen to see pages of notes, all critical of what you’ve done. You fail to see the sugar coated or positive remarks, while the negative and critical notes stand out in bold and in capitals, or so it seems. You panic! They hate it. They think you’re rubbish. You are rubbish! You’re never going to work again!

I know I've felt that stage before just from fellow Leaguers' feedback alone. There's always that horrible, sinking feeling in your stomach when your beloved baby gets ripped apart by the wolves.

Check it out, if at least for the great photo illustrations.