Whew…. it’s been an interesting week-and-a-few-days…
First off, and most recently, Neil Gaiman news…. he’s won the Newberry for The Graveyard Book. I think it’s cool, even if traditional critcs of “the establishment” think it’s weird. And it’s one that I can attest to its being not just a “kid’s book”, even if that’s where it tends to be put in bookstores.
And I already have my copies of the Neil Gaiman Batman issues reserved through my local comics shop.
Now, last week we here in the South East had something we don’t get very often… snow! Lots of it. There was enough that two days of classes were cancelled. Fortunately, it happened to be the two days that my classes are, so there was a reprieve on some readings/projects for another week.
Last night was the first “real” session (thanks to the snow day) for my Research class. Since it’s Resaerch from the Writer’s Perspective, the big final project will be some form of creative work, “strongly influenced” by research. As the instructor went around the room, asking each person if they had anything in mind (just an idea, nothing that would be set in stone), and I was one of the few people that already had a form and subject in mind…
My tentative revelation: I will be writing a script or short story about the 1904 World Series. Or, more to the point, about how and why it didn’t happen. It’s something that’s been bubbling around for a couple of years, and seems to be one that will lend itself quite well to the requirements of that assignment.
The “teaching” class, which meets tonight may be something else. The reading has been tough… the first two chapters “read like stereo instructions” as the author goes into some of the background and theory (or, “This is how I got to my ideas.”). Really… fifty-four pages of build-up, and “this is what is going on behind what I think”, before actually getting to “here is what I think about teaching, and ways you can encourage writing in a classroom”?
It’s an academic text, I know, but the first two chapters just seemed to drag on. There were several moments that I found myself rereading the same lines, my eyes crossed trying to finish a paragraph or a page – anything to get to a point where I could do a “clean break” from the text. Right now, I couldn’t tell you much about the first two chapters, other than, “a lot of theory, and somebody that had the epiphany to come up with assignments that get the students involved in the material. Something to get them interested.” Duh.
*sigh* At least some of my pleasure reading is taking me back to the edge, and to an interesting future, by reading some William Gibson (his short stories). Over the long weekend, last week, I picked up two Harry Turtledove books… Opening Atlantis, and the Gladiator. I also found a copy of The Family Trade by Charles Stross – first book in a series that Chris had suggested to me back around the wedding. Two of the three have already been added to my book stack for the year. (Seriously, I already have most of my “pleasure” reading picked out. Since I have so many books on the shelves to choose from, I had to do something to streamline the process.)
Back to the grindstone… I have a class I need to try and finish prepping for, and only a little bitof time left at work for the day…