In Which I Get Obsessed With MOOC

So here’s what I do, sometimes, while I’m working:  I have Coursera on in the background.  Well, and sometimes I just sit and listen to it. If you haven’t run across Coursera yet, it’s one of the online sites that offers university-level courses, on various topics.  For free!  Yes.  For free.  (Oh, I know, a…

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How Do We Write?

Oh, joy!  I went back into my RSS feeds, in order to come up to speed for blogging, and found this post from Cal Newport about How Novelists Get Work Done.  Newport is — to my great interest — always concerned not just with productivity, but especially deep productivity.  He thinks a lot about how…

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Becoming an Expert. One Day at at Time.

Over at Study Hacks, which if you read this blog often, you know I both adore and argue with often, Cal Newport is talking about his strong belief (and I’m with him here) that to become successful, we need expertise. He got started on this, this time (he addresses this a lot) in thinking about…

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Aventure and Falling in Love

  In my online Taking the Aventure classes, we start off with “Remembering Your Aventures,” and there’s a guided meditation (which you can get for free if you sign up for my newsletter!), meant to help the listener remember some of the previous aventures he or she has had in his or her life.  Because…

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Deep Work

Cal Newport has recently posted a technique for setting up what he calls “deep work” sessions, a technique that seems very useful indeed.  His picture of how he uses the technique isn’t very illuminating, though, at least to me; here’s my translation: He’s got a list of things he wants to work on.  (In his…

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Down Time and Deep Projects

It’s finals week in the university where I teach.  All time changes.  The papers that we knew were coming, all semester, get written, and get read.  The finals which we knew were coming, all semester, get taken, and get graded.  All the departmental work that has to get finished before the summer is getting shoved…

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Passion for the Work

As I have said before, I admire Cal Newport’s Study Hacks blog very much; even when I don’t agree with his conclusions, I find his ideas useful.  He is good to think on if a man would express himself neatly.* But yesterday one of my friends told me he was absolutely turned off by the…

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On Writing Every Day

I admire greatly Cal Newport’s blog Study Hacks; he’s interested in examining myths about studying, and entrepreneurship, and achievement, stacking the myths up against data, and thinking about what really works and what doesn’t.  And he’s usually got extremely good advice.  So I was very amused to come across one of his posts with which,…

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On Changing Plans

Over at Your Super Awesome Life, Ashley Wilhite has a guest blogger, Stephany, who has posted about the career change she made, one internship away from graduating.  Now, that’s scary stuff.  In my professoring years, I’ve talked to many students who discovered they hated their fields, but didn’t feel like they could change.  They’d already…

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