Merlin Mann on a better media diet

Posted on Thu 30 November 2017 in Dispatches • Tagged with politics, quotes, social media • 1 min read

Politics, celebrity gossip, business headlines, tech punditry, odd news, and user-generated content.

These are the chew toys that have made me sad and tired and cynical.

— Merlin Mann, Better

This is from the revised essay republished seven years ago. It’s worth revisiting, especially when you add in our new …


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Writing Report Card: November 2017

Posted on Thu 30 November 2017 in Dispatches • Tagged with publishing, report card, submissions, writing • 1 min read

Last month, I announced a new recurring feature where I’ll publicly post a report card of fiction writing activity each month. This series is inspired by Aeryn Rudel’s blog Rejectomancy. Each month I’ll post my results, summarizing words written, submissions, rejections, and hopefully acceptances.

Here’s the …


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Riding the Mastodon

Posted on Sun 26 November 2017 in Dispatches • Tagged with mastodon, open source, personal, social media, twitter • 7 min read

Reader, I did it again. I joined another social network.

I know, I know. I should know better, right? But this time feels different. There’s something special about this one. Maybe it’s simply the contrast from Facebook and Twitter that makes it so appealing, but I can’t …


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Tell a better story to improve your life

Posted on Sun 12 November 2017 in Dispatches • Tagged with mental health, self improvement • 7 min read

The tangle of human lives is spun with stories. Every relationship, every shared belief, and every history is made up of such things. More importantly, your stories are what define you, whether you are conscious of it or not. Being aware, being conscious in your tale telling, can make all …


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Writing Report Card: October 2017

Posted on Tue 31 October 2017 in Dispatches • Tagged with publishing, report card, submissions, writing • 1 min read

I’ve been writing a lot more lately, shifting my work from a secret passion to more of a serious pursuit. The last few months I’ve been making steady progress on project DARK CONDUIT, and producing short stories which I’ve been submitting to fiction markets. The last couple …


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John Darnielle’s Lyrics Slay Me

Posted on Fri 20 October 2017 in Dispatches • Tagged with music, podcasts, quotes • 2 min read

When you punish a person for dreaming his dream,
don’t expect him to thank or forgive you.

The Mountain Goats, “Best Ever Death Metal Band In Denton

I’ve been listening to the podcast I Only Listen to the Mountain Goats, which is a wonderful show about music, being …


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Goodnight, Writer’s Ledger. Hello, Pacemaker.

Posted on Mon 16 October 2017 in Dispatches • Tagged with development, writing • 2 min read

I’ve written here before about one of my side projects, a suite of productivity tools for writers called Writer’s Ledger. The idea began from a desire to convert the spreadsheets I use for tracking manuscripts to a reusable web app. The idea would be that you could define …


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Survey: How do fiction writers work?

Posted on Sun 10 September 2017 in Dispatches • Tagged with surveys, writing • 1 min read

Are you a fiction writer? Do you find yourself curious about how other writers work and track their progress? You are not alone.

I am fascinated by the processes that people use to blend their creative work with the business of making art. I’ve even dabbled with the idea …


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18 Essential Apps for Getting Shit Done

Posted on Tue 05 September 2017 in Dispatches • Tagged with assorted geekery, productivity, security, tech, writing • 10 min read

OMG, a workflow post! Apps, tools, productivity, oh my!

Listen, we all know that no app can make you more productive by itself. Your methods are always more important than your tools. But even knowing that, l love reading about what other people are using in their day to day …


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Office Atemi: it’s not all hugs and rainbows

Posted on Mon 31 July 2017 in Dispatches • Tagged with aikido, business, conflict, martial arts, self improvement • 3 min read

Since my post about Aikido at work a few months ago, I’ve received a number of questions that have the same theme. Take this one from reader Kevin:

I like what you’re saying about resolving conflict, but doesn’t that [mean] you’re always reactive? Where I work …


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