I have been thinking about what someone was saying the other day in class, how writing in the margins connects the book to the reader, and basically how all real readers write in the margins. But I would disagree with this. I never, ever, write in the margins. I don’t even like to highlight my textbooks. I think of books as sacred in this way. I like to keep them perfect. I think writing in them disgraces them, so the different interpretations of how we interact with books is very interesting.
In class the other day, we were discussing how poems and plays are read less and less and seen as less important. While I don’t disagree with this, I just thought of an interesting short anecdote I would like to share.
I am an avid Pinterest-er. I, like most millennial ‘basic’ girls, happen to have a quote board on said Pinterest page. Through this, I started seeing a lot of quotes that I liked by a specific author. I ended up buying two of her books that were a collection of poems! So I think it is interesting that digital technology, specifically a form of social media, made me more interested in poems than I had ever been previously.
I think that close reading is a skill that has to be developed over the years. It’s why we push reading programs for children, especially over the summer, so that they can keep developing their skills. We do this so that by the time they get to high school they can start fully developing these close reading skills and be better prepared for college when they need to be able to quickly read and analyze text every day.
I think that it is 100% possible to read too much into a text. If you over analyze a text, you will end up missing what the author intended for you to take away. If you think too much into it, you could end up changing your perception of whatever you are reading and changing it to whatever lens you came into the text with.
Zotero is so helpful! I have really liked working with it so far. Before, how I did research, was to just bookmark every page I used, and often would leave them all up in my browser (inevitably slowing it down as well) until the paper was over. This is a much better alternative. I never had cite my sources, usually I use a website like citation machine, but Zotero is better at getting the information than citation machine is, so it makes for even less work for me, which is always appreciated!
For my final project, I am hoping to do a project instead of a paper, if given permission. I would like to make a digital children’s book to show my research on how digital books are better for learning than print books. I think that using a children’s book as a medium for this would be an overall metaphor because after all, children are the future. I would like to do a project instead of a paper because as a digital studies minor, I think that it would make for a better capstone project and be more representative of the minor than a paper would.
Field Journal- Day 75
My project of coding books has been going well. I have helped the group get quite a following. John’s goal of a Literary Enlightenment might actually be possible.
I have decided to have my pupils do a reading of some of their work. I’m hoping that they’re friends will attend, and stay after to listen to our information on reading and writing. My only issue with it is publicizing. We have to be careful, it is illegal after all.
Field Journal Day 65-
I have gotten around the “no books” rule here by using code. I am teaching my students to write by coding. We code books, but break just one part of the code, so that it does not publish and isn’t searchable. I’m not sure if there will be a way for them to detect and find this, but so far, the government has not. It was a little difficult to learn how to code a novel, but not too hard. It is certainly easy to know how to break the code though!
A common theme in the past few years has been to take literary work, or quotes from famous authors, and adapt them into a format that is popular of the day. Often, this is in the form of memes. The local bookstore here, Riverby, has a quote from Hemingway adapted into a popular format. (It also appears to be integrated into their Dewey Decimal system, which is pretty cute).
When first introducted to NaNoGenMo, we were asked to explore the site and find and ‘learn’ one enough to show the class. In my process I found some interesting ones, but my favorite one was one that was never actually completed. The creator’s intention was to use their Facebook feed to generate a novel, and I was really intrigued by that idea. In the future, will Facebook, or other social media’s, be accessed and used for biographies and history books? Probably. There might even be books made of just a famous person’s timeline-especially if it was from a private account.
The story we looked at in class, that was one word/phrase after another, but not the whole thing together, was interesting. I wasn’t a fan of it for a normal novel, but I think it would be cool to incorporate in some futuristic twist of what we currently know as a book. It reminded me of the interactive fiction module that I worked on for my digital studies class.