i once hear that some sidewalks are designed to encourage the walker to slow down and to enjoy the shops, sights and diversions of their walks. similarly, i find that certain cafes also encourage their patrons to cozy up with a good book so that they can really savor their beverage in a pleasant atmosphere.
where are these places online?
many websites i visit are all about speed (maybe i’m just spending my time in all the wrong places). google returns search results quickly, twitter is rapid fire of news, opinions, and images. facebook is, well, garbage. but, funnily enough i don’t spend that much time on medium either. even though it is supposedly designed to be that breath of fresh air on the internet, there is very little vetting for the quality of the content i am reading. more often than not, i feel like everyone is selling something, so i trust nothing.
now, i am in a cafe with a book, and i don’t feel like anyone is trying to fuck with me or mine me for information. where are these places on the internet where you can simply pass the time?
youtube comes to mind. youtube! an endless sea of content with varying degrees of intensity and engagement. i have the option to turn on lo fi hip hop beats, or open a video of someone making pastries in japan. this might be exactly what i needed in the first place. however, i do not enjoy watching youtube in a coffee shop – for some reason i need it to be a more private experience.
youtube is also passive, in contrast to reading, which takes active effort for decoding symbols into ideas. reading a book in a cafe is doing something, while watching youtube is letting something happen to you.
i don’t really know they answer, but i am always looking for ways to slow down and enrich my experience on the internet. i am biased towards books (one of my first and longest standing loves) but i hope there are places on the internet where i can get the same kind of peace and engagement that i do with a good book. maybe it is games – video games along with the games of organizing my documents or making websites or learning to code.
as we saw yesterday, writing is fun, but it doesn’t pay very much. it’s a little bit of a slower medium as well, which is generally a good thing unless you are writing a non-fiction book.
but i believe in it, which puts me in the tricky place of trying to find a way to get paid to write. it’s not easy, and the options i have are pretty bleak. my best bet so far is to continue making content for no pay, since i know firsthand how annoying ads are. what is a young writer to do? i’m not entirely sure.
i want to make more podcasts and video, which i think is possible but also a bit difficult when i’m working from a chromebook and a laptop. but dangit i’m going to keep trying.
if you’re digging the vibe, please consider buying me a coffee on ko-fi, or checking out my patreon. i know i mentioned this before, and i’ll be sure to ease up on this soon. but the boost helps, especially when i am figuring out the next direction for getting good information to you.
i recently started streaming on twitch. this is a messy platform that reminds me of myspace, since it has a lot of room for interactive customization. in reading about twitch, i learned that there is a quieter side to the platform that is not entirely focused on gaming. some folks knit. others read. some draw. me? i’m seeing if i can collaboratively write a tv script via livestream.
it’s an experiment, and i don’t know how it’s going to pan out. i know i need my schedule to be consistent, and i know i have to work out some logistical problems with sharing what’s on my screen, but i love working on platforms that are still growing and figuring out what they are. because in a sense, so am i.
it’s easy to think that our brains work like books – everything written out in a linear fashion, with clear connections from one thing to another. this is flat out not the case. our brains connects information using a myriad of different channels, and this web of connectivity is changing and, by definition, creative.
sometimes words of phrases stick. it might be a jingle or something a friend mentioned at dinner yesterday. sometimes it’s an idea that i read in a book long ago. but at any given moment, i’m juggling these bits of information in my head, playing with them, in order to see if any of them fit in nicely to my present situation.
sometimes, a lot of these echoes fit in all at once, and i call that an epiphany. what echoes are floating around your head? do you have any ideas that you can’t shake?
i want things to happen very quickly, and unfortunately that’s an unrealistic expectation. so, i need to develop systems to ensure that i don’t get ahead of myself. one of those things is making a considered effort to slow down. another is giving myself projects that i can complete very quickly, or in a day. if i divide a project up into these specific chunks of constructions, suddenly i’ll have a big final product at the end.
i always forget this, the fact that what we do with our lives is what we do with our days. routines, then, help dramatically with my ability to finish a huge task. i know i will spend a little time every day, and this gives me comfort and allows me to envision the final project. for example, if i write a book, i need to know that i will write 600 words a day, and i need to know that i will have time every day to do that specific thing.
right now, i lack direction because i don’t clearly see my end goal. so i am gathering information and trying to build up my plan. it is loose, there are a ton of tangents, but i know that if i make at least one thing today, i’ll be that much closer to having a fully fleshed out final project a year from now.