What I wanted to do here was display my new found bravery in the creative sphere and offer you a cool infographic or other excellently crafted visual that would show you what a great time I had being a part of Digital Writing Month (#DigiWriMo).
The truth is, I don’t have that kind of time. I could have tried speaking it but that would have meant having to listen to my own voice. I’ll save that torture for another day. I might have found a cool template on one of these sleek graphic tools that are all the rage and simply fill in the blanks. But you know what happens there. You spend all this time trying to get your icons all facing in the right direction, your fonts all neatly aligned and before you’ve even addressed the content two hours have flown by and you have, like, nothing.
So I am back to words and lists and narrative. At least I know my way around here.
Here was my November 2015 in #DigiWriMo:
[Actually, I got a head start in late October with the warm-up activity to create an alternative CV. Couldn’t resist that one.)
November 1st: Turned 50
November 2nd: my guest contributor post, Author, Audience and Parts of Speech, kicked off digitalwritingmonth.com
November 2nd-7th: I encountered the warmth, generosity and openness of the #DigiWriMo community as expressed in comments, tweets & retweets on my post. It was a joy to respond and interact and meet some of the crew. I received TWO poems in response to that post and I still am blown away by that. Poetry, y’all.
In the second week, the emphasis was on visual expression in digital writing. Right off the bat in Kevin Hodgson’s introduction to the visual as a theme I found a spark to explore the novel Wonderstruck by Brian Selziek. Then I was inspired by Kim Douillard’s post to add a photo of my corner of the sky to a collaborative collection titled: Our Eyes on the Skies.
By Nov. 11th I was ready to follow Troy Hicks’ pointers and consider producing my first infographic. Although initially at at loss as to what I would want to demonstrate, as I let myself play with the tool, the actual content announced itself in due time.
Here is what emerged: DigiWriMo2015(2)
By the time week three rolled around and the focus was on using sound in writing, well, let me just say, I had my reservations. Not about the relevance and possibilities but simply my own capabilities to build this aspect into what I already do. Once again, the community had my back and the guest contributors that week provided the encouraging nudges that led me to share this post: Shhhh! An Audio Revelation. And revelation was not at all an exaggeration – being able to listen to the opening of a number of different classes was so revealing and fascinating. How do I actually manage to get a group of 16 five-year-olds to settle down long enough to give some instructions? How do we negotiate those openings with each other?
In the process, I also learned how to use Sound Cloud and audiocopy. My #DigiWriMo treasure chest continues to grow. Along the way I discovered so many great voices and perspectives which gave me both pause and inspiration. In the final week when the emphasis was on transmedia expression I found that I had indeed hit a wall of sorts. The notion of “transmedia” somehow overwhelmed me at that moment, in that week, although the whole month long I had been doing precisely that in bits and pieces. Once again, the community was right there with me offering both understanding and opportunity. In the final guest post, “It All Falls Apart,” Anna Smith documented and shared her production process in creating her transmedial oevre “Pieces.” In my comment I was able to give voice to the odd uneasiness I was feeling for not having gone “the whole nine yards,” as they say. And I was able to sum up what this month of creative community meant for me:
#digiwrimo is more than a number of days, more than a collection of interested and interesting people, more than the numerous artifacts which were created under its auspices. For me, #digiwrimo has become a frame of mind that I want to hold onto: a reminder to dare to experiment and contribute to communities of play and experimentation, digital and otherwise.
Just like that, it’s suddenly December and all manner of fresh engagements fill up my calendar (and probably yours, too). But #DigiWriMo as an experience, as a source of inspiration, as extraordinary meeting of the minds – will remain with me. Practicing “being the audience I want to have” is an ongoing commitment and one I gladly honor. It’s the frame of mind that will grow along with me. For that I am immensely grateful.
6 thoughts on “My #DigiWriMo 2015”
I love words on the page … thanks for bringing us into your experience.
I really enjoy reading your posts Sherri. Your style is very, hmm not sure what’s the best word to use but, thoughtful, calming, happy, are the first words that come to my mind. I loved your guest post which to me was the perfect way to start a month that I both dreaded and was excited to jump in (I am not a writer, from a traditional text writing point of view… Yet?). “Being the audience I want to have” was the phrase that stood out for me and I made it my goal for the month. It was a reminder to do something that I already enjoyed doing but didn’t have a name for until I saw your phrase. I think as a trainer I am audience to the learners — I believe all kinds of educators are — as I observe, comment, hold them and their ideas, offer feedback, share, help them be audience to each other, celebrate successes. During the DigiWriMo we are all learners and we are all teachers which to me means it is only natural that we are all audience as well. Your phrase reminded me to do it deliberately so that it is not just a reaction or a token but is from the heart. (I really like that phrase, I am sure you can tell) 🙂
I am sorry for the long response but I think this makes it more like a conversation :). Later I can, if I feel that I need to, add it to my reflections on my own blog. But I thought I will have a conversation with you first. 🙂
Thank you, thank you, thank you for this wonderfully genuine response. I am humbled. And please, no apologies for the length of your comment. Your words, thoughts, ideas need, require, and demand space. So claim that space fully. As women we may need extra practice in doing that, so I find that ‘being audience’ is one area where I feel more comfortable using and occupying space. Maybe because it’s a form of giving. And that’s a socially condoned way for women to use space. Hmmm…
All this writing and responding has so many layers, keeping track of what we mean when can get confusing. I’m glad we connected through #digiwrimo and I look forward to enaging with you on Twitter and beyond. Again, my gratitude for your thoughtful comment is huge.
You said “so I find that ‘being audience’ is one area where I feel more comfortable using and occupying space. Maybe because it’s a form of giving. And that’s a socially condoned way for women to use space. Hmmm…”
This made me think about several questions. There are those questions that I’d been bouncing around my mind but was not really in a hurry to have a concrete and final answer for, if concrete and final was even at all possible; there are new ones that your words brought about, questions that I’d never even thought about but now I am intrigued by; then there is one question that keeps jumping up to take center stage in my mind, on and off, that has started lately to become increasingly urgent, at least to me
I hope that we can start a conversation or more around some or all of those questions if they resonate with you. But I think I will share the questions when I have a bit more time and don’t have to rush. 🙂
Oh, Maha, this is an invitation I will gladly take you up on. I am intrigued by and look forward to hearing your questions and finding out how they are poking, prodding and otherwise moving you. Let’s find a forum that fits and carve out time. I am all in.
Sorry I got distracted with things again on and offline 🙂 but I haven’t forgotten my questions or the plan to have a chat.
I know that it may be a hectic time now with family and friends during holidays but I thought to check with you if you have a preference of space for the chat.
Have great holidays 🙂