Creative writing 2

So about that creative writing…

Thing is, as I’ve mentioned before, I have this desire to produce more writing.
However so far the only real outcome have been a few status updates and tweets along with 3 or 4 blog post drafts (my first ever drafts that haven’t actually materialized into anything concrete or been deleted).

But now I’m starting to feel the results of this lack of writing. At
Work I’m responsible for publishing a magazine in which I have to write a part of the stories. That in itself is sort of cool as I end up with published material, however I keep encountering the same issue as with everywhere else… I am a rather mediocre storyteller!

In an attempt to do something about it I recently started following a fiction video production course at open university at Copenhagen University. I obviously have other reasons as well, or I’d be better off taking a dedicated writing class.

So far the outcome has been negligible in regards to my story telling abilities but it has made me realize something else. I enjoy producing objects, be it film, magazine or other, but I want them to be of a high visual quality.

This puts me at a crossroad of sorts – a crossroad most managers have found themselves at when they became managers. Do I rely only on my own production to ensure the high quality or do I bring in others for the things I have no grasp on (like story)?
Most people will probably (or is it hopefully?) think it a stupid question. You of course go with the second option and bring in people who posses the specific skills you lack yourself and let rely in their expertise. However there can be certain challenges with this option.
Firstly you do not always have the resources to bring in the desired talent.
Secondly how do you figure out how much you can demand of them. This especially becomes relevant if you like me work a lot with volunteers.

So far I’ve gone with the first option for multiple reasons:
1) I like to challenge myself and learn new skills
2) I’m often quite late in starting my processes, which means it can be hard getting other people involved as they need a decent amount of time before a deadline and finally
3) I feel a greater pride in something that I have fully produced than something I’ve just lead the production of.

This brings me back to my original premise for this post, namely that of the creative writing.
With creative writing I do not just refer to the act of writing fiction but the act of telling a story that has an overall progressing storyline which has a beginning, a middle and an end.
And today it hit me while working and again during my fiction video production course. Even if I do not create all the pieces, the act of creating a high quality object like a magazine or a film does in fact still require my definition of creative writing as their high quality is mainly defined (as mostly everything else ) by their ability to tell an overarching story.

In fact I believe that this is also what characterizes a good manager. The ability to guide your employees enough that they will work towards creating a story where the whole is greater than the sum of the parts.

Pointless presenting

Today I’ve been working on a presentation that I’m giving tomorrow but have found it hard to get it right.

For a long time I’ve tried rearranging the slides, splitting slides up into more slides to make them less cluttered and adding notes to lead me from one slide to the next. Yet so far the presentation lacks that certain something that ensures it’s not a powerpointless.

So what is it missing? Suddenly I realized that it miss exactly the same as all my other writing… a personal story. Instead it’s just a bunch of facts and figures.

After that realization I started over from scratch to ensure that I actually would be telling a story rather than just listing from a fact sheet. But that is pretty hard, when you realize you’re not a storyteller. That also made it blatantly clear to me, why I’m always hard pressed to do really well in exams… my line of thought is never straight and I’m not always able to focus on the most important details.

The downside of course is that I need to put a lot more time into preparation than other people.
The upside however is, that by not thinking in a coherent story I often get quirky “out of the box” ideas, that encourages others to exercise their creativity.

So what about tomorrow’s presentation?
Well hopefully it won’t be pointless, but for it not to be I’m afraid I’ll have to wing it with the last third of my story!

A weekend of gaming

This weekend I did something I haven’t done for quite some time. I had a LAN-party. Friday I met up with a friend to hang out, and before I knew it we’d decided that we were gonna do some gaming.

Since neither of us had done any gaming in a while, starting a game took longer than expected. So to actually do any gaming we decided to play on through part of the night and I’d just sleep on his couch.

Well that one night on the couch ended up being the entire weekend and about 30 hours of Civilization V.

Now Sunday night I’m back in my own bed and realizing that I put so much into the game that I totally didn’t write a post a day as I had promised myself… but I don’t care, ’cause I had more fun than ice had in quite a while.

So thanks Mark and look forward to doing this again soon.

You can not eat an elephant in one bite

After pouring my heart out to my good friend Søren and telling him how frustrated I am about not doing anything with my spare time he told me to get a grip… well not exactly but that’s what I did none the less.

One of the attempts I’ve been making lately is to improve my writing skills. And following some sane advice the only way of getting better at writing is to actually do it. So here I am writing. And that leads me back to why I brought up my discussion with my friend. My issue with writing so fat has been that I don’t feel like I have anything to write about. My biggest interest at the moment is keeping up with tech news and so that would be an obvious area to write about. But so far I don’t feel like I have anything to add to the already rather extensive coverage taking place on sites like Engadget and This is my next… What Søren made me realize was that so far my writing has been very much focused on being factual, while the personal stories are the interesting ones.

So now to the title of the post. If I want to improve my writing it isn’t gonna happen in one go. I will have to start writing to actually do any good writing, and I’ll start writing about my experiences instead of just trying to relay some factual information or story.

So this marks my attempt to do one blog post a day for a minimum of 10 days.

Wish me luck!