Here It Is!!

Hey guys!

I hope everyone’s projects are going well! Here is the final version of my project that I spent countless hours working on. I hope you enjoy it 🙂

http://laramurphy.postach.io

I am also going to link my Works Cited because Postach.io does not allow indenting. Lara Murphy Works Cited

Thank you to Katrina, Jacqueline, and Susan for editing my paper. I really appreciate all of your help!

Hope everyone has a relaxing holiday, we all deserve it!

Lara

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Reflection on “Writing in the Digital Age”

One of the most useful things “Writing in the Digital Age” has taught me is how XML and HTML works. I have never worked with either markup language prior to this course, but I view it as a very powerful tool to understand. From my new knowledge of these markup languages, I now know how to manipulate some sites to my preference. For example, at the beginning of the course I struggled with indenting paragraphs on WordPress. I googled the code to insert into the HTML to force my posts to stay indented once published. (Of course as I say this I now cannot get these paragraphs to stay indented! I swear I got it to work when trying to have the subsequent lines of references stay indented haha). I would have never known how to do this if we didn’t learn about the markup language. I think this knowledge will prove to be valuable, especially if I decide to work in the publishing field. It was kind of fun. I enjoyed that little game we played with the Bob Dylan song. However, I would have liked to spend a little more time on markup languages just to really explore and grasp the concept more fully.

I also now realize how important and helpful peer editing and peer feedback are. I really found the lightning and projects presentations valuable, as they allowed me to see what my project looked like from another point of view. My peer’s comments and suggestions helped me work through issues I was struggling with, and pushed me to think further in order to take my project to the next level. Speaking of presentations, I really enjoyed the demos as it allowed me to get a quick, but quite thorough, understanding of how multiple platforms work, what they have to offer readers and writers, and what it means to write digitally. I thought it was very interesting to look at the writing space provided by each platform, and how it affects the writing process. I agree there may have been one presentation too many in such a short period of time, but I honestly don’t know which one I could have gone without.

I loved the interactive literature. These Waves of Girls was my personal favourite, even though at times I found the linking confusing. I found the content interesting, and I liked close reading how the backgrounds of the text connected to the text.

Lastly, I think the final project really helped me to understand how different digital writing is. I enjoyed creating my final project, even though at times I was very frustrated with it, but I think it proved to be important. I also now know I can write 3500 words of valuable information, and organize my thoughts on a digital medium in an effective manner.

Thank you to everyone for a great semester!

Week 11: Kirschenbaum “Distant Mirrors and the LAMP”

1. “My dearest friends, there was. no. Google. You Yahooed—there’s no shame, we all did…” (Kirschenbaum).

I find this statement hilarious. What is a world without Google? Today, we rely SO heavily on Google, we almost cannot function without it. Remember that day a few weeks ago when the wifi was broken on campus? Think about how many times that day you couldn’t remember something or you had a question that you didn’t know the answer to, so you pulled up the Internet on your computer or phone to be reminded there was no connection available. Remember how frustrating that was? Imagine there being no Google everyday. It’s ridiculous to think about how much that would bother us. I feel like people are picky when it comes to what search engine they use. I know I only use Google just because I think it is sleeker. I think Kirschenbaum picks up on this because he reassures people that there’s no shame in using Yahoo, as it was something we all did because we had to (Kirschenbaum).

2. “…blogs and Twitter co-exist with one another in powerful mutually enabling ways” (Kirschenbaum).

I think this is very true. Today, there are not many bloggers that don’t list their social media on their blogs. Twitter is another platform where readers can interact and follow bloggers, as well as see any additional information the blogger posts on Twitter. Some bloggers may also link their blog or their blog posts on Twitter for easy access for their readers and followers, or to notify their followers that they have a blog. There are a few blogs that I occasionally read, but I don’t subscribe to them. Instead I either go to the blog to see if there is any new content or I follow the blogger on Twitter, and check there to see if they have linked any new posts.

3. Kirschenbaum brings up the question of how do we decide who we follow, and who we allow to follow us on social media? I think this is a great question. I have gotten friend requests on social media from people I have met once, people I have never met but we know of each other through mutual friends, and people I have come to know and would consider us friends online and in real life. I am also not friends with people on Facebook that I know well in real life simply because I don’t use Facebook as much anymore and I am too lazy to add them. I think a lot of young people seriously contemplate whom they should add on Facebook and follow on other platforms, and what it means if they add a person too soon after they first meet. Kirschenbaum says anyone who contemplates his or her relationships on social media so seriously probably has far bigger life problems, which I think it somewhat true. However, I think teenagers and young adults take their social media friendships so seriously because it is the age in which they grew up.

How would you cope if Google, Yahoo, and every other search engine permanently stopped working? Would you panic, experience a sense of relief, calmness?

Kirschenbaum, Matthew. “Distant Mirrors and the LAMP.” MLA Commons.

Commons.mla.org, 2013. Web. 23 Nov. 2015.

Week 10

I find Fitzpatrick’s anxieties about writing easy to relate to on multiple levels.

1. Fitzpatrick says how difficult it is for her to discuss her writing before it is finished. She says part of the difficulty is that “someone else’s opinions might interfere with my thought processes” (Fitzpatrick 20). I can totally relate to this frame of mind with my own writing. As much as talking out an essay topic, for example, can be helpful and provide clarity, I also feel discussing ideas with others can cause me a lot of confusion, especially if I have already begun writing. Sometimes, when I hear other people’s ideas before I’ve had time to fully understand my own, I become overwhelmed, and question if what I am thinking are even plausible thoughts.

2. “The existence of such an enormous selection of guides to the academic writing process suggests…that we believe that someone out there knows how to be a successful author” (Fitzpatrick 20).

I find this quote funny. I have definitely googled, once or twice, something along the lines of “how to be a successful author.” I have full trust in authors of academic self-help books or sites because I have anxiety about my own writing, and I believe they know how to be successful authors.

3. “…each of us lives with a host of anxieties about writing and about ourselves as writers…” (Fitzpatrick 20).

I think it is important to note that even though Fitzpatrick is a successful author, she still has anxiety about her writing. I think her confession makes her more relatable to anyone who writes.

What aspects of Fitzpatrick’s work did you find relatable, if any at all?

Fitzpatrick, Kathleen. “Authorship.” Planned Obsolescence: Publishing, Technology, and

            The Future of the Academy. 2009: 20-28. Web.

 

Week 9

I really enjoyed reading Guy Patrick Cunningham’s piece on writing in fragments. He really draws the reader into his work with his first lines, “More and more, I read in pieces. So do you” (Cunningham “Fragmentary: Writing in a Digital Age”). His way of acknowledging the reader within his first two sentences I think really captures and engages the reader into realizing that they too read in fragments, like Cunningham. Cunningham says the hyperlinks and ads that break text up are neither bad or good, which I think is a solid way to approach this topic, as it avoids binary thinking. As he says, reading in pieces is just a part of how we read today. I love the resemblance created between the images contained in Samuel Beckett’s “Text 2” and human memories, as humans tend to only remember specific parts of an event, and therefore our memories are of a fragmentary nature. When reading the excerpt of “Text 2” one can really imagine the images described, as well as hear the “voice” that is embedded in the text, which I think does very much echo a human memory. Later in the article Cunningham mentions how he has read Hamlet multiple times, and when he “remembers” the play it is certain lines that he thinks of. This reinforces how the human memory is of fragmented nature, as one remembers smaller pieces when thinking of a larger picture.

I find the mention of rereading interesting. Cunningham says that Beckett wrote in a time when rereading was widely encouraged, therefore, his writing probably reflected that idea. I feel people today don’t reread books, articles, etc. nearly as much as in the past. Why is this? I find it really interesting that Cunningham copied out fragments of Shields’ Reality Hunger so when he wants to “reread” it, he has his own private version to jog his memory. Cunningham believes Shields’ wants the reader to interact with the work, which brings to mind blogging in which the reader is encouraged to comment and leave links etc. He brings up the concept of “retweeting” on Twitter, which I think creates fragmentation, as I cannot count the number of times I have become distracted from clicking on tweets other people have retweeted.

What do you think of fragmented reading? Do you have any other modern examples (such as Twitter) that apply?

Cunningham, Guy Patrick. “Fragmentary: Writing in a Digital Age.” The Millions.

The Millions, 24 January 2012. Web. 7 November 2015.

Week 8

An aspect of this week’s reading that really struck me was from Drucker’s “Humanities Approaches to Interface Theory,” in which she says we make sense of information by relating it to other pieces of information. We can do this by, “stitching fragments of what are graphically related elements together into a narrative” or by “making our way through unrelated fragments until some chain of compelling connections captures our attention” (Drucker 4). This is something I never think about, but is totally true. This is the pattern we follow when trying to make connections and correlations, and I cannot even count the number of times where I have wondered what the relevance or connection is between fragments and then a certain detail is unveiled and everything all of a sudden makes sense. Drucker says that we expect elements in a story to make sense and mesh because of comic books and movies assisting those expectations (4). I think we have these expectations because why would we be paying to view a movie or comic book that didn’t have a storyline that was connected? All details ultimately seem to have a purpose, whether that is initially clear or not. However, the Internet does not have a “pre-existing narrative” (4) to help us to try to make connections. There are so many options and combinations available on the web that it can be disorienting to try to understand the relationships between images, texts, videos, layouts etc. especially since they are different medias. I think it is amazing that our brains are able to make these connections in order to understand and navigate all the possibilities available to us. I think this is an example of “subject of interface” because interface is seen as a “dynamic space of relations” instead of a “thing” (Drucker 3).

Are “pre-existing narratives,” such as comic books or movies, which help us make connections and understand correlations something you regularly think about?

Drucker, Johanna. “Humanities Approaches to Interface Theory.” Culture Machine 12

2011: 1-20. Web. 1 November 2015.