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Weblog Ontologies, Part 1

Weblog Ontologies, Part 1

I’ve been jotting down re-design ideas in my trusty paper notebook. On the Web there is an unwritten maxim: learn (steal?) from the best. So I decided to review some of the weblog ontologies/taxonomies on the Web that I admire. My method of review is informal and non-judgmental. I try to illustrate my findings with a test drive of each site. In…

Aesthetic Morality in the 21st Century

Aesthetic Morality in the 21st Century

Morality in art has always been a fascination of mine. And by art I mean literature, music, movies – the works. Some weblogs even. A favourite artist of mine is the great Canadian pianist Glenn Gould. One of Gould’s theories was that music should be judged on moral considerations rather than aesthetic ones. In an interview with himself, he told the…

Motivations: comparisons between novel-writing and blogging

Motivations: comparisons between novel-writing and blogging

I had written a long post describing my motivations for writing my novel, but on reflection I won’t publish it because it belongs more to my personal journal than on a public website. That is to say, it’s probably only relevant to me. But to sum up in a sentence: my main reasons for writing a novel were 1) to prove myself as a writer; and 2…

Reflections on writing a novel in 27 days – Part 1

Reflections on writing a novel in 27 days – Part 1

In November 2003 I embarked on a new adventure: writing a novel. I took part in Nanowrimo, an annual novel-writing challenge that takes place every November. Nanowrimo stands for ‘National Novel Writing Month’ and the task is to write a 50,000-word novel in 30 days. I first discovered Nanowrimo just 3 days before the 2003 edition started, while…

Re-design braindump 2: Ancillary or Primary

Re-design braindump 2: Ancillary or Primary

What’s your primary content? I felt a bit guilty about dissing Jason Kottke’s new design yesterday. I didn’t mean to be negative, actually I admire that he’s put all his content in one feed. It has its merits – for example readers only need to subscribe to the one RSS feed. The drawback though is ‘info overload’ for that RSS feed and readers may…

Dirtside to Spaceside – my novel in PDF form

Dirtside to Spaceside – my novel in PDF form

I’ve released the 0.9 version of my Nanowrimo novel, which I wrote in 27 days during November 2003. Apparently there were 3680 people all over the world crazy enough to successfully complete the Nanowrimo contest in 2003. So here’s my effort: Dirtside to Spaceside (PDF – 344KB) Shortly I will begin to write some thoughts on the processes I went…

Braindump of weblog re-design thoughts

Braindump of weblog re-design thoughts

I’m thinking about re-designing my weblog. While I was busy writing my novel in November, others were exploring the boundaries of the weblog form. Dave Winer re-designed his hugely influential blog, Mark Pilgrim did a re-design (and curiously, Dave and Mark’s blogs have ended up looking pretty similar – or maybe it’s just me!). Dave is doing a…

Liv Tyler waved at me

Liv Tyler waved at me

The world premiere of the Lord of the Rings was held in Wellington, New Zealand today – my hometown. Peter Jackson, the New Zealand director of the Rings trilogy, is from Wellington. He’s the King of Wellington as far as I’m concerned. And NZ’s capital city turned on a beautiful sunny day today for the premiere, temparature in the early 20’s and…

Dirtside to Spaceside – the novel

Dirtside to Spaceside – the novel

I’ve published my Nanowrimo novel on Read/Write Web as an HTML file. The PDF version will have to wait till Monday. I tried to use the Adobe Online Conversion service, but I couldn’t get the file size under 600KB for some reason (which is odd because the Word file is only 350KB). So I’ll use Distiller at my work on Monday. Update, Monday 1 Dec: A…

Nanowrimo Novel Finished!!!

Nanowrimo Novel Finished!!!

50,060 words. Completed in 27 days. The new name of my novel is: Dirt-side to Space-side. This is a NASA term for the Interplanetary Internet. I’ll post a PDF version of my novel in the next day or two (once I correct the spelling mistakes). Looks like I’m the second Nanowrimo winner from Wellington, New Zealand. Am feeling calm and happy…

Nanowrimo Day 26 – 96% done. One more day to go…

Nanowrimo Day 26 – 96% done. One more day to go…

The penultimate day. 48,011 words (ch. 54 onwards). One more night’s writing to go. I think I’m bringing together all the threads in time. I can’t wait to finish now, although I’ll probably miss it once I am finished. But I won’t miss the late nights and early mornings. It’s 1am as I write this. One day to go, one day to go, hee hee.

Nanowrimo Day 25 – 92% done

Nanowrimo Day 25 – 92% done

46,253 words. Here’s the latest (chapter 49 onwards). Two more nights to go and I’ll be finished. Yesterday was quite difficult and I wasn’t satisfied with my writing. I couldn’t get in The Zone. No flow mojo. Thankfully today was easier and I was back in rhythm. I even went back and patched up yesterday’s work a little bit. Perhaps it is nerves…

Day 23 – building now to an exciting conclusion

Day 23 – building now to an exciting conclusion

42,448 words – nearly 85% done. The end of chapter 46 is here, then I started a new page for chapter 47 onwards. While walking in the local park today, feeding the ducks on a lovely sunny breezy Sunday with my wife and two-year old daughter, I had some ideas for the ending of my novel. It’s amazing what fresh air will do. btw my wife said the other…

Day 22 (Sat morning)

Day 22 (Sat morning)

Saturday morning as I write this. I will have more words to contribute later this weekend, but for now I’m at 39,564 words. Here’s the latest (ch. 44 onwards).

Novel, Day 19

Novel, Day 19

36,119 words. Here’s the latest (ch.42 onwards). I’d be interested to know if anyone is reading this and if so, what are your thoughts. I don’t have much time to respond to your comments, but I do appreciate them.

Nanowrimo Day 18 – virtual worlds and avatars

Nanowrimo Day 18 – virtual worlds and avatars

34,094 words. The latest is here. Yesterday and today was spent writing a long chapter 41, where the main character Declan is inserted into a virtual world as an avatar. I surprised myself with some William Burroughs-like imagery to descibe the virtual world. It’s likely to need some tidying up when I finally get a chance to do a revision of my…

Day 16

Day 16

30,125 words. Chapter 37 onwards. Two weeks to go, at 10,000 words per week. I feel I’m on the home straight!

Nanowrimo Day 15 – plus some thoughts on categories and topics

Nanowrimo Day 15 – plus some thoughts on categories and topics

27,563 words. Here’s the latest (ch. 34 onwards). I’m hoping to reach the 30,000 mark by end of tomorrow. That will give me a nice round figure to aim for of 10,000 words per week for the final two weeks. I’m enjoying having two storylines intertwining now. On the one hand, Declan Atomz is now beginning to understand the alien world. It’ll be…

Nanowrimo Day 13 – nearly halfway there

Nanowrimo Day 13 – nearly halfway there

24,662 words – virtually 50% finished. Tonight’s words are chapter 32 onwards. Today was quite productive. The new storyline has energized me and is taking the overall story in an interesting direction. I’ll be taking a day off tomorrow. Fridays have been declared rest days by my wife, which is fair enough.

Day 12

Day 12

22,009 words – hanging in there (see ch. 31 onwards). Decided to introduce a sub-plot, to liven things up. It’s about a Silicon Valley graphics designer named Dave Darwin, who has just started a social software company. The themes of avatars and social software which I’m introducing here will eventually merge with Declan Atomz’s world of ETs and…