Friday, August 19, 2016

Life of SurprisesAplenty and plans for the future

I am unemployed.

I am looking for work and a white-skinned English speaker in Korea with a clean record will always find work.  I would prefer to work at a university, as I have for more than 12 years, but I will to settle in the short term for more ... work.

A quick discussion of ESL teaching at a Korean university:   Honestly and sadly, the single best part of being a 'professor' (some universities bestow that title, while others stick with the more honest 'instructor') is how little there is.
At my last university, I worked twelve to sixteen hours a week, thrity weeks a year.  Those were class-time hours and I had other duties, but they weren't scheduled and repetition reduced their volume greatly.  And naturally, I worked off campus, but when I wanted a month or two to do something else, I had it, and was paid.
The students were polite and many, even most, wanted to learn but few were driven or excited by the non-major, mandatory ESL classes.
At children's after-school classes, the English being displayed was not much lower than that of my uni students; the biggest difference was that, instead of being too active and disruptive in class, my uni students were too sleepy.
Teaching at an extended learning school for adults was great; the students were eager and since they were paying, they focused on the material and tried to use English.  On the other hand, classes for adults are scheduled early and late; I used to teach 6:30 to 12:00 pm and again in the evening 5:00 to 9:30pm.

Back to me and this blog.

I want to be a professional writer.  I am trying to write every day but it is so easy to leave my writing for later and later until there is no more later left and I go to sleep. This is my chance to see if I can do it.  I've completed Nanowrimo a few times but I haven't completed a book.
I started this blog because I was curious about what it means to be creative.  It became a diary and study notes on creativity research.  I want this blog to continue in these functions but advice from authors and creatives is that I need to be in the public eye and producing interesting content as a way to promote my style or brand or self so that a future, hypothetical book will sell the first few copies.
There is an author I follow on Twitter and I have mentioned this person on my blog, how recycles posts. This probably means the author has more time to write the books that pay the bills but I think it reduces the value of the author's social media outreach.  I digressed lengthily on ESL teaching so I'll save my thoughts on social media outreach for another post, but I want my posts here to be fun, to be of Goldilocks length and not to get in the way of my book writing.

Here are my ideas.  As I work these out, I will likely assign specific days to  individual ideas but for now, I will work through the list once or a few times to see how they work out.

Creativiti ideas:
Clickbait answers and guesses I have found links and suggestive images as 'promoted content' at the bottom of various blogs. They are often of the, "How did this woman become a millionaire at age 25?" and a picture of a woman showing a whole lot of leg in a luxury car.  I am going to see if I can guess how or why "Doctors don't want you to see this video!"  I may actually follow the link and read or watch that video but I don't think I need to.

Exploring Incheon I am unemployed because my wife was transferred to a new city, Incheon, and I followed her here. In my fifteen-odd years in Korea, I have visited Incheon only once so now I can be a tourist again and explore a city that is far less grimy than I had been led to believe.  This will not necessarily be 'creative' but perhaps my photos will be of exhibition quality.

TWIC Naturally, I will continue This Week In Creativity, where I post a number of links to relevant material.  In the past, this has been to author's blogs, archives of public domain images and somewhat scientific articles on the study of creativity.

Evolution I have another blog, one focused on evolution and creationism.  I will try to post material there on a weekly basis and post a link to this blog for anyone interested in the subject.

Education Can you teach someone to be creative? Can you teach so as not to damage your student's creativity?  I have written on the subject before (and given lectures and seminars on the subject) and you can expect more of the same.

Animals I was joking earlier about 'exhibition quality' photos.  I have some eye for framing but my images are typically more educational than stylish or artistic.  Still, when you take a lot of pictures, a few turn out pretty well.  Expect images of local animals here.

Book reviews As a wannabe writer, reading is a good way to learn the craft.  I read a lot but tend to skim through a book. Case in point, despite all my reading, I still have trouble with basic grammar and punctuation.  I don't expect this to become a grammar blog but I will write about ideas found in different books and how the authors describe things.

So, these are my goals.  Let's see what happens!

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