Some reflection and description about the little writing ecology I’ve got here in my cubicle, filtered through the specific routine that gets me from booting up the computer into deep in my workflow. The morning computer routine:
–Plug it in and turn it on. I use my university-provided hp EliteBook, which has a docking station to which I’ve attached a widescreen monitor and all the necessary peripherals (mouse, speakers, wireless keyboard, etc.)
–Skype (mostly for TTU colleagues) and Microsoft Lync (for McM colleagues) open automatically. I minimize, as I don’t expect to use either very much today. (Though I’ve got an appointment with my chair at 12)
–quickly (usually) check facebook for important or funny message
–sort/delete/reply to email in Outlook (for McM, students prioritized first) and Gmail (for personal and TTU use, which usually runs in the background all day.)
–check to-do list, which is integrated with Gmail; this is my long-term to-do list, of things that have deadlines (rather than abstract or non-time-sensitive tasks and ideas, which go into the pile of assorted color post-its right below my monitor)
–open iTunes/Spotify (depending on musical preference; I’ve recently finished a nice heavy metal playlist for when I’m reading/writing, so it’s Spotify today)
–open 2-3 Google docs (today is reading list notes page for Gee and Hayes’ “Language and Learning in the Digital Age” and the draft of an RSA panel proposal I’m collaborating on)
–pull up this wordpress blog for later publishing of notes/summaries
–today, the next step is to compose, polish, and publish this digital writing journal entry. A task of no more than 20 minutes.
–my task of no more than 20 minutes is interrupted by a brief conversation with two other “residents” of our still-new “Cubicle Village” (as it’s begun to be called) about where to hang chalkboards and dry-erase boards around our large space. I’m glad I’m there–I suggest hanging one of the chalkboards in the small, private conference room attached to the larger area. It’ll double as an impromptu teaching space for student conferences, mostly, and I am certain that I as well as the mathematics faculty nearby will make good use of it there.
–Get After It. Today’s main tasks alternate between reading Gee and Hayes and working on the RSA panel. I’ve also got syllabi to prepare, but those can wait until next week, I think. I’ve got that genre pretty much down, thought I’m using new texts in some classes and need to tweak a few things.
–I’ve got a deal with myself not to open Google Reader to scan the blogs and news feeds of the day until well after lunch, after I’ve accomplished my main tasks for the day. I used to get in trouble with myself for reading blogs all afternoon, and I’m actively trying to resist that trouble, so I live in a media/news hole.
–During this season of reading list and quals prep, I don’t open TweetDeck. When I finish with a book and update my status to reflect that in Goodreads, it posts to Twitter automatically. Otherwise, I’m basically on twitter hiatus except for responding to @s and DMs as they (so rarely) come in.
–I’m not as good with Facebook. I check it on and off throughout the day, and will not be able to do that when the semester starts (unless I want to be a doctoral student for-ev-er). Expect a FB hiatus of sorts in the near future.