Writing. How, why, when and what?


Today I’m running a session on our new Masters in Career Education and Coaching.  I’m planning to talk to the students about the process of writing. In it I’m going to try and argue that writing is not just a weird arbitrary process that academics force students to go through for reasons of masochistic joy. Rather writing is an integral part of how we think, solve problems and develop ideas.

This is what I thought that I’d cover…

Writing. How, why, when and what?

Stuart Lee – On not writing

Writing is important to me. I think about it a lot and do it a lot less. But, I still do it a lot more than some.

I don’t have pretentions to art – but I am always interested to hear other people talking about writing.

So here is Stuart Lee talking about how he goes about writing and the particular opportunities and constraints that stand up offers.

Lee does a lot of grumpy old man posturing, so I’m never sure exactly how to take him. But, I definately feel that the world of social media/blogging etc opens up far more opportunities for writers to find some space to hawk their wares. Some might say that isn’t a good thing, but I enjoy the opportunity to write for an audience of one and am constantly surprised when someone else is reading. Obviously for all his moaning, Lee has a devoted audience who lap up his writing. But, for me the idea of audience is more important than the reality. By this I mean that writing for yourself is a particular form that is very different from writing for others. I’m a natural show off so I always write for others, even when in actual fact there is no one there to read it.

Anyway over to the wisdom of Stuart Lee…

Book update: Now looking for stuff on online ethnography

Days until delivery of the manuscript: 15

Number of words written: 8165

We’ve had a pretty good weekend’s progress on our online research methods book. Still lots to do, but the whole thing is starting to come together. I’m now moving on to look at online ethnographies -so if anyone can give me any hints or tips on that, it would be great.

If you want to see what I’ve got already or are interested in the area you might want to have a look at my online ethnographies tag on citeulike.

Online research methods book

Days to delivery of the manuscript: 30

Number of words written: 0

I’m writing a book about online research methods. I thought that I’d tell the world to try and incentivise my writing. If I’m a bit slow in getting back to you on emails etc over the next month cut me some slack.

I have actually got lots of bits and pieces written, but at the moment I haven’t fitted any of it together. I thought I’d track the process of writing here.

What I have done that might be usefult to other people is pull together a vast amount of literature on the subject of online research methods. I’m currently working on a chapter that is concerned with online focus groups and online interviews. If anyone can suggest any other literature on these topics it would be very helpful.  

Wish me luck and I’ll keep you updated…