Silly summations

One moment, your words shine proudly in cyberia. Then with the hapless application of chmod, the same summations summarily cease.  Then, when you pray to the gods of the ether, the digital data come back.

Pick up that Unix book — that’s all I can say.

Book publishing and financial advice that cuts to daily life

Food for thought in BookExpo America – Column – New York Times as I prepare to publish my first book and contemplate future books:

    Chris Anderson, the editor of Wired magazine who made his own splash last year with his book “The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business is Selling Less of More,” returned to the convention to talk about the possibility of giving away online his next book — which he fittingly intends to title “Free” — to readers who were willing to read it with advertisements interspersed throughout its pages. (He still intends to sell the book traditionally to readers who’d rather get their text without the ads.)

Though the financial advice in More Advice Graduates Don’t Want to Hear – New York Times is aimed at graduates, the article is useful for people like me, who is currently living off savings as I pursue the life of a self-employed author and consultant:

    I also suggested cutting out the latte habit, which was my symbol for those little things in life that when turned into a habit, add up to money that could have been spent on something worthwhile and memorable. Other people, my wife among them, pointed out that I may have been too draconian on that point. Consistent savings is a lot easier if there are small rewards along the way; otherwise, life seems as if it is just one bowl of cold grass porridge after another.

I rather enjoy my writing times sitting in cafes. I think of that time as paying rent for a home away from home.

The importance of narrative — and redemption

This Is Your Life (and How You Tell It) – New York Times:

    By contrast, so-called generative adults — those who score highly on tests measuring civic-mindedness, and who are likely to be energetic and involved — tend to see many of the events in their life in the reverse order, as linked by themes of redemption [emphasis mine]. They flunked sixth grade but met a wonderful counselor and made honor roll in seventh. They were laid low by divorce, only to meet a wonderful new partner. Often, too, they say they felt singled out from very early in life — protected, even as others nearby suffered.

The work redemption caught my eye since it very much fits with the way I have seen my own past.