The Thrill of New Things
No, I’m not talking about shopping although that’s excellent, too. In the past two weeks I have learned more new skills than I have in the past two years. They’re simple skills, but that doesn’t matter, they’re NEW. And suddenly, I am a New Skill Junkie. I’m bright, I’m happier, and god knows, I’m more productive just because I have all these new things I can do.
It’s also shown me how much free instruction there is on the internet. I’ve been using Google forever to answer questions, but I never watched many instructional videos–very short attention span–until suddenly I needed fast instruction in Keynote animation. And you know how it is when you Google, one thing leads to another. Google: the potato chip bag of the internet.
And it’s not just research that leads to another thing. I had the rough Keynote presentations done for my first three lectures, so I was feeling pretty cocky. Then I started writing the script for the first one–thirty-two slides–and realized that I’d missed some good details, so I went back and added some more slides. But then I realized that some of the graphics I’d added could be really good illustrations of those concepts so I added some more slides. Then I did an outline and realized that I could focus those concepts better, so I rearranged and edited slides. Then I rewrote the script and added some more slides. Then I did the notebook and realized that I could add a couple more slides for clarity. Then I did the workbook . . . . One hundred and eighty-one slides. In half an hour. Most of that is from animation, but still, it’s a whole new world of teaching: words on the screen, spoken words, pictures . . . fingers crossed it’s not just a mess.
I’d forgotten how great it is just to learn new things–Pages is infinitely superior to Word, by the way–to make new things. One of the problems with writing novels is that they take so damn long. The thrill of finishing something in two weeks is addictive. I don’t know how much anybody else is going to learn from these lectures, but I’m learning a lot. I’d tell you what I’ve learned in detail, but I must go add slides to the next lecture.