We Write to Work Out What We Think


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#ECE11 Pecha Kucha presentation: builds on ideas that researchers – postgraduates and advisors alike – can practice as writing researchers in order to gain comfort and flourish in as creative knowledge producers and collaborative meaning makers.

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  • INTRODUCTION As PGRs, grad stu, post docs and mentors, advisors, supervisors doing research, we are simultaneously, and of necessity, readers, writers, responders and collaborators in the work of thinking. And we engage ALL of these active roles if we are to become creative meaning makers. We think and create in response to stimulus, to data, to contexts, to interstices, to responses.
  • WRITING AS RESEARCHER . . . is creativity - that “process of having original ideas that have value” (Ken Robinson) that is, an imaginative activity that seeks out original and assesses value. Consider then research as creative and research writing as creative writing, which does require dreaming, discovering, delivering moments, bits, sounds of ideas well before one “feels ready” to start writing All Our Futures: Creativity, Culture and Education National Advisory Committee on Creative and Cultural Education 1999
  • WRITING AS RESEARCHER is creation Sometimes letters and words are not pictures of things – they are art forms, creative enterprises with verbs, nouns, modifiers shifting shades and modes and implication as we work, work out, find outlets. Writing as a researcher is generative and unapologetic – think festival, music and mud and sheer joy in each. Image: Sorry for my english
  • WRITING AS RESEARCHER . . . is learning, is remembering, retrieving, recreating, reappraising, reframing, refreshing and rejection. Writing as a researcher is, therefore, adult learning. * decision-making moves between universal/specific * attends to internal features of situation for reasoning in context * operates with a conscious of own & others’ ways of learning; of multiple learning modes needed situationally; and of meta-cognition as a key component * assesses match between earlier rules/practices/practical theories and emerging understandings in “interpersonal, work and political lives”
  • WRITING AS RESEARCHER . . . is resilience, a characteristic of all creatives - athletes and cooks and writers and academics alike. Resilience is action to embrace contraries – ADD ELBOW HERE Resilience is discerning of Work-Life Integration and unmasking the lie of Work-Life Balance. Resilience is experiencing writing in multiple ways and at various points a day or across a research project. A resilient researcher writes steady. Resilient writing comes a word, a phrase, a sentence, a possibility at a time.
  • WRITING AS RESEARCHER . . . Is “writing with power” which means getting over yourself and getting power over the writing process is taking charge to become comfortable and fluent as a writer by working through feeling stuck, helpless or intimidated , which means learning more ways to write and learning how you actively work to not write is knowing this struggle is an ORDINARY part of higher levels learning Power acronym from Texas A&M grad school: P romoting O utstanding W riting For E xcellence in R esearch Peter Elbow quote/paraphrase from http://myweb.wvnet.edu/~jelkins/writeshop/writeshop/elbow.html
  • WRITING AS RESEARCHER . . . is preparation – learning the laws of genre, grammar to generate ideas AND create routes to communicating with others. Finding safety in the risk of writing early, often and in the company of others is a contrary to embrace – being stewards to knowledge and disciplines while also acting as allies to new ideas, new actors, newly understood contexts and situations. * I hate PCs – edit slide image on a Mac; whittle words
  • WRITING AS RESEARCHER . . . is to plan for and do the work of learning yourself into inspiration: Think Do Reflect Test Create Writing, as all honest academics should acknowledge, is first of all reporting for work, recording regularly What You Know, What You Do Not Know and Need to Learn, and How you will Learn, Answers and Questions you are shaping and how these will lead to change. * Add C – for change to chart on slide
  • RESPONDING AS RESEARCHER . . . Becomes a memorable journey when travelers consult both carefully sign posted routes and seek out unmarked way markers for well used, humanely paced, wisely explored and traveler endorsed byways that you will discover as you consult with others. Whether responder or one responded to: point to ideas, clarify where you read with fluency, note difficulties, ask questions – converse and comment rather than edit and redline.
  • RESPONDING AS RESEARCHER. . . Is a rugby scrum with multiple mentors responding rather than an academic silo’s single sponsor – here the sheer power of players binds together for a single purpose, and the resultant exhilaration comes from full engagement with energy of players from a range of positions, each needing a full range of skills, each generating plays together.
  • RESPONDING AS RESEARCHER . . . … is self-publishing your ideas for the preliminary audiences of multiple mentors & peers in a Scrum w/ you, and understanding that not each or every early draft should be something perfectly publishable – shitty first drafts are the start of self-publishing
  • RESPONDING AS RESEARCHER Takes place in the realm of plain spokenness – drafting is a starting out place for ideas, a place between what we know, are learning, seek to understand, will come to create – and that’s the realm of plain speaking. Those not in your field are sometimes the best guides for responding to your emerging ideas in ways that help you to bridge the plain to the disciplinary in illuminating ways.
  • A reply not an evaluation RESPONDING AS RESEARCHER is, as I keep saying, is an act of replying not evaluating. It requires responding to questions posed to us by writers, as well as questions we might post to elicit replies from writers.
  • RESPONDING AS RESEARCHER is therefore knowing when, why and from whom to ask for evaluation, and how to ask for it in a Revision Memo: ** explain
  • Responding and Writing as a Supervisor is thinking first about fostering learning. Brains are rather like scrums – pillars entwined making for an extraordinary force. How can move from commentator speaking to the blank margins of learner generated text to provoker of effective next stage learning by first seeking – expecting – questions and then responding? How can you move from redline rule conveyer to engaged reader pointing to reflective and creative thinking possibilities as you ask writers to test ideas as then move into the next stages of generative thinking and writing ? and generative writing practices
  • Responding and Writing as a Supervisor … is understanding that if each piece of writing has never existed in the world before this moment and needs outlets for energizing and empowering, then Responding and Writing as a Supervisor requires using story telling techniques to help bring out ideas, insights, intellectual contributions | Summarize – Narratives, Dialogues, Comparisons Tell – Stories, Scenes, Portraits Show – Ideas, Options, Missed Moments Point – 1 st Thoughts, Asking
  • Responding and Writing as a Supervisor is making use of what we know about learning and the art of questioning to alsocome to know who our students are, AND who they envision themselves becoming as researchers. We need to learn about whose shoulders they choose to stand on in making their own research, to help them explore new scholarly, textual, personal, community and emotional selves so that they cast and stand on their own shadows.
  • ** as with earlier texty slide, play with this on Mac Responding and Writing as a Supervisor is remaking contrary roles of expert gatekeeper and training antagonist into collaborative roles of mentoring stewards and honest allies - discourse analysis before prose correction - readerly concerns before editor’s preferences - tracking ideas and arguments through attention to signposts and transitions - considering impact of our words on the full person
  • Responding and Writing as a Supervisor – is perspective taking not how we got here, but how we use where we have been, how we have dissented, grown, created since then in ways that we can be of useto writers aiming to get to where they want to go is using writing always as a networking tool, establishing links between ourselves and our students, putting ourselves in the world and into words as people. is reflecting on how their questions – implicit and explicit, asked and about to be discovered – change how we see, engage, share, create, make public our work.
  • Conclusion – Hannah Evans Stafford (on right) - her writing rules included - Write what you really think. Hannah Stafford Alexander (on left) – asked me in the midst of writing first masters thesis: What if you accept that you can do it?
  • We Write to Work Out What We Think

    1. 1. We write... to work to work out to out ideas
    2. 2. <ul><li>Michael Small @ shuttermike.com </li></ul>
    3. 4. <ul><li>RESEARCH = LEARNING = WORK </li></ul><ul><li>think dialectically </li></ul><ul><li>employ practical logic </li></ul><ul><li>know how (& why) you (don’t) know engage in critical reflection </li></ul>
    4. 6. http://www.linkedmediagroup.com/ P romoting O utstanding W riting for E xcellence in R esearch
    5. 7. <ul><li>Delving into the law book opened up a new world. Referees’ unfathomable calls seemed suddenly clear. </li></ul><ul><li>Confidence soared. </li></ul><ul><li>Strength & technique were supplemented with a magical sense of knowledge . </li></ul><ul><li>Our enjoyment of the game expanded exponentially as the mysterious shield of ignorance surrounding referees decisions melted away . </li></ul><ul><li>At the end of the day don’t you go over what has happened, live it again, hear everything Charlie said in that fight he had with the boss? </li></ul><ul><li>Well, that’s history . </li></ul><ul><li>Write it down just as you would say it. </li></ul><ul><li>Worker Writers </li></ul><ul><li>Rugby for Dummies </li></ul>
    6. 8. www.hollypester.com www.123rf.com/ K W H L A Q C
    7. 9. Work Out Ideas Work Work Ideas Out Ideas
    8. 10. Wales vs Italy from www.giorgiameschini.com
    9. 11. 4Rs: Read Respond Real Reader Communication by www.masters.ab.ca/ Made You Look by apokolokyntosis
    10. 13. <ul><ul><li>Jeff Paschke-Johannes on Peter Elbow and Patricia Belanoff’s A Community of Writers: A Workshop Course in Writing . NY: McGraw-Hill, 1989, 1995 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ What we need most as writers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>is…an accurate account of </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>what goes on inside readers’ heads </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>as they read our words.” </li></ul></ul>
    11. 14. “ if p then q” from www. otherroom.org
    12. 15. Gather Data Reflect Create Test
    13. 17. Glenn Ligon sculpture, photo at Creative Commons by mightymightymatze
    14. 18. <ul><li>While individual positions have specific duties, all players participate in offensive and defensive aspects ; therefore, must have universal skills enabling play accordingly. </li></ul><ul><li>Some people think writers drop from heaven . </li></ul><ul><li>But it isn’t true. There are definite things that anyone can learn about how to put your material together once you get it out in your notebook. There is nothing mysterious about it. </li></ul><ul><li>It is simply something you learn. Anyone can learn it . </li></ul><ul><li>Worker Writers </li></ul><ul><li>Rugby for Dummies </li></ul>