Evidence #043/New tech and stories

I’ve always been really comfortable talking in front of groups of people. That’s how I always deliver my stories, face-to-face in front of people. But now after taking this class, I’m excited by all the different ways you can tell stories online and through social media tools. Not only does it increase access to these stories (a librarian’s dream) you can also emphasize different points and meanings from a story through how you chose to tell it. An audio story on podmatic packs a very different punch then the same story told through a slideshow of photos/index cards on wevideo. There’s more options for the best medium and method in sharing whatever story you like.

I wish this class had been longer, so I could have explored how libraries could have taken advantage of these types of tools. But now I feel like I have a good foundation of skills and plenty of ideas if I ever want to try something new at work. New technology makes me hopeful that stories will just have a greater significance in our society then they ever have before.

 

That being said, here is my final project, an updated version of the Fall of the House of Usher by Edgar Allen Poe.

1. So I actually trimmed this from 12 mins down to 8.30 and couldn’t figure out what else to get rid of. I suck at telling small stories. Sorry

2. If I had a youtube nail tutorial channel in real life, I would totally call it Nailing It. Because puns.

3. I had the worst time with wevideo. It kept freezing on me, and for some reason, the first video clip I uploaded refused to match my voice to my mouth, no matter what I did to fix it. It also made one of my clips freeze completely, so I had to get rid of it. That may be why there’s a weird jump in time.

Otherwise…Evidence #043

 

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Procrastination Fixation

So let me tell you an honest story: I’m an obnoxious jerk.

Pictured: An obnoxious jerk

Pictured: An Obnoxious Jerk

But not in the way you’re thinking! I’m not a bully, I’m kind to puppies, and I never take the last cookie.

Well, almost never

Well, almost never

So no, I’m not an obnoxious jerk for any of the traditional reasons. I’m an obnoxious jerk because I don’t need to work very hard to get good grades and I loveeeeeeeee telling people about it.

You're lucky I couldn't figure out how to upload videos, otherwise this would have been a evil laugh over a Spice Girls track.

You’re lucky I couldn’t figure out how to upload videos, otherwise this would have been a evil laugh over a Spice Girls track.

And sure, that sounds like the best possible reason to be an obnoxious jerk, ever. I didn’t have to study in high school. I struggled with two classes in undergrad. I started papers maybe two days before their due dates if I was feeling particularly productive, and I’d get A’s. Easy Peasy.

So what’s really the problem with this that makes me an obnoxious jerk?

This makes me the worst procrastinator in the entire universe.

I procrastinated on taking a new picture for this one, so here's one that's already done.

I procrastinated on taking a new picture for this one, so here’s one that’s already done.

You may think you’re no Eager Beaver yourself when it comes to schoolwork. But trust me. Your ‘last minute’ frantic panic is like my three day weekend before I even have to start thinking about this assignment.

Case in point: I looked at this module for the first time yesterday at 10pm. Briefly considered thinking about this blog assignment until I figured eh, I have plenty of time and had a Spice Girls Dance Party by myself in my apartment instead. I painted my fingernails and my toenails.

And they came out fabulous!

And they came out fabulous!

I finally started writing a rough draft of this blog post at 3pm, taking lots of breaks in between. I took 40 minutes trying to pick out earrings to wear in these photos. Another 20 to find the perfect angle for my laptop camera. Another break to go dance to Backstreet Boys this time. I reorganized my nail polish collection. I thought about washing my floor, and decided to take a nap instead.

And now it’s getting dark out. My deadline is finally starting to weigh on me.

Oops….

Oops….

This could have been done hours ago. But nope. I had to keep putting it off, and putting it off, and putting it off some more until it actually was crunch time, and I had to throw myself into getting this done.

I love and hate procrastinating like this.On one hand, working under pressure motivates me to actually work. It forces me to think and plan about actual important things, as opposed to wondering if I should keep my 90s party going with N*Sync next (Answer: Always yes.) I always end up finishing on time, and my work is always good.

But there’s never enough time to ensure if my work is truly great. I’m always rushing to finish, so who knows if I’m fully exploring my story. If I’m presenting the best version of my story, not just my good-enough first draft. Or even if this actually is the story I want to tell.

Sure this procrastination-always-rushing/delaying-my-story idea has been swirling around in my mind for a few hours, but if I had given it some more time, would I have come up with something different? Would it have been better?

Would it have been something closer to my heart, as opposed to something on my mind?

I don’t know why I lack so much focus when I have everything else. I’ve read articles that when people are reluctant to begin working, they’re afraid they don’t actually have anything of value to say. So they need the pressure of time to force their brain to just churn out whatever’s needed to get the project done, without the opportunity to even consider what’s coming out.

I don’t know if that’s me or not. It’s much more comfortable to brush this off as me being an obnoxious jerk. That’s the first thing that pops into my head, and it feels safer to admit.

Especially when my other option is wondering if I actually do have a story worth telling.

Authentic Stories

Steve Jobs told us three stories in 15 mintues. Normal stories that could have happened to anyone (being adopted, dropping out of college, becoming sick, getting fired, etc). Three, quick stories that seemed simple, yet  delivered an emotional punch that was definitely not simple.

I’ve been thinking a lot about what made Steve Jobs simple little speech so different and so much more effective then many of the other speeches I’ve ever listened to. A thousand little theories have run through my head, but what keeps circling around in my head, is how authentic it all seems. He’s relating real life experiences. There’s no promoting, or showboating or ‘do as I say, not as I do’ themes. He has first hand accounts backing up everything he’s saying.

So there’s really no need for elaborate, overdramatic language or presentation. He doesn’t even need formal evidence. He can speak simply and authentically, because no one can tell him he’s wrong. There’s no need to defend himself. He states his stories, and then he’s done.

There’s something incredibly effective about speaking from authenticity like that. It’s a very powerful position, when you can state, instead of explain. It’s much harder to challenge.

It makes the stories and experiences that much more applicable to your own life.

 

WOW! I used to play WoW!

So for roughly two years-ish (maybe three, I’m starting to lose track of time in my old age) I was obsessed with World of Warcraft. I absolutely loved that game. When I was sitting in class, waiting to go home to play it, my thinking would morph into a sort of chat mood in my head, and I constantly held my hand cupped like I was holding a mouse. I got up to a level 58 Night Elf Druid and a level 20 human warlock before my interest finally started to wan, and I couldn’t really afford the monthly fee anymore. 

It’s funny that I say ‘obsessed’ because I wasn’t really obsessed with the game in a way other players would appreciate. I didn’t understand the finer aspects of my character’s race/abilities, I picked my armor because it was pretty, and I tended to get everyone killed in raids because I accidentally attracted the bad guys before we were ready. (Sort of like Leeroy Jenkins…but by accident, I swear!) 

But I loveeeeeeeeeeed questing, and leveling up to become more powerful. The graphics were beautiful, so I loved running around, finding new places and filling in the blank spots on my map. And I’ll be girly here; I loved designing my avatar and wearing kick ass armor that I’d never be able to wear in real life.

I’ve always been a little partial to magic and fantasy stories. So playing WoW was my way of being able to live out these fantasies of being magical and powerful, like getting to ride through these ancient forests on a tiger when I wasn’t a being a Tree to heal people, or being my awesome Druid self and blasting pixels to death. I was crazy obsessed with Greek mythology for awhile, so I named my avatars after Amazon warriors and tried to act like one when I was playing. It was like living in my own mystical adventure. 

So if I ever wanted to study some aspect of the games, I think it’s a huge advantage that I’ve lived it, understand where some of the players are coming from, and I was involved in it for a chunk of time. I think it would give me a lot of credibility. I’d have an easier time navigating the world, so I could focus more on collecting data instead of learning the game. But since I wasn’t a hardcore gamer, I’d still have things to learn, and I wouldn’t be set in my ways.

On that note, I’m fascinated by gender in roleplaying games like this. I remember WoW being very male dominated, and I doubt that’s changed. There were two kinds of guy players: flirty and dismissive (ex: “Don’t worry your pretty little head about it, you don’t need to know how to raid”) or rude and dismissive (“Of course she can’t raid right, she has a vagina”). The only time they weren’t like this, was when they weren’t sure if you were actually a girl or not. So when I played, I tended to stick with other female players, and I was a part of an all-female raid group.

I’m not exactly sure what I would be most interested in studying, but those experiences have been kind of tumbling around in my head for today. I’ve actually been feeling the urge to play it again, but it’s still way too expensive for me right now. For now, my need for nail polish and food is winning out over a WoW subscription. But after class tomorrow, who knows? Maybe I’ll be inspired to pick it back up over the summer.