unCommon News (September 2014)
unCommon News (September, 2014)
A crowd-powered newsletter for a writing-centered community
KairosCast & Writing Commons
We at Kairos are excited to announce the official launch of KairosCast, a new multimedia initiative that will focus on "widening the gate" for those interested in composing and publishing digital scholarship. The aim of Kairos has always been exploring the intersection of technology, rhetoric, and pedagogy, but KairosCast is designed to pull back the curtain on some of the hidden work that goes into making the kinds of webtexts that Kairos publishes. Additionally, we see KairosCast as an extension of the conversations that occur in and around the journal about teaching with technology, design strategies, the rhetoric of media and digital composition, and the like.
While Kairos publishes an issue 2-3 times a year, KairosCast will release content a few times each month. In addition to a regular podcast, KairosCast will publish other media in between episodes. DesignChats will feature conversations about specific articles with Kairos authors and/or editors; Tutorials will offer short demonstrations of using tools for digital scholarship; Chatter will provide short answers to practical questions, such as design or editing tips; and this is just the beginning.
KairosCast is also meant to be community driven. While this is a Kairos project, we want to solicit help from the whole community. You can develop a tutorial, suggest a question for our Chatter section, create a screencast of yourself discussing a compelling webtext, record an interesting conversation with a colleague about design, or throw out an idea that we haven't suggested yet. And if you have (or know of) a podcast that might fit with our mission, let us know. We're syndicating two podcasts already: Kyle Stedman's Plugs, Play, Pedagogy, and Casey Boyle and Nathaniel Rivers' PeoplePlaceThings.
We have numerous new webtexts to celebrate for Writing Commons this month, and have received a spike in submissions as well. Our webtexts this month celebrate the breadth and depth that Writing Commons aspires to, with everything from creative writing, to business writing, to technical writing represented.
First, we have a piece ("LinkedIn: Are You Making the Key Connections?") from Dr. Laura Palmer, Associate Professor and Chair of the English, Technical Communication, and Media Arts department at Southern Polytechnic State University. Palmer's webtext provides key strategies for using LinkedIn as more than just an online resume, of maximizing the number of views a profile receives, and improving one's online ethos. This webtext would be helpful for technical communication and business communication classes--and anyone on the job market, including graduate students and faculty.
Second, we have a piece ("Writing a Short Story") from Julie Nichols, associate professor of Creative Writing in the Department of English and Literature at Utah Valley University in Orem, Utah. Nichols examines the elements of good Short Story writing, the differences between a short story and a novel, and uses Kevin Moffet's short story, "Further Interpretations of Real Life Events," as an example for how to write compelling short fiction.
Quentin Vieregge, UW-Colleges
Assistant Professor of English
Editor-in-Chief, Writing Commons
The Professional and Technical Communication (P&TC) subsections of Writing Commons continue to grow as planned. The latest batch of webtexts to be published lay some strong groundwork for having readers understand the field of P&TC while also making readers aware of the finer rhetorical processes involved in the composition of effective workplace documents. One new contribution to the P&TC section (“Annotated List of Useful Professional and Technical Communication Resources”) reveals just a small part of what makes Writing Commons unique: the inclusion of resources to help those gain access to more field-based information. We hope teachers, students, and other users find these new additions quite useful.
"Professional and Technical Communication: An Overview"
"Professional and Technical Writing Processes: Planning"
"Professional and Technical Writing Processes: Composing"
"Practicing Intercultural Communication"
"You-Centered Business Style"
"Annotated List of Useful Professional and Technical Communication Resources"
We are pleased to announce the official launch of My Campus: http://mycampus.writingcommons.org/.
My Campus showcases the talents of undergraduate student writers in a dynamic forum. These talents manifest themselves in compositions ranging from academic posts to innovative multimedia projects. Regardless of the genres our writers deploy at My Campus, we hope to celebrate works that challenge us to think or see the world a bit differently. After all, we recognize that there is perhaps nothing so difficult and rewarding as trying to say something well to others.
Although the summer is just coming to a close, we have been busy at My Campus, blogging, completing the site, and adding members to the team. Kate Pantelides (Easterm Michigan University) and Kristen Gay (Clemson University) are Co-Editors of the site, and we’re looking for new My Campus interns and editors. If you know of a talented undergraduate student writer who may be interested, or you are one yourself, then please visit contribute for more information on how to apply.
First and foremost, students who intern at My Campus have a forum for sharing their ideas about writing, composition, communication, and rhetorics with like-minded peers. Unlike an undergraduate research journal, My Campus provides a more informal space for the exchange of ideas and energy. We encourage students to contribute writing while it’s still in progress—ideas that would benefit from peer feedback, ideas that might not otherwise be heard by professors, and ideas that might help readers to rethink their own composing processes. Students also gain valuable experience with composing in digital environments, editing their writing, developing a writing persona/voice, and responding to feedback from readers.
We encourage you to read widely on My Campus to get a sense of what students choose to write about in their own time. For instance, check out Laura Klocinski’s trbiute to Maya Angelou or Laz Shwan’s musings about Sweden political context. We are eager to read what your students have to say, so please encourage them to participate. As the site develops, please send us your questions and recommendations!
Editor-in-Chief, My Campus
Assistant Professor of English, Eastern Michigan University
Our traffic during August was up 47% from August, 2013. 77,014 users perused 139,157 webtexts.
As we mentioned last month, we were cheered by the steady rise in summer traffic. Now that school is back in session, we welcome the undergraduate class of 2018 to Writing Commons.
If you have pedagogical materials suitable for publication at Writing Commons, we hope you'll consider submitting your work to our peer review process. Our students really appreciate your contributions and your work will find a broad, global audience.
Visit us at our Facebook page. View newsfeeds regarding Writing Commons and updates about open education.
Don't forget to connect with Writing Commons on Twitter using @writingcommons and #writingcommons. Writing Commons' tweets consist of answers to students' most common writing questions, such as "What's a paragraph supposed to have?" and "What's Rogerian argument?" Each tweet is hyperlinked to our Writing Commons blog where Writing Commons staff members provide succinct, accessible answers, and helpful examples.
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