I have an habit of going through news feeds a couple of times a day. I’ll usually go through 30-40 items, reading short ones, skipping over uninteresting ones (very easy with NetNewsWire, you just hit space to go from one to the next) and opening longer ones in a Safari tab in the background (just hit B). I then switch to the browser and look in more detail at what’s in there, for the really long and/or interesting ones I leave the tab open and go to the next. Once I’ve gone through that bunch I go back to NNW and do another batch.
Sounds like a long anal process, which it kind of is, but it’s actually usually pretty quick considering all the photologs, linklogs and “pure news” feeds I follow. Photos don’t take long and there really isn’t all that much deserving of prolonged attention in the news, I’m just skimming. A lot of bloggers also write short posts that are quick reads.
Aaaaanyway. When I’ve got a bit more time I go back to the longer ones and it’s often from those that posts come or where I learn the stuff I use for work. Often times I’ll want to re-read them, give them more thought and come back later in the hopes of writing a thoughtfull post. That doesn’t really happen, I do go back, do re-read and things do “simmer” in the ole’ noggin but I pretty much never sit down and really think about a post.
Case in point, this was supposed to be an intro to a post that would feature short blurbs about 5-6 such articles that I really wish I was thinking through but I haven’t been doing that and they’re collecting mold in the far reaches of my tab bar. The intro turned into… I don’t know what but end with a question that might not get any answer; for those of you who write long posts (or anything long in other media) how do you go about that? Do you think about it in front of the screen? Walking? Is there some trick I don’t know about? Do I just follow to many things, leaving no time to think through anything? (I actually have a post about that which has been in a tab for 3 weeks…)