Wednesday, May 25, 2005

plan your work and work your plan

I was told that "plan your work and work your plan" is one of the seven steps to being a highly successful person. Can't hurt.
Followed through on today's plan to look up authors' guidelines for Computers and Writing Series as well as Utah State. Also organized most of the files for McLuhan for Compositionists project, wrote a table of contents, and worked on first chapter, incorporating the new Jeff Rice article that asks "why was McLuhan ignored in 1963 when composition emerged as Composition--a professional field." I found myself getting bogged down a bit, which I frequently do: how much detail is the right amount of detail? I initially thought I would knock out some of the early occurances of McLuhan, in Deemer's "composition is a happening" and in Macrorie's work, but I suppose I will save that for later.

Also started exploring the Bacon/Vico roots of McLuhan's thinking: definitely a topic in which I will have to be careful not to totally immerse myself in those two as I try to make a point about McLuhan's roots and his distrust of the dialectical, the schoolmen, the specialists. I have been wondering if I need to go back to Cicero--I suppose McLuhan is largely invoking that notion of the need for breadth of knowledge, for wisdom and eloquence, not just one or the other.

Tomorrow's plan: visiting Mark's class in the morning, or for part of the morning, any way. Need to really put the CW presentation together in a way so that I can leave it until I get to SF. Small crowd likely, so don't knock myself out. Gotta figure out whether to pursue a publication or just let it go as is, fold McCloud into McLuhan for Compositonists. Putting it together means finishing off diagrams, scanning in the visual language matrix, CRAP, figuring out how, exactly, to deal with my students' work. Perhaps just go with it as is, not worry, and similarly not worry too much about the publication at this point.

Things to read:
Wysocki's essay on form and content again.
Kinneavy's Theory of Discourse (no small task).
Bacon and Vico, primary and secondary sources.

I should try to do a better job of staying focused on the readings, too; skimmed a few things on Bacon and Vico today, but not sure I took anything useful from them.

10 minutes is too easy--but maybe 15 is too long and keeps me from working my plan. Kinneavy, here I come.


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