Turns out that Say Everything is being used as a text in a half-dozen classes at that school. As part of the college’s participation in the National Council of Teachers of English’s National Day on Writing, and also part of a cool writer’s series called Frequency North, St. Rose asked me to come talk about blogging and writing. Which I always love to do.
The poster for the talk, reproduced above, caused me to do a doubletake, which I’m sure was the point. I’m slow, sometimes, so it took me a minute before I registered the “hanging your laundry in public” concept. Nice work, and probably the one and only time my name will share a billboard with panties.
Anyway, I had a great day at St. Rose talking with students and faculty and chatting on the local public radio affiliate.
The college has posted a complete video of the talk. (Or here’s just a three-minute taste of the audio, with some optimistic observations on the concept of information overload.) Also, I worked from pretty extensive notes, and I’ve cleaned them up, filled them out a bit and posted them on a separate page. Here it is — Large Blocks of Uninterrupted Text: A Talk on Blogging and ‘Say Everything.’
This is a pretty extensive update on the blogging talk that I was giving back when Say Everything first came out. I start with the Onion, proceed to the death of culture, and discuss the rise of blogging just a bit. Then I use the remarkable saga of Joey DeVilla the Accordion Guy and his New Girl — a story that didn’t make it into Say Everything — as a way to discuss a whole series of critiques of blogging and online discourse along some familiar vectors: truth and trust; anonymity and civility; serendipity; narcissism; shallowness and substance; attention and overload.