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In a bid to motivate myself to write here a bit more frequently, and hopefully in a way that is going to avoid getting stuck for ideas (or even worse, proper writer’s block), I present to you a new occasional series: Under 500 Words On…

Now the idea here isn’t that I’ll fully explain, investigate or otherwise write about a topic completely, but rather that in a particular blog post I will write no more than 500 words about it. The reasons for this are threefold:

  1. There are lots of things I’d like to write about. How these pop up in my head is often quite haphazard and definitely doesn’t form part of an underlying agenda or plan (I would not be a very good campaign blogger). As such, I have found myself repeatedly coming up with a topic, only to leave it a while before I get the chance to sit down and write. By which time I’ve forgotten what it was I wanted to say.
  2. I want to get down on paper (on the screen?) my immediate thoughts about something, before I get a chance to properly research and check things. That’s not to say these won’t be thought out and checked against trusted sources, just that you won’t see lengthy bibliography lists here. I’m interested to see what types of things this sort of immediacy will bring up. I expect (hope?) that they will be things we do not always see eye to eye with and will lead to healthy discussion.
  3. I think 500 words is a good length of writing: enough to state an opinion and discuss some of the pertinent issues, short enough to foster clarity of writing. I want to be clear and concise with my writing, and I hope that an experiment like this will help me work on that in particularly.

Topics that I end up writing about in under 500 words will probably not be sequenced logically: I will write about things as they occur to me. I have things I’m generally interested in, but then there are others that are prompted by things outside of my control (outside of my head, to be exact): they may be influenced by conferences, seminars, the news, special occasions, random occurrences, and so on. I’m also very open to suggestions here. If you have a topic you’d like to see written about in under 500 words, please share it here. You can leave a comment below. I will do my utmost to include it in this occasional series.

However, that being said, I do have something in mind for my second post Under 500 Words On something. This will focus on something I’ve been casually researching recently: reading online and on the screen. There are a lot of affordances that technology allows us, but I think there is a lot to discuss with screen-based reading.

Hope you enjoyed reading this post in Under 500 Words On Under 500 Words.