I asked my students last…

I asked my students last night if they'd googled me, and all of them had. That's the first time that's been the case, although to be fair, all = 4, so it's not as impressive as it sounds. Nonetheless, hi students! I hope you enjoyed class last night -- I certainly did. :-)

We read Kevin Brockmeier's "The Brief History of the Dead", and talked about setting a bit, and the way that the city is actually the main character in the story. In the process I decided that I think the whole virus thing is a bit forced -- necessary perhaps to get him the lovely ending to the piece, but nonetheless intrusive in what would otherwise be seamless mythmaking. It makes me even happier that I haven't read the novel version of the story, which I gather has much more of the virus plot etc. stuff. On the other hand, I loved Brockmeier's The Truth About Celia (thanks again to Kelly Link for the recommendation), so maybe I should have more faith in his novelistic abilities. Hmmm...

Also did some craft work based on LeGuin's Steering the Craft: the gorgeousness exercise and the short/long exercise. I think they found it worthwhile; so far, I think both of those exercises have generally gone over well and seemed productive to folks I've seen try it. Recommended.

One thing I'd really like to try to do this semester is document this class better. I've taught graduate fiction several times now, and I always end up totally reinventing the wheel, down to the level of making new photocopies every time. It's tedious, and wasteful of time. If I could just do it once with good documentation throughout, then in the future, I can just tweak it as desired, rather than regenerating new material (or rather, often the same material, in slightly different form) for every class. So, either I should keep a paper file for my photocopies or scan them in. That sort of thing. I'll try to work on it.

Today, I'm home with baby, and Kevin has his long day, teaching through to an evening class and home around 10. Luckily, I do get a bit of a break from alone-time with her; an old friend from college got in touch recently, and is coming by for lunch. Fun! Also, Kavi's in a much better mood today than she's been in a while, despite continued teething issues. There's a reason for that, but I think it deserves its own entry, so...

3 thoughts on “I asked my students last…”

  1. Mary Anne Mohanraj

    Heh. You know, I don’t think I’ve ever googled a student. It feels — umm…inappropriate is maybe a bit strong. I might do it in future, if I were having trouble getting in touch with a student by normal means and I was worried about their absences or some such. But in general, I think I’d rather not intrude on my students’ personal lives unless actively invited. Even if they’ve chosen to make some of their personal life public. 🙂

  2. Hi Mary Anne!

    I recommend the rest of the novel. Aside from a few references mostly in the next 2-3 chapters, the virus is not a part of the story. I thought it was a grerat read.

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