Category Archives: Class

Class, Fri, 2/21

Working with A Better Pencil

Getting Started

  • Please locate two passages in Baron’s text—one that you find especially insightful or eloquent, and another where he seedb_wild_hairms to you to be straining to make a point or articulate an idea. Be ready to take us to these passages at opportune moments in our conversation.
  • Reread the comments on your x1 post. Identify a moment in one that raises an issue that you’d like us to discuss.


x2: Responding to Standage



Using audio

Going meta


Blog Posts

  • Identify a brief prose passage from one of the x1 posts that you admire.
  • Identify a use of another medium in one of the posts that you feel adds strongly  to its argument. See if you can name this use.

Digital Essay

Tsakiri-Scanatovits, Marie-Margaux . 2010. My Mother’s Coat.

Mother's Coat

To do

  1. Tues, 2/25, 4:00 pm: Read Standage. Post x2 to this site.
  2. Thurs, 2/27, 4:00 pm: Read x2s. Post comments.
  3. Thurs, 2/27, 4:00 pm: Tweet to #685dw.
  4. Tues,, 3/04, 4:00 pm: Read Davidson. Post x3 to this site.

Aethetics in Digital Writing

Once we were asked to bring ink brush and papers the classroom practicing calligraphy, not only as a form of artisitc recreation but to show students having well-trained, educated hands.

Now we are witnessing the emphasis on good handwriting dwindling on one side of the seesaw and the online technical writing growing on the other side. Never before have writers had at their finger tips the tools to almost seamlessly integrate text and graphics, savvy animation, audio, video and other elements and to dynamically publish and widely distribute the products to virtual spaces. Internet create a new kind of writing space and this space changes not only writing process but also communication dynamics between writers and readers. Authors in digital age are also attempting to reach new stylistics, binding parallex formats, font styles with customized images such as this love letter at the right corner.ee_valentinefonts

More than an aesthetic “use” of the written language, the aesthetics in digital writing is probably more of a material expression: expression of the text format and of the interactive medium between authors and audience.

Class, Fri, 2/14


Rewarding/Frustrating/Funny: Describe a recent experience you’ve had with writing online that fits one of those categories. Use this story to introduce yourself to the class.


Writing in a digital age

MachineUsingUsMichael Wesch, The Machine Is Us/ing Us

Near the end of his video essay, Wesch lists a number of terms and concepts he feels we’ll need to rethink in a digital age, including:

  • copyright
  • authorship
  • identity
  • ethics
  • aesthetics
  • rhetoric
  • privacy

Wesch composed and posted his essay in 2007. Pick one of the terms on his list and, in a fastwrite, see if you can point to some ways in which its meaning has shifted since then.

Aims and structure of this course

  • Rethink writing in a digital environment
  • Readings: Past, present, academic, teaching
  • Writings: Class blog and digital essay
  • Reading the schedule

Practical matters

  • Access to low-end digital photography, video, and audio
  • Deadlines, punctuality
  • Food
  • Laptops

x1: Responding to Baron

 Comments and tweets

Digital essaySelf Kafka's Wound

 Will Self, Kafka’s Wound (2012)


To do

  1. Tues, 2/18, 4:00 am: Read Baron. Post x1 to this site.
  2. Thurs, 2/20, 4:00 pm: Read x1s. Post comments to at least three.
  3. Thurs, 2/20, 4:00 pm: Tweet at least once to #685dw.
  4. Tues, 2/25,4:00 pm: Read Standage. Post x2 to this site.


This website supports the work ofjh 09-2013

English 685
Writing in a Digital Age
University of Delaware
Spring 2014

To find out more about the course, please click on the tabs above.

To find out more about me, please visit

I look forward to working with you!