Friday Musings

I’m back at school today. As a new faculty member, I have orientations every Friday. So far they’ve been very helpful. Today’s session was over wikis and blogs and how we can incorporate them into Blackboard. We also received a tutorial over smart boards, which was neat and informative. Unlike some of my colleagues, I’m more than willing to embrace technology in the classroom. I think where educators make the mistake is when they don’t have a Plan B. Technology, just like many other things, is not full proof. If you go into a classroom planning to use a computer, projector, or smart board, you should also go into that same classroom prepared that those machines may not work. Part of teaching is being prepared. If you’re prepared, you’ll be fine no matter what.

This theme of this weekend is “eat, drink, and be merry.” R and I and friends are attending the Greek Festival and Oktoberfest. Good times!

I just read the winning story for the Emerging Writers Network fiction contest. Here is the link to the story, The Secret Life of Engineers, by David Borofka. I was struck by the title and the story is very good. Here is what the judge, Alyson Hagy, said about it:

The height of summer in the Rocky Mountains is the worst time of the year to judge a literary contest. Because it’s perfect outside. The sky, the alpine meadows, the back country streams are all signing their Siren songs. So it takes a very good set of short stories to keep me indoors…and interested.
“The Secret Life of Engineers” is a story that knows its voice and heart. It never resorts to literary pyrotechnics. It doesn’t try to do too much, and it left me with a rich, complicated sense of its characters despite the fact that it’s not very long. It’s a story that believes in itself, and thus, it made a believer out of me. The author of this story has a wonderful ear (there’s not a syllable out of place, in my opinion). He or she also has a keen sense of comic timing. In fact, most of the best stories I read for the contest were funny. Thank goodness for that. I loved the brio and balls of many, many of these entries. These writers are not shy, and that’s a good thing. They have something to say and good tales to tell…and they kept me glued to my chair despite the lure of the great Wyoming outdoors.

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