Illumination post

This is for my writing group, research as a second language, and SMT, and anyone else, of course. The topic is doing work in short sessions, every day.

Today in a departmental meeting on the lower division curriculum it was repeated that foreign language study is unlike the study of other subjects, like English or History, because you must do it in short sessions daily, as opposed to binge.

People really believe this — they really believe that you can fast and binge in most subjects.

My illumination is that the reason I know how to study everything is that I can study foreign languages. It is my model for everything. So of course it was I who came up, decades ago, with my brilliant page-a-day Master Theory of Writing.

The origin of The Theory, I realized as the meeting went on around me, is foreign language study, which is not different from other kinds of study, because no matter what you are studying, you must do it daily and have a rhythm.

So, the Great Myth about “needing big blocks of time to work” and so on, and starving your project and then bingeing with it, has to do with false ideas about the nature of disciplines.

What do you think of this hypothesis? Will you join me in killing the myth that only sports, music practice, and foreign languages need daily work?


3 thoughts on “Illumination post

  1. Finally, I can access your blog. Hallelujah!

    I really hoped that my graduating students were trained by the practice of learning a foreign language to write methodically and frequently. Yet I’m discovering that they believe that a senior essay can be written overnight. Of course, you can imagine what kind of writing this sort of bingeing produces.

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