This past week

I think I will add a couple more day to week one to give myself a little running start but otherwise this is the end of the first week of my master plan to take over the world (or at least inhabit a little more real estate in my own mind)! It has been a really exhausting week in all sorts of ways and I am thinking making time for exercise in addition to all these other things is also really important. I would like to get out and do some late fall hiking.

If I am counting right I have spent approximately 23 hours this week studying Irish, seven hours on content creation, and two hours learning the basics of Python. I don’t know how far I am getting with Irish but it is getting easier and easier. Words can actually be easier to remember than Spanish words, maybe because their uniqueness makes them easy to remember? I know there is so much I have not gotten to this week but I just can’t stop playing with Irish.

As far as content creation I watched some videos, took some notes, missed my first live class, and attended a second. I started reading some articles written by a classmate who writes about her passion for doing data science with Spotify. Aon LOL one of my classmates is from Ireland. One of the fun things about being in a class is getting to follow your classmates’ writing as we go through this process. The more I think about Medium, the more it feels like the right kind of internet home for me, in a lot of ways. I feel like the potentials for creating community are greater on Medium than on other platforms, or at least, the way of creating community through Medium seems a whole lot more intuitive than soing it with Facebook or Instagram!

I love that it is sbout connecting and providing value; I never paid much attention to Medium for a long time aside from noticing that, often, when I found an interesting, unique, high quality  article, it came from there. The first thoughts about writing on Medium happened when I was at the shelter and someone mentioned wanting to write  a Medium article on the shelter’s mishandling of its COVID cases. I kept it in the back of my mind since then and just happened to find right away the perfect resources to get me interested and engaged with this platform.

There are just all sorts of ways to use it to promote a business. One classmate has a freelancing business and wants to use Medium to bring awareness to his business and maybe land clients. So, not only does Medium pay writers, it lets you find all sorts of people who coupd be clients, too, and it’s easy to put up all sorts of alls to action, too. Transcription idsnot my main business anymore but I am thinking about how I might utilise Medium to bring some awareness to my business even if that isn’t my main goal and the intention of my writing, though I don’t know what it is, is not going to be attracting transcription clients. But just mentioning that briefly in my bio could be enough to bring in a client at some point. So it is an income stream in itself that helps you develop other income streams if you want to use it that way. Right now I am interested in exploring what I want to write about, learning more, avoiding all the mistakes that beginner’s make through my investment in a course, and learning as I go along. I want to get started and just write about something but probably I will go through the next module of the course first.

I keep forgetting that the first time I was paid by a stranger was writing online on a website called Theme Stream which I loved because people read and appreciated my articles and said they gave them perspectives they didn’t have before, but also, they paid you for views, and honestly before people started catching onto these sorts of things I learned how to send articicial traffic to the site. The couple hundred or so dollars I made came mostly from views I brought in in this way, but I also liked that I was reaching people on the site itself. Now Medium pays, not for views, but engagement by some algorithm, and the value you provide to others is really what gets monetised. Like Themestream there are other ways to monetize by bringing (relevant) traffic to your stories or getting people who do find your stories to take a call to action… but there are a lot more possibilities, it seems, and I am excited to explore them. So, that was my first income and I do not know if you can call it income from writing or income from manipulating the internet and what in those days were not entirely recognised as black hat tactics. The second time I made money it was, if I remember, a handful of dollars for a political article. I kept misremembering that as my first paid gig and totally forgot about ThemeStream, and despite my qualms with the internet these days, I am happy I am now learning about a platform that is even more exciting to me in all sorts of ways than even that!

My assessment of the first week: exhaustion and unexpected hangups in life got in the way of my productivity but I have made a lot of progress in Irish and I have whims of just taking a little pre-Christmas trip to Ireland but I don’t think I am *quite* ready. I always wondered why talking to Irish people can make me nervous and ai think I realised it is because I did not know Irish but I should! I learned go raibh maith agut and a few phrases the night before my first flight to Ireland but I remember feeling stressed like I wanted more time to learn and I wanted to please my girlfriend and put lots of things on our itinerary and then it all fell apart so maybe I associated my first experience of trying to learn Irish with something sad? When I go to Ireland I think I feel I don’t belong more than others who are not Irish don’t belong but that could just be because I’m supposed to know Irish? On a subtle level and in terms of the spirit of the land I feel more home in Ireland in a way than I do anywhere in the world but alas the land sings but she sings as Gaeilge…

That was kind of a breakup trip if there ever was one and I never actively thought about picking up the language again. Yet, despite the fact that most will understand my English, I kind of felt like I had nothing to say because I did not speak Irish. That fact weighed on me, or something, and I couldn’t fool myself. I can’t exactly talk about my interest in Ireland if I can’t fumble with a few Irish words at least. Well, now I can, so there’s that. As I heal old pains and heartbreaks things I always wanted to do but never did maybe precisely because of heartbreak come back to me… if I had just been myself I would have seen signs in that lovely Irish language and realised, I have to know how to speak that. I don’t know what will change next time I am in Ireland, but something will, I’m sure of it. How lonely it must have been for me to see signs like this in Irish while barely understanding them?

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