jessicasteiner: (I Write Therefore I Am)
It's been a crazy couple of weeks, between work and novelling, but I have finally reached a point where I feel I can write about it, so...yay!

I am taking a couple of courses, which is sucking up some of my time. I'm also continuing my cut of OtherWhere, which is going fabulously. I'm 115 pages in, out of about 350 pages of manuscript and I'm really feeling as though it was a better book to start with than Mortis Unbound, which means that it's a lot easier to cut and fix.

I've also put together a new website, which is at http://www.jessicasteinerbooks.com (Unfortunately, someone else named Jessica Steiner has the url I wanted o999)

It's pretty bare bones right now, but if you head over there you can see that I've migrated my mailing list over to a new provider. I'm going to be giving away stories and doing fun little things on the list, too, so I'm excited about that. I'm also excited by the fact that soon there will be the ability - through my website - for people to give me money without giving any money to Amazon or Smashwords. That'll be really cool! Over the next few weeks I'll be cleaning up this blog and migrating some content (like the sticky post) over to the website and fixing things up.

Next weekend I'll be going to VCON. If the universe aligns, Dan Wells and Mur Lafferty will know my name by the following weekend. My goal is to contain my fangirl and instead be totally awesome and professional. We'll see.

Between now and then, I have to finish critiquing three stories for the workshop I'm doing, and finish organizing my website. I also hope my new business cards arrive. They're supposed to show up by Wednesday.

If you head over to my website, please let me know what you think? I'd really like to hear feedback and/or suggestions
jessicasteiner: (Fangirl Moment)
I had a crazy day, today, so I suspect this post is going to be pretty short. Oh well.

A couple of months ago, I made a post about Coursera, a website where one can take free university courses on a variety of subjects. I was pretty excited about the idea, and I'd signed up for a half a dozen different courses. The courses are taught primarily through the watching of videos, the doing of small assignments and the taking of quizzes.

Now I've completed four courses, and I thought it was time to talk about it again.

Overall, I'm really pleased about this discovery, and I think I'll continue to take Coursera courses for as long as it holds my attention.

I've taken a course on pharmaceuticals, a course on genetics, one of international criminal law, and one on nutrition. In all four courses, I've learned some pretty amazing things.

I wound up quitting the Pharma course halfway through, because I found that I'd learned the few things I wanted to learn, and the requirements for course completion were far too rigorous for it to be worth it to me to actually get the certificate of completion. But the other three courses I stuck through and received certificates for.

There's really no downside to Coursera. If you're not enjoying the course, you can always quit. There's no cost and really no spam. The courses range from sciences to computers to social subjects, and more.

The main thing to be cognizant of is checking the syllabus to see what the completion requirements are and taking a realistic look at your life. There was a period when I felt pretty overwhelmed, which was part of why I quit the one course. I don't think I could ever manage more than 2-3 courses at a time. The nutrition course was a huge time suck, because there were so many videos, but I stuck it through because I was learning so much that was really valuable to me. Right now I'm in the midst of a science fiction and fantasy literature course, which is also a big time investment, since I'm having to try to find time to read all these great stories. But I'm enjoying it and trying not to stress about being constantly behind.

Be aware of your limits and don't attach too much importance to it, and I guarantee you'll learn a lot.

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Jessica Steiner

February 2016

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