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Introducing Shorts

This is to introduce a new format of posts I’m experimenting with. I have many unfinished drafts of posts lying around. When I asked myself why, I came to the conclusion that it’s natural in the writing process to have parallel threads of unfinished ideas1 However, there’s a certain mixture of joy (and anxiety) associated with periodically releasing your work to a broader audience.

Writing time lies on a spectrum, from long form posts which can take a month or more, to tweets which exist on the time scale of seconds to minutes. I aim to structure these posts by pursuing an in between strategy of releasing shorts that capture the gist of an idea without delving into a lengthier exposition. To stay true to this goal, I’m following a self-imposed restriction to cap the post length to 700 words2. The hope is that this length should encourage me to share what I’m reading, building, and thinking about, without aiming for the completeness of a longer post3.

I’ll end with a quote:

“There is no real ending. It’s just the place where you stop the story.” ― Frank Herbert

Footnotes


  1. These threads may morph beyond drafts into longer posts at a later time. However, due to the dual sword of time constraints and general tendencies of staying on the hedonic treadmill of perfection, amateurs like me fall into a writers block. [return]
  2. 733 words to be precise. I wanted to convey the essence of the post within 5-6 minutes, and assuming an average reading speed of about 130 wpm, this is roughly 715 words. To denote the significance of the constraint I’m imposing I decided to choose a nearby number with magical properties. 733 belongs to a class of numbers called balanced primes, which follow the property of being equidistant from the previous and next primes. It’s conjectured that there are infinitely many balanced primes. [return]
  3. That said who knows, maybe enough of these shorts will coagulate around a general theme for me to turn into a longer post :) [return]

Written April 12, 2020. Send feedback to @bhaprayan.

Amorphous Text, A Socratic Exploration →