Apr 2010

Will write for food

Bit of a brazen post this, but I figured it’d be worth a shot. Some requests…

I’m currently planning to expand upon my Master’s research in the form of a PhD. There’s really not much work being carried out on the psychodynamics of sustainability… analysing our ecological psychosis… the schizophrenia of the group mind… call it what you will. Gregory Bateson’s pioneering work has largely been left to gather dust despite the incredible importance and relevance it holds for modern civilisation.

Certainly there have been some books written on the subject, often rather good ones too, but really not enough to do the subject justice. Also, they have a tendency to be somewhat inaccessible. Bateson’s own writing can be quite difficult to digest and while both Narby’s Intelligence in Nature and Kidner’s Nature and Psyche have much to offer the dedicated academic, they are unlikely to ever reach a large audience.

It’s my aim — and yes, it’s a lofty one, but why set the bar low? — to produce a PhD thesis that can be successful both academically and also from the standpoint of the educated but non-specialist reader. The subject deserves to be released from the confines of the ivory tower.

However, while I’m putting together my proposal and continuing my research now, it’ll be a year or so before I get officially underway. I’ve missed the various funding deadlines for this year and, well, there’s other stuff happening that preclude the kind of intensive, full-time dedication that starting a PhD might entail.

Therefore, I’m kind of twiddling my thumbs right now, which is why I’m writing this post. My readership is small but select and I’m hoping some of you might have a bit of advice to share. Obviously any input with regards to putting together a PhD proposal (in the broad field of philosophy) would be greatly appreciated. But in the meantime I’m also looking for one or two things…

Firstly, I’m a bit of a dab hand when it comes to building websites and web applications. It’s been my main source of income for a while but work has slowed down considerably of late so I’m looking to expand my client base. I have a web portfolio, with the rather grandiose title of Ring Forth Web Studio, which you might point people towards if you hear they need sites built (WordPress installations and ColdFusion programming in particular).

Secondly, I’d really love to know how to go about earning a crust (or even half a crust) out of freelance writing. Yes, I’m aware that’s the Holy Grail for every blogger but if, dear reader, you’ve worked out how to achieve it, I’d be eternally grateful for your advice. You can either leave a comment here, or contact me via email at ‘jim’ at ‘numero57’ dot ‘net’. There’s also a web form over at ringforth.com for getting in touch about web work.

I’m aware that this is something of a stab in the dark, but I figured it was worth a try. Thanks for reading. Normal service shall resume soon.

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