What do authors think about perceived symbolism in their work?

Famous Novelists on Symbolism in Their Work and Whether It Was Intentional, from Mental Floss

Ralph Ellison

Ralph Ellison (from Wikipedia article)

Here’s an interesting article about what authors think about perceived symbolism in their works. A 16 year-old high-school student in 1963 decided to go directly to the source and ask 150 famous authors whether they intentionally placed symbolism in their writings, and what they thought about the symbolism that readers and critics perceived.

I especially liked one of Richard Hughes’ answers, “Have you considered the extent to which subconscious symbol-making is part of the process of reading, quite distinct from its part in writing?” This reminded me that reading is also an art in the exercise of imagination. Iris Murdoch went even further, making the point that, “There is much more symbolism in ordinary life than some critics seem to realize.” Ralph Ellison noted that symbolism is unavoidable because, “Man is a symbol-making and –using animal. Language itself is a symbolic form of communication.”

As an avid reader and aspiring author this was a refreshing and encouraging article. I feel that I should stop worrying about how all the parts of my story will fit together, what they will mean and how to manipulate it all like some puppeteer. The gist of the survey results for me is that authors sometimes do make conscious choices in placing symbolism in their works, but that it is not necessary to impose it artificially. Just tell the story and let both the author’s and reader’s natural and innate interpretation of symbols enrich it.

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Cool Web Design Tools

I just ran across two very helpful website design tools, check them out:
Adobe Kuler and CSSTableGenerator

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Is Screen Reading Stunting Our Reading Comprehension?

This article was recently posted on the Columbus Metropolitan Library’s Facebook Page: Serious reading takes a hit from online scanning and skimming, researchers say.  It is interesting that I had just seen this Alphabet of the Obsolete which mentions several print media including (D) dictionaries, (E) encyclopedias, (N) newspapers and (Y) yellow pages.  As a computer scientist I had never worried too much about obsolescence, taking the attitude more of “Good riddance!”  But what if screen reading is robbing us of the comprehension we used to have when we read a print resource?  Now that is something to think about, rather than dismiss criticisms of digital media as unfounded Luddite worries.  On a related note, here is a TED talk about Jeopardy champion Ken Jennings and his trivia battle with IBM”s Watson Computer, “Ken Jennings: Watson, Jeopardy and me, the obsolete know-it-all

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The Ideal Length of Everything on the Internet

The Ideal Length of Everything on Online

Here is an interesting article from The Next Web that discusses the research on the ideal length of everything on the Internet – very interesting and useful for content producers!

The Next Web is a technology focused media company founded in 2008. It manages several initiatives focused on international technology news, business and culture.If you haven’t read The Next Web Blog before, it’s pretty interesting!

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How do I keep up to date with Web Design?

I was recently asked how I keep updated on web design trends and technologies.  Good question!  For the last couple of years I have relied on my instructors at Columbus State Community College to tell me what’s what.  As I am now coming to the end of my CSCC Web Developer program, I guess I will have to take my education into my own hands.  A quick googling of “latest trends in web design” brought me to WDL, aka the Web Design Ledger.  I started reading their article “Web Design Trends in 2012,” then read their “Inspiring Symmetrical Photography” post.  I’m hooked!

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SOS Message!

The following is a test of a post sent by my new Android App, SMS+SOS.  This app can send an emergency message including GPS coordinates to multiple contacts and social media platforms using a few keystrokes from an Android Smartphone:

My current location is: Latitude = 40.12659637, Longitude = -83.1597256

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Post via SMS

A post to my blog via SMS

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