Rebooting the website

My own website has been somewhat neglected after the latest spamhack, but I have finally found the time for a full cleanup. It’s been a while since I changed from shared hosting to a VPS solution with Dreamhost, which seems to have worked well for security issues. Now I exported the content of the old website, reinstalled WordPress from scratch, hardened the install as much as possible, and imported the old contents with a new theme. I know several other scholars who use the same theme (Basic Maths), but I have at tweaked it quite a lot for looks and functionality.

More importantly, I plan to do more writing around here, partly by following some advice from Jason Heppler – “Give yourself permission to write poorly” – and partly by pulling in some content from the other places around the web where I write. I also want to include more photography (Instagram counts!). So, this site will become somewhat of a hub for my online activities.

Anyway, let me know if you come across any issues with the new install!

Writing retreat

I was fortunate enough that I could take a week away from home to write, write, write on my book manuscript this summer. I rented a small and simple cabin in Nyvik, about 45 minutes south of Umeå, right on the coast, loaded up with food, books, coffee, chocolate, and one good bottle of beer for each night, and had my wife drive me down there.

My view through the window

Such writing binges are certainly not sustainable in the long run, as I was quite exhausted when I came back home, but I made some serious progress on the book. The problem so far is that I have done tons of writing on the cabin project, but most of it is not book-shaped. So I have spent much time structuring what I have, rewriting it for style and content, and generally stitching it together. Scrivener was very helpful at this stage, making it very easy to see the overall structure and to move things around.

Working in Scrivener

In order to finish the book this fall, I need to continue with a regular writing schedule, taking one bit at a time. I will launch an online writing group using the pomodoro technique over at Ant, Spider, Bee when the semester starts, hopefully that will keep me on track!

Surprisingly good company after a while