I do my proofreading using a text-to-speech engine. Sometimes, I use Dragon NaturallySpeaking to create a document or a blog post. Other times I type it out. But either way, I like to have the computer read it back to me (NaturallySpeaking makes this very convenient). Listening to someone (or a computer) read my words out loud helps me catch things that I would otherwise miss. Sentences that sound great in my head sound awkward on being read out loud. Hearing them lets me catch awkward and incoherent sentences. More importantly, I hear typographical errors and incorrect words even when I don’t see them.
I have been experimenting with Brain.fm. I am finding it very helpful. It has a lifetime subscription option that I bought through the Boing Boing store. I don’t know how long that offer will be available, but with the discount through Boing Boing the price was less than a year of headspace.
To overcome procrastination I’m going to “eat the frog” as my first task in my day. When I get into the lab at 4 in the morning, I usually start with some reading. First, I read the blogs (bad habit). Then I read a journal article (much better). During the election I was hopeless. I barely read science. I’m on a bit of a blog detox these days and my reading habits are much improved.
Based on some of the writing tips on medium.com, I separated my writing routine into three steps: brainstorm, write, edit. It was amazing how easy it was to write in the morning when I had the topic all picked out from the day before. There are some great writer communities on medium.com.
I watched this video about the hemispheres in the brain by CGP Grey. It has a short review of the phenomena surrounding split-brain patients. What was really provocative was the idea that maybe we all have a dual personality and that only one side is verbal. When I first watched this, I had a really odd feeling of recognition, like there was something missing from my life that I had just discovered.