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Issue #4 - Lifelong Learning and Other Adventures

Divya Vartika
Divya Vartika
Hi Guys,
Lately, I have been feeling pretty nostalgic about my college days and the reason is a bit strange. For the last few years, I have been learning a lot of new things. In order to keep track of everything, I have been using many productivity tools. These productivity tools are helping me so much that I keep thinking how wonderful it would have been if I had these tools in my college days. The desire to go back to the academic environment has been so strong lately.
When I was in college, these tools didn’t even exist. This fact itself makes me feel so old. 
Anyway, this whole nostalgia for college made me realize how much I enjoy learning. And these days it’s become so much easier to learn anything online. We don’t really need to go to college. At least that’s what I have been telling myself.
Lifelong Learning or a Pursuit of Knowledge is something that keeps my mind active and brings newness in the monotony of daily life. There is simply so much to learn. The moment I start getting bored by one topic, I can easily move on to something else. After all, I don’t have assignments or exams to worry about. Its pure knowledge leading to pure bliss.
Since I have been talking so much about learning in this newsletter, let me also start a new section sharing what I have been learning.
Learning Update
Stoicism - I am not exactly sure what led me to start reading about different philosophies in the first place. But once I started, I got hooked. I am loving learning about Stoicism particularly. Below are the two main resources I have been reading lately.
Happy: Why More or Less Everything is Absolutely Fine by Derren Brown
Learning and Taking Notes - I really wish I knew about this when I was still in school. It would have helped me learn so much better. I have been reading the book - How to take Smart Notes and using Notion to store all my notes. Do check them out.
How to Take Smart Notes: One Simple Technique to Boost Writing, Learning and Thinking – for Students, Academics and Nonfiction Book Writers by Sönke Ahrens
Notion – The all-in-one workspace for your notes, tasks, wikis, and databases.
Writing Updates
I have been trying my best to work on a fantasy novel since the beginning of this year. I wrote around 15k words before hitting a dead end. So I deleted all that and started again. This time I found myself stuck beyond saving at around the 8K word mark. Third time I stopped at 5K myself cos I already realised the story was not moving any further.
What did I learn from all this? Just a lesson that I need a plan before my fourth attempt. And that’s exactly what I am doing right now. I am back in planning mode. Figuring out my characters and their motivations. I am plotting and outlining and doing everything I can to make things a little easier for myself.
Result - I am not in deep despair. Rather, I am actually enjoying the planning process and looking forward to the writing phase. 
I know this is an enormous project and I will need all the patience and motivation I could muster to keep myself from giving up. I have heard making a public commitment helps in staying accountable. So, let me take this moment to thank you all for helping me stay accountable.
Now let’s move on to all the interesting things I want to share with you all
Interesting things I came across this week
I read a wonderful short story on Kindle Unlimited. I admit I was drawn towards this book purely because of its colourful cover. I know one must not judge a book by its cover, but I think we all do it either consciously or subconsciously.
The story is still amazing. This book made me realise human emotions are universal. No matter time or location, people feel the same emotions. It’s a great read. Do check it out.
Zikora by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Netflix has a lot of good content. I found this series just by chance. Love, Death & Robots is an animated series based on different short stories. The stories have a very grim and serious take on life in general. Much like what Black Mirror did. But the best part is the animation style which keeps changing in each episode.
It’s a super quick watch. The episodes are not more than 20 mins (the shortest is like 6 min long) and easily bingeable.
Love, Death & Robots (TV Series 2019– ) - IMDb
This Week's Posts
In the last week’s letter, I talked about Shadow and Bones. I was thinking about it so much that I wrote a post about it.
Shadow And Bones - Books And Show - Shystoryteller
Over the years, I have read so many books. My reading habits have kept changing with time. In this post, I summarize everything I know about reading.
Reading Wisdom From A Bibliophile - Shystoryteller
You can read old issues on my Profile page below
Letters from ShyStoryteller | Revue
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Divya Vartika
Divya Vartika @Divyavartika

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