Annotation/Conversation

By Terry Elliott (@Tellio)
The word “derivative” has been used in some circles as a synonym for unoriginal, but I think that to derive is also to create and thrive. Because of the negative connotations of “derivative” I have come to prefer the term “translation” to describe what I have been doing over the last year in most of my online writing.   Let me show you each week how I do this using some of my favorite tools and then I will suggest some fun, low barrier to entry, doorways into digital writing and #digiwrimo
The simplest form of digital “translation” might be annotation.  The tools needed to do it are accessible. If you are new to digital writing, perhaps you might want to try to build your repertoire by trying some low barrier-high participation tools.  One of the best of these is Canva.  
Canva is breath of free fresh air.  A week rarely goes by that I don’t use Canva as a translation tool.  For example, I wanted to sell #digiwrimo to others because it fits into what I do and I think it would be a great way for anyone to enlarge their feel for what writing can be and for what writing can become.The site consists of dozens of templates for digital transactions as varied as posters, postcards, tumblr banners, album covers, Pinterest graphics, and even leaderboards! Here’s what I did using the postcard template. 
 
I attached this digital writing to tweets in various Twitter channels I have as well as Google + in a one-person, one-day mini-marketing blitz for #digiwrimo. The interesting bit about Canva is that it naturally encourages other digital activity: blogging, photography, and more and more writing.  And it emboldens one to expand the repertoire by becoming a channel for  your own raw digital materials.  For example, the photo background in the postcard above is one I took this summer.  Now, I keep my phone handy all the time on the farm because I never know when something interesting and useful will avail itself to be used in Canva 
Annotation Prompt #1 Generate a Meme
I use Canva to generate memes like grumpy cat below.  
But there are some simpler, template driven tools that just might be your key into the digital writing space.  Like EinsteinGenerator:  fun, great for you and for kids to share.  Sample below (snark extra). 
 Here are a few more places you can go: ImageGenerator (Magic 8 Ball) ImgFlip (fast) Makeameme (see lots of meme pix at a glance) KnowYourMeme (if you just find yourself enthralled with the whole meme thing) Canva Design School (amazing ways to add to your repertoire).    
All of this is not just about making digital text but of expanding the notion of “text” to include image, sound, and video.  In other words the idea of annotation now includes not only text to image, but also image to text.  It’s a whole new ballgame that you can begin to explore with annotation. Don’t forget to share on social media and in blogs and other digital spaces.  Spread the word and play what James Carse called “the infinite game”.  It really feels like it.

 
UPDATES: I will include #digiwrimo activity on memes here through a Twitter collection. If you want a better chance of being included add #digiwrimoMeme to your tweet: