Some helpful pieces on planning and study

I’ve been finding a number of really helpful pieces on different aspects of planning, research and study recently, and here share three of my favourites. Here is a belter of a piece by the wonderful Katherine Firth about ‘Taking a critical distance break’, explaining the very helpful process of stepping back from a project you’re engrossed in, to give yourself time and head space to see what’s really going on, what’s most important, how things fit together, etc. Here is a very helpful piece on Continue reading →

Sharing possessions in Acts

I recently gave a paper to a joint meeting of the Book of Acts and Use and Influence of the New Testament seminars at the British New Testament Society meeting in Liverpool. My full paper, offering an exegetical discussion of the sharing of possessions in Acts, especially in the early chapters, continues to be available for download for a short time here. It’s strictly work in progress, so please don’t cite it as a published work. I’d welcome feedback and comments. I’m also now making Continue reading →

A very interesting piece on improving your writing

Scott Young is a fascinating man; he thinks hard about ‘ultralearning’, how we learn and how we can learn better. Here’s a link to a fascinating piece he’s recently published online, reflecting on how he might improve his writing (he’s already published five books!). It made me think a bit about how I work on my writing, while I’m working on a commentary on Acts, and writing articles and papers along the way. It also made me reflect on how I help others—primarily my PhD Continue reading →

A fascinating discussion of Matthew Novenson’s The Grammar of Messianism

There’s a really interesting conversation about Matthew Novenson’s fascinating The Grammar of Messianism going on at Syndicate, the home of many such book discussions, at present. A key claim of the book is that it helps to think about ‘Messiah’ passages in Jewish and Christian texts as engaging in a ‘language game’ in which they use the term in a variety of ways—and this is better than the ‘idealist’ tradition of constructing one view of ‘Messiah’ and then reading the texts in the light of Continue reading →

My slides on improving your academic writing

I led a workshop at Trinity College, Bristol’s postgraduate research conference on improving your academic writing today, drawing on lots I’ve learned over the years of writing myself, and supervising and editing others who write. Here are the slides for those who’d like them. See also my review of How to Fix Your Academic Writing.