Where stories go to die.

These are the unpleasant things I've written - not unpleasant in that they make you feel raw, unsteady emotions, but unpleasant in that they make you pity the author, whose ignorance and lack of talent, presented on his Web site, form a mood-dampening portrait of wasted hours. Yet, I've decided, in the interest of completeness, these pieces should be saved; I should remember my failures, both to avoid future failures, and because each of this pieces is a memory, a little speck of brain that I'd prefer not to toss outright; every written piece is part of me, came from me, and I want to keep them around for perverse nostalgia, even if reading them is an exercise in teeth-grinding. Thus this dead pool, the cabinet of horrors, presented in the hopes that it will be ignored by all but the author.

(This is by no means all of the rot - many more entries will be shuffled out of the autobiography and other sections to find their resting place within.)

Early Abominations
From 1997-1998, the worst of Ftrain.
Monday, October 15, 2001
60 sections.
Later Abominations
Awful writing from 1999 on, when I should have known better.
Monday, October 15, 2001
38 sections.
Failure to Execute
Ideas and concepts that I hoped would get off the ground, but didn't.
Monday, October 15, 2001
2 sections.
March/April Hiatus
Ftrain is on shore leave for a while.
Thursday, March 14, 2002
Administrative Tomfoolery
A place for all the things that need a place.
Thursday, June 20, 2002




Ftrain.com is the website of Paul Ford and his pseudonyms. It is showing its age. I'm rewriting the code but it's taking some time.


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About the author: I've been running this website from 1997. For a living I write stories and essays, program computers, edit things, and help people launch online publications. (LinkedIn). I wrote a novel. I was an editor at Harper's Magazine for five years; then I was a Contributing Editor; now I am a free agent. I was also on NPR's All Things Considered for a while. I still write for The Morning News, and some other places.

If you have any questions for me, I am very accessible by email. You can email me at ford@ftrain.com and ask me things and I will try to answer. Especially if you want to clarify something or write something critical. I am glad to clarify things so that you can disagree more effectively.


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© 1974-2011 Paul Ford


@20, by Paul Ford. Not any kind of eulogy, thanks. And no header image, either. (October 15)

Recent Offsite Work: Code and Prose. As a hobby I write. (January 14)

Rotary Dial. (August 21)

10 Timeframes. (June 20)

Facebook and Instagram: When Your Favorite App Sells Out. (April 10)

Why I Am Leaving the People of the Red Valley. (April 7)

Welcome to the Company. (September 21)

“Facebook and the Epiphanator: An End to Endings?”. Forgot to tell you about this. (July 20)

“The Age of Mechanical Reproduction”. An essay for TheMorningNews.org. (July 11)

Woods+. People call me a lot and say: What is this new thing? You're a nerd. Explain it immediately. (July 10)

Reading Tonight. Reading! (May 25)

Recorded Entertainment #2, by Paul Ford. (May 18)

Recorded Entertainment #1, by Paul Ford. (May 17)

Nanolaw with Daughter. Why privacy mattered. (May 16)

0h30m w/Photoshop, by Paul Ford. It's immediately clear to me now that I'm writing again that I need to come up with some new forms in order to have fun here—so that I can get a rhythm and know what I'm doing. One thing that works for me are time limits; pencils up, pencils down. So: Fridays, write for 30 minutes; edit for 20 minutes max; and go whip up some images if necessary, like the big crappy hand below that's all meaningful and evocative because it's retro and zoomed-in. Post it, and leave it alone. Can I do that every Friday? Yes! Will I? Maybe! But I crave that simple continuity. For today, for absolutely no reason other than that it came unbidden into my brain, the subject will be Photoshop. (Do we have a process? We have a process. It is 11:39 and...) (May 13)

That Shaggy Feeling. Soon, orphans. (May 12)

Antilunchism, by Paul Ford. Snack trams. (May 11)

Tickler File Forever, by Paul Ford. I'll have no one to blame but future me. (May 10)

Time's Inverted Index, by Paul Ford. (1) When robots write history we can get in trouble with our past selves. (2) Search-generated, "false" chrestomathies and the historical fallacy. (May 9)

Bantha Tracks. (May 5)

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