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Essays by San

How to
Roll Up
Possibly the most delirious depiction of a mundane mechanical action in all of human history. Yet it’s true!

Rolling up a window shade is such a routine everyday activity that it couldn’t possibly be fun to read about. Right? Um, well…

Warnings: (1) This true story is R-rated and unsuitable for children. Contains mindless violence, rampant paranoia, and the murder of plants, ants, and the English language.   (2) This essay is possibly deranged, and certainly unsuitable for the literary influenza élite, so if that sounds like you, please skip it. Or just look at the pictures, which don’t even require that you know how to read!

Calculation by Moonlight
How screwing up in school can raise the biggest question in life.

Maybe I’m really just a sim? Or a bio experiment floating somewhere in a vat of mad-scientist goo? Or, assuming my body actually exists (wait I’ll try slapping myself. Ouch!), I still question whether our “knowledge” is all delusory. Anyway, if you’re interested in high school sex, sports, and philosophy or even if you’re not you should check out this essay, which reads like fiction (a short-short story) except that it actually happened.

Fiction by San

The Job Interview of J. Gordon Gribley A short story.

If you’ve ever fantasized about a different career, and bragged about it to your cats… or found yourself staring into the mirror wondering where your life went… or felt humiliated in a job interview... or stumbled into a seedier neighborhood than you’re used to… you might enjoy this story. (The rest of you should get out more.)

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Word Tales
(click titles below)

Short-short stories.

I call these Word Tales because each brief story depicts people using (or abusing) words, and then…um…climaxes in a single strange word. I guess I should admit that I read dictionaries and language-usage guides for fun. (I was an English teacher for a couple of years, so I’m legally allowed to do this.) Don’t worry, these aren’t disguised didactic definitions or pedantic perorations they’re real short-short stories, just oozing with everything that makes literary types go all moist and dreamy: characters, dialog, a simple plot, and well, that’s about it. Hey, I promise it’s nothing like an English class! Calm now?

Business Writing by San

By “business writing” I mostly mean business-to-business or professional-services copywriting, since I’ve only occasionally worked in the general consumer space. In my opinion, the best business writing should be both interesting and genuine not sound like corporate-speak, marketing-ese, or puffery.
The China Project Three sheets (folder inserts) describing a new business unit of a consulting company.

I wrote and designed three sheets for a consulting company about the challenges of doing business in China. The first describes their new business unit, called “The China Project”; the second, which reads almost like fiction, talks about the Tarim Basin oilfield; and the third sketches typical business scenarios for companies doing business in China.

Conservation Ad Ad concept I created for an organization focused on energy conservation.

I was sub-contracted by an ad agency to help promote an energy-conservation organization. This was a ‘pure creative’ assignment: my job was to provide concepts (headlines, body copy, and visual ideas), not to do the final work. This assignment was a little more consumerish than I usually get, but is still (in a general sense) professional-service oriented.

Consulting Company

Their main brochure

Excerpts from a brochure I created for a business- strategy and IT consulting company.

I wrote, illustrated, and designed a 16-page brochure for a small, élite consulting company with Fortune 500 clients. In this sample I’ve excerpted text from the latter part of the brochure, which contains descriptions of their services. I also show thumbnails (small images) of some of the brochure pages.

Brochure Copy for another consulting company:

An ad agency sent me into a well-known consulting company to conduct a series of interviews with some of their group (department) heads. The goal was either one main brochure, or a series of mini-brochures, about some of the different consulting groups within the main consulting firm.

Communications Consulting

For a world-class university

How I helped a unit of M IT describe what it does.

Sometimes, instead of delivering a packaged result, a client wants me to adopt a very flexible approach, where I provide just the mix of advice and deliverables that their staff needs to complete the project themselves. Read about how I did this for one unit of the Mas sachusetts In stitute of Technology, and how it turned out.

Things I Can’t Show You A brief description of some confidential business writing projects.

There are certain kinds of business writing that I can’t show or even specifically list on this site. This confidentiality is bad for my portfolio, but good for my clients and I take the agreements I sign very seriously. This short piece describes a few types of confidential writing that I do.

Other Writings by San

Technical Writing An overview of the various kinds of tech writing I’ve done.

Tech writing isn’t my main focus. But I do have a strong geeky side, and I’m able to make certain kinds of technical communications less dry and intimidating than what you usually see.

Just for Fun

You can start reading the Just for Fun pieces anywhere, since they’re in no particular order. You might even say they’re disordered which, come to think of it, would be a good frame of mind for you to be in before you read them.
Bird Song I’m trying to think, but those birds outside are driving me nuts!

Scientists think birds are descended from dinosaurs. In other words, T. Rex didn’t go extinct it just evolved into Gwahir the Windlord and Daffy Duck. Don’t believe this? Just listen to them tweet! Oh well, it makes sense to me.

Strategy for Success Just because I’m filled with pathos doesn’t mean I’m pathetic… does it?

I know you’re expecting me to say something profound about the piece, but I can’t, because it isn’t, if you see what I mean. Not only that, but these descriptions are threatening to become even longer than the things they describe.

Love’s Labour’s Tossed A romance piece, believe it or not.

My checkered romantic history was either exciting or depressing, depending on how you look at it. Actually I’d rather you not look at it, but it will only take you seconds to look at this odelet.  (An odelet is like an omelette except you make it with scrambled odes.)

By the way, if you’re offended at my stealing (and warping) a title from Shakespeare… you’re on the wrong website.

The Menu Is Relative What, another bird piece? It’s okay, this one involves haute cuisine.

Sometimes simple things just need to be said, you know? On the other hand, sometimes they don’t. Anyway, I think this piece is fun, but frankly, it won’t leave you a better person or anything.

It’s Not History, It’s My Dinner A little cuisine again, but no birds in this one.

This piece has all the makings of a Hollywood hit: mass violence, religious mania, a cast of thousands, and food! And all in eight lines!

Too Good For Yours Truly More romance. Can you stand it?

I wrote this while under the demoralising influence of Proust, and a particular sonnet by Shakespeare. If you can figure out which sonnet, write to me; you might win something. (You won’t, but you might.)

General Information & Utilities

How to
Contact San
Contact information.

A cartoon-illustrated montage of various ways to get in touch with me, including a text box you can type into directly. Who says contact pages have to be boring?

About San (Professional Version) Brief, professional information about the creator of this website.

A few words about what I do for a living and the services I offer. Told in the third person as though somebody else had written it. (That’s how you know it’s the “professional” version!)

About San (Personal Version) Personal/occupational information about the creator of this web site.

A somewhat longer, and much more personal, version of my bio although it’s still centered on the work I do (since that’s pretty much all I do). Explains my weird name and touches on my even weirder childhood. Told in the first person; illustrated with some of my pencil sketches.

Tell a Friend A way to quickly recommend this website will come up in a separate small window.

I programmed this mini-application to let you easily send someone a link to this website. Before deciding whether to send the message, you may (if you like) read my strong privacy pledge, preview exactly what will be sent, or even transfer the message to your own email program for editing. Mouse over the buttons for a quick explanation of your options. It’s really easy to use!

Site Map You’re already here: ye olde Table d’Contents or (for you webbish types) “Site Map” for Santhology.com.

Studies show that most readers never visit site maps which is understandable, since they’re usually pretty bland. Calm down I mean the site maps, not the readers! Well, maybe the readers too. Anyway, here on Santhology.com, this siteus mapuloso (that’s Latin for site map) is the main way to get around; in fact it’s the only way to find everything that’s currently available.

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Home Page First page of this web site.

On many sites, the home page is the main navigation hub. Other sites do the opposite: their ‘Home’ isn’t much more than a decorative book cover. I’ve taken a middle approach: I try to make the home page interesting, and it links to key sections, but it isn’t the main way to navigate this site map is.

Other Sites by San

I’ve been building websites since the web was invented. However, since this is my writing site, design and programming examples are not very relevant; so the only site listed below is my current graphic arts site, Sanstudio.com. If you’re interested, Sanstudio’s Site Map has more links to other sites I’ve worked on.
Sanstudio.com My graphic-arts website.

You’re currently on Santhology.com, which focuses on my work as a writer; but I’m also an illustrator. (Yes, I’m serious about both.) Sanstudio.com is a graphic-arts site where you’ll find my illustrations, sketches, and award-winning Cartoon Stories for Thoughtful People. You might notice a family resemblance to this site once you get past the home page, anyway.

What’s New

Right now, this whole website is new, so this section doesn’t make sense; but it will. You know, in the future. When there are newer new things.
Thank you for visiting Santhology.com, the writings of Lawrence San.
You may also be interested in Sanstudio.com, featuring cartoon stories, illustration, & design.