well, i made it! i hit my goal of writing 300 blog posts before my birthday…and then i stopped posting. not really, but almost! it just happened to be a very busy week: VBS every afternoon and three (!) classes running concurrently for me. add in summer temperatures that are getting warmer every day, and my mornings have been quite full. but i wanted to write a bit about what i learned this year.
- give yourself margin. my goal was to write 300 posts in a year, not to write every day. i had a day off every week plus some sick days built in. that made it feel a lot more spacious and a lot less like work.
- write a series. i wrote two–one about keeping advent and one about celebrating the 50 days of Easter. a series offers focus for the writing. it also relieves the tedium of always reporting what’s happening in our days because there’s not all that much variation: we went to the library! we took a walk! read this neat article! and when you’ve got the long year still in front of you, it feels so good to map out a few days or weeks of writing and maybe even write a few posts early and schedule them to appear on the appointed day. there’s nothing like waking up and already having a post up!
- participate online. of course there are the few sites you always visit, but what about throwing your net a little wider? this year i joined twitter. i know! but it’s become a great way for me to find new people outside my normal homeschool mama blog universe. i also went deeper. also for the first time this year i participated in a MOOC. again, it’s something good to write about, something a little outside my normal byways to think about. i wasn’t taking the classes to improve my blogging, but all the writing and thinking spilled over and made this place richer.
- write for 31 days. i also linked my Advent series with The Nester’s 31 Days series. serious bump in traffic there! i don’t know how many of you are still reading all these months later, but i’m happy to have you! the series gives you a smaller canvas to work on and helps build momentum. it’s really my #1 piece of advice. the convergence of ModPo and 31 Days last October made it easy for me to write nearly every day.
- lower your standards. William Stafford says that when you’re writing and you get stuck, you should lower your standards and keep going. what passes as a blog post certainly got a bit looser this year! i started posting more pictures, more quotes. and every week i had two mini-series–one called Sabbath Rest, a simple image and quote from the lectionary for that day, and one featuring a quote from the archives of the homeschooling magazine called Growing Without Schooling. these posts were restorative to me. i got to spend time reading, pondering, looking. i hope they were of use to you too!
so those are my five bullet points of advice. go forth and write! i can’t wait to see what *you* make!