I've Got Writes!

Teacher, Writer, Proofreader

Archive for the category “Starting a Blog”

Writing Prompt Day 3: A Habit I Wish I Didn’t Have

 

I hate that I have Cool Project ADD. Is that a thing?? If not, it is now.

I have experience with students who struggle with ADD/ADHD or whatever the current acronym is for having an attention deficit. My question is, can a person have ADD when it comes to particular parts of their lives? Namely, for me, it’s This-would-be-a-cool-project! ADD or I-can-do-that! ADD or That-shouldn’t-be-too-difficult ADD. Do these exist for you?

I can’t tell you how many crochet projects I’ve begun and been distracted from before that last stitch. There are some successes, even items I’ve made and given as beautiful gifts to friends. Even sold a few. But, the crates of yarn and bags of partly constructed … hats? gloves? sweaters? tank tops? I don’t remember and have no idea what pattern, if any, I was using when I started.

I have tried to turn an old dresser into a new and improved dresser with an additional shelving unit made from the drawers. I started on it last summer, and the shelf is still not finished. Also, it looked much better in my head–thank you, Pinterest images.

This blog is certainly an ADD issue for me as well. Sticking with a daily writing plan or pattern is challenging, but I’m trying again!!

Back to Day 1: Selfie and 15 interesting facts

Back to Day 2: Background on my blog title

 

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30 Day Writing Prompts Day 2: The Meaning Behind My Blog Name

After playing with words and trying to close in on a certain niche or area of expertise, I finally decided I would just start with a writing blog that would give me a place to vent, to be creative, and to play with different topics of interest. My hope was that I would eventually cultivate a more specific blog. Ummmm … still cultivating.

I enjoy a good play on words, so I’ve Got Writes conveys my freedom (rights) to express my thoughts through the written word. One of the perks of those pesky English homophones. 🙂

I’m trying to catch up, so this will be posted the same day as Day 1. My apologies if that messes with your OCD.

30 Days of Writing Prompts: Day 1

I’ve been inspired by getadatein2016 who happens to be participating in this writing challenge, so I thought I would follow suit. I’m starting late but at least I’m starting. I frequently come across these challenges on Facebook or Pinterest and promise myself I’ll get into writing gear again. Inevitably, scrolling and pinning keeps me from the actual writing part. Ugh. I’m my own worst nightmare.

Anyway, maybe with the continued reminders in my inbox–thank you, getadatein2016–I’ll stick to it. I need to write several today and tomorrow in order to catch up, so let’s get crackin’!

Prompt #1: Post a recent selfie and list 15 interesting facts about yourself. Hmmmmm, this could take a while.

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  1. I’m not compulsively late, per se, but I live mostly in the “-ish” time frame. So if something starts at 7:00, being there at 7-ish could mean 10 ’til or 15 after.
  2. Which brings me to the fact that I’m NOT a morning person. I’ve been accused of speaking Wookiee in the mornings.
  3. I’ve been to Ecuador 3 times visiting my former exchange student/daughter and her family. (One of the best decisions of my life.)
  4. I live in Oklahoma but desperately want to live near a beautiful beach.
  5. I panic in deep water because my swimming skills are lacking.
  6. I hate winter. I hate when the sun goes down at 5:30 PM. I hate cold. (It was 3 degrees farenheit this morning–another reason to stay in bed.)
  7. I’ve been a middle school English teacher for 11 years. I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up, but I need to figure it out because this teacher pay SUCKS!
  8. I’m Dory when it comes to projects. If it’s not something that can be finished quickly, I get bored or frustrated and move on to the next one. The end result always looks better in my head than in reality.
  9. I’m known for my grammar skills. I edit and proofread much better than I write.
  10. I’ve learned to embrace change as I’ve gotten older, though it’s not always easy. Change causes you to grow in ways that you never expected. You get to see what you’re truly made of.
  11. I don’t subscribe to Netflix or dish or cable. Just regular ‘ole tv stations. (Did I mention I’m a teacher?)
  12. My favorite 80s movie is The Princess Bride–“As you wish …”
  13. I’m in my 40s, never been married, and won’t be having any little humans. It’s ok. And, NO, there’s nothing wrong with me. (I would like to find the right man and spend the rest of my life with him.)
  14. I know bits and pieces of Spanish. Wish I were fluent.
  15. I want to travel to Europe, Costa Rica, Jamaica, and any place with beautiful beaches.

Ok, there you have it. Day one writing prompt complete! Score!

15 Minute Writing Challenge

So, I’m trying this writing “15 minutes a day” thing suggested in “If I Wrote a Novel in 15 Minutes a Day, Then You Probably Can Too” by Siobhan Adcock.

It does sound more doable, less daunting than morning pages (mornings, bleh.) I’m more of a night writer. {giggle} Just made me think of Knight Rider. Like, K.I.T.T. the talking car, 1980’s, David Hasselh . . . Anyone with me on that? Anyway . . . ooh, is Downton Abbey back on? Oh Lord, my attention span is . . . I’m thirsty.

Obviously, this 15 minute writing is random nonsense.  Maybe tomorrow.

It worked this time!

The day after the above mumbo-jumbo, I sat down with a couple of quick ideas for my 15 minutes of writing and it turned into 4 and a half hours of writing, researching, and trying to format, tag and categorize a couple of posts. Successful. Draining. Good work for a drizzly day.

How Does Writing Fit?

While perusing my “Blogs I Follow” page, I landed upon the following quote by Suddenly Jamie, and it hit home.

“I find myself wanting to better understand how this writing thing fits into my life.”

That’s exactly what I’ve been doing lately. Smooshed under the layers of work, stress, being too tired from dealing with precious sixth graders all day, trying to keep up with housework (or at least, thinking about it), and plugging through all the chores of life, this thought has been there. Nagging, poking, scratching like a June bug on the window screen of my soul. It’s been annoying me that I “have no time” to write and keep up my blogs. I have no real opportunities to apply myself to writing because all of the necessities of life are getting in the way. I have to do all the things that help me bring home a paycheck, as minuscule as it is. I don’t have a choice. If only I were married to a guy who made enough money that would allow me to be at home, or at a Starbucks or Panera for hours a day, musing, writing, editing my next masterpiece. I guess another way to put that is, “I need a sugar daddy!”

Yeah. That’s what I need. But, that’s not what I’m going to get.

So, how does my writing fit into my life?

Well, as I say to my students, “You need to learn to take responsibility for your actions.” The same stands true for your NON-action. I must take my own advice. I must take responsibility and require myself to write consistently, regardless of all the other distractions. I need to be free from the relentless hounding that I’m not fulfilling all of who I am if I’m not writing. I need the personal satisfaction that what I’m writing matters. If not to anyone else, though I hope some of it does, then to me. It matters. And we make time for the things and people who matter, right? So, it’s time to put on my big girl pants (another mantra that I frequently share with my students) and get on with it, already! Write! Make it happen!

How I’m Learning to Blog

This summer, I have been studying up on how to create and manage a successful blog. I’m working slowly, but diligently to implement what I’ve learned.

Three books have been vitally helpful to me. The first one I read is Create Your Own Blog: 6 Easy Projects to Start Blogging Like a Pro (2nd edition) by Tris Hussey.  It’s a down-to-earth, easy read. (Although, some of the more techie talk is above my head right now, but hopefully, not forever). Trussey uses humor and explains his preferences and why he has those preferences. My general take away from this book so far is listed below:

  • Trussey’s preferred blogging platform is WordPress, though he did discuss the strong points of blogger and Tumblr.
  • WordPress offers a free blogging platform, with options to upgrade for a fee.
  • WordPress.com and WordPress.org are different, in that WordPress. org allows the more tech savvy users to have more ownership by self-hosting their sites.
  • For more professional use, purchasing a domain name is encouraged as soon as you know you’ll stick with it–like consistent posts for three or four months.
  • Visit other blogs in your niche and comment generously and sincerely. This helps build your blogging community and traffic to your blog.
  • Compelling content is key! (I’m very aware that I need work on this).

More information scratched in my notes will eventually be applied. For now, I need to keep writing and reading. I’ll address other parts of the book as I expand my techie skills!

For future reference, the other blogging books I’m reading are WordPress for Dummies and ProBlogger: Secrets for Blogging Your Way to a Six-Figure Income by Darren Rowse and Chris Garrett.

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