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practice

What to say?

Hey. Do you think it’s possible for someone to have something to say every day?

Do you say something every day?

Do you talk to at least one person every day? (Even if that person is yourself?)

Then you’re probably thinking and processing information every day.

Granted, posting a blog is like talking to yourself, because no one is there… yet. And you have no idea if anyone will even see it. So yeah, it’s weird.

But it’s a recording of your thoughts.

And you think every day. I promise.

Me too.

(I didn’t even know what I was going to say in here, but when I started writing, it got me thinking. Writing can do that. Try it out.)

Categories
practice Thoughts

Use Your Words

Words are always important.

There are so many to choose from.

And when you put them in a certain order, they create meaning, a message, or a feeling that can affect another person significantly, either positively or negatively.

That’s why writing is so important. And learning to write well is a valuable skill.

We are a text based generation. So much communication is by text. And because we can remove ourselves from the words, they can be quite damaging. They can contain less feeling, compassion, and human connection, which ultimately can cause strife and conflict.

For the peace of humanity, let’s become better writers.

It is possible to use a better choice of words in the right order to convey feeling, connection, and compassion.

Thank you so much for reading this. I really appreciate it.

(See, that wasn’t so hard.)

Categories
practice Thoughts

Always Something To Write About

Every day is a new adventure.

That’s why it should be easy to write something every day.

Of course, some days are more exciting or interesting than others.

That doesn’t mean I’m going to tell you about my day today.

I’m just telling you about about my day. (I just made that up, about about.)

I’m telling you that today was different, and interesting (probably not to you) and different than yesterday. Sure, that may be obvious, but the point is that you can write about something every day, even if all you did was lay in bed all day. You could write about that.

So, if you could write about the things that happened that day, or what you learned that day, or even about about that day, the meta, or higher concepts that that day represents, then you pretty much have an unlimited amount of material to write about.

See, I didn’t even tell you that I went for a walk.

(Because it wasn’t interesting.)

(Although very sunny. Which is interesting around here ūüėČ

Write.

Categories
practice

How to be prolific

It’s true. You can have a blog and write every day and no one will see it.

You actually have to tell people about it. You have to advertise. But only if you want people to see it.

I’m not sure I’m there yet.

I do like people seeing my stuff and commenting and me being able to interact with them, but you know what it is? I don’t think this is good enough.

And that’s the Resistance talking.

This is just my scratch pad, my practice space. I’m not trying to be super wise, solve someone’s problem, be entertaining or interesting. I’m just writing, or talking something. Anything. Just so I can practice doing it every day.

Maybe someone will see it. Or maybe I’ll be brave enough to tell someone about it. Or maybe once I get the every day habit down, I’ll start a different one.

Or a bunch of them.

I could literally have 7 different blogs where I post once a week on each one by writing every day.

That actually sounds fun.

That would be being prolific.

But it would need to be seven different topics.

Well, watch out.

Categories
Uncategorized

Write to write

When you want to write something and don’t know what to write, the best thing to do is…

write.

Seth says there’s no such thing as ‘writers block’. It’s like saying you have talkers block. Do you ever get the experience that you just can’t talk because you have nothing to say?

Sure, you can choose not to talk because you don’t have anything meaningful to say, but it’s a choice. Not some ethereal thing that is forcing you to not talk.

It’s the same with writing.

That’s what I did just now.

I didn’t know what I was going to write. So I started writing that idea that I had learned from Seth Godin. Everyone knows something about something. Pick a subject.

The problem is that we don’t think it’s good enough. That’s why we choose not to write. That is what blocks us. So it’s more like perfectionism block. Or insecurity block.

But writing is like speaking. You know how to open your mouth, push the air through and form words with your lips and tongue. You also know how to push on little buttons that have letters on them in a certain order to create words.

Just do that.

Zebra. Jack-o-lantern. Purple. Wind. Meaning. Help. Curious. Love.

See, I did it.

It doesn’t have to make sense.

You could probably put words in a better order than that.

In fact, the job of choosing words, and putting them in an order that makes sense is what you have to do when you talk. So, that is not unique to writing. Writing is just a different medium to transfer meaning using words.

So if you think you have writers block. Just start talking. Then transfer that to text.

There’s no such thing as talkers block.

Categories
Uncategorized

Practice

It’s one of those mornings where I wake up way before my alarm clock.

I woke up thinking about one thing. This blog. I thought, “Why don’t I write here more often?” I’ve had this for years and totally neglected it. But I keep paying the annual fee for the domain name because I don’t want to lose it.

Why?

Because it’s historical. It’s my legacy. It is what I was thinking about or what was important to me during a particular time.

Now, sure, I have lots of journals that are full of more of my thoughts and feelings throughout the years. And I even have a bunch written in 750words.com over the years too because that’s a private, online space that drives you to write at least 750 words a day. So, I’ve been writing in there recently for the past few months to try and get into a practice of writing every day. I have entries as far back as 2011.

But here, this is different. Kind of.

This is public.

Someone could actually read this. Not that they would, or that many will find it. It might as well be private if I don’t advertise it. ‘Security by obscurity’ I say. This is like a grain of sand on the beach. Someone could touch it, but it’s unlikely anyone will.

But still. They could.

So, you write different when it’s public. You’re a little more careful about what you say, and you pay attention to the quality.

I think that’s why Seth says to do it every day.

Write something worth reading. Write something that people might read.

And write poorly. At first.

If you keep doing it every day, you’ll get better. You can’t help but get better. How long will it take? It depends on how much effort you put into getting better. But showing up every day, whether you feel like it or not, that’s how you do it. That’s how you become pro.

And that’s the subject of his latest book, The Practice.

I haven’t even read it yet (because it hasn’t been released or come in the mail) but listening to his interviews and podcasts he’s doing to talk about it I can get the hint. Plus, it’s something he’s been saying for years.

So, here’s the start of my practice… Again.

You can see all my previous starts on this blog dating back to 2008.

They are other places too. On YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Periscope, Tumblr, TikTok, along with other personal web sites with different domain names.

I dabbled, and played around with each of those when they first came out. Because I like to create and connect with people. But I never went deep, or stuck with them.

I don’t know why.

Maybe because, at the core, I’m a creative person, and I don’t always like to do what everyone else is doing.

Or, I can’t keep up with the practice.

So, here I am again. What’s old is new. I’d like to start practicing. On my own space.

We’ll see what happens.

Categories
On the road

Episode 10 – Create together

 

Categories
Thoughts

750 Words

Here’s the site I mention:

http://750words.com/

Categories
Thoughts

Doing Something Curious

Categories
Thoughts

I Think I’ll Write a Book

Categories
Thoughts

Got a Book in You?

Jim Kukral’s “How to Catch Happy” ebook

Pat Ferdinandi’s “How to Get Published” video series

Categories
Thoughts

Ideas Come and Go – Give Them Life

There are a lot of things I haven’t done.

Let me re-phrase that.¬† There are a lot of things I had the idea to do, planned on doing, then just didn’t follow through with it.¬† (There are even more things I haven’t done that I haven’t thought of doing yet.)

But…

There are a lot of things I have done.

So, have I done things because I’ve thought of a lot of things to do, and at least some of them have happened?¬† Does the principle that the guy with the most home runs has the most strike-outs apply here?¬† Or he who has the highest number of stolen bases also get thrown out the most?

Does a lot of success necessarily mean a lot of failure?

I saw a quote today that says, “Success and failure. We think of them as opposites, but they’re really not.¬† They’re companions – the hero and the sidekick.” by Laurence Shames

To me, that means that in order to do great things, you need to do a lot of things. 

And the way to do a lot of things is to get the ideas from your head out into reality, so they have some form and substance.

And the way to do that is to write.

That’s why blogging is so good for you.

Categories
Thoughts

Birthing Hurts (but it’s exhilarating too)

There’s something really amazing about writing.¬† Do you know what it is?

It’s like giving birth.

Kind of.¬† (I don’t want to get too deep into the analogy here.)¬† It’s like creating something, producing something.¬† It’s taking your thoughts and pushing them out onto the paper (or screen.)¬†

And sometimes it’s painful.¬† It doesn’t come out right, or we might be a little ashamed of it.¬† Why is it always uncomfortable when someone is standing over our shoulder, watching what we are writing?¬† (Everyone knows the old trick of cupping your¬†hand or holding your arm¬†real close to your pencil when someone walks by or tries to look at what you’re writing.)¬† Only after you are complete are you ready to show it to someone.¬† But even then, it’s still a little unnerving because you hope they don’t make fun of it, or criticize it.¬† It’s your baby.

And most people are sensitive to that with real babies.¬† They don’t say, “Well that’s an ugly one, what did you create that for?”¬† (Even though they may be thinking it.)

Everyone realizes that the¬†process of giving birth and bringing a new child into the world is so amazing that it doesn’t matter what it looks like, this mother has done such a tremendous thing, she should be praised and honored.¬† And what she produced should be loved, protected and handled with the utmost care.

Shouldn’t we treat other things that people create in the same way?

It’s Exhilarating

The other point is that producing something is exhilarating.¬† Maybe because it’s so painful.¬† Just like any great accomplishment.¬† If it takes hard work, it feels good when you’re complete, and you can take pride in what you’ve accomplished.

If it’s easy, there’s no reward.¬† No pain, no gain.

So I’d like to create more.¬† I’d like to have more babies – mind babies – getting ideas from my mind out into the world.¬†

That means writing and making things happen.

What about you?

Categories
Web sites

NaNoWriMo

I found something new… again.

An online friend pointed me to this site and challenge.  Did you know that November is National Novel Writing Month?  They call it NaNoWriMo for short.  And the challenge is for you to write a novel in 30 days. 

The only requirement:    50,000 words

Sure, there are few other stipulations like you can’t use stuff you’ve already started, or copy something, but basically everyone who¬†writes 50,000 words wins!¬† And all those words don’t even have to make sense. You can’t type the same word over and over again, but their definition of ‘novel’ is pretty loose – basically, whatever you say it is.

I thought it might be a fun challenge, and something I could get the kids into also.¬† They have a Young Writer’s Program where they set age appropriate goals for word counts and have some really cool resources for the kids.

You can also find local writing groups who organize write-ins where they all get together and write, I guess.¬† I haven’t been to one, but it sounds like fun because you have kind of a support group.

I don’t read novels and wasn’t really interested in writing one, never mind coming up with a story, but I read somewhere that “writing is the key to all wealth,” so I thought it would be good for me to get into the habit of writing.¬† Since I didn’t have a storyline in my head, the only place I could think of to get stories from is my childhood.¬† And I realized that there is a lot of material there.

So I just started writing about funny things that happened when I was a kid.  Things about my house, dog, friends, elementary school, my brothers, our pool, etc.  Plus my kids are always asking me what I did when I was young, so I thought it would be a good idea to get them down on paper.

If you divide 50,000 by 30 you get a daily quota of 1,667 words, so my goal was to hit the quota every day.  Well, I actually made it each day for the first 3 days.  I made it to 5001 words!  

Then, I fell off the bandwagon.¬† I’ve continued to write each day, but haven’t made the quota.¬† I’m hoping to catch up this weekend.

It’s still not too late to get started, you can join any time.¬† I know I should have posted this before I started, so you wouldn’t be so far behind, but I only found out about it 2 days before November.

Maybe if I get into the habit I’ll be able to post more entries in my blog.¬† In fact, I’ll probably create some as part of my ‘novel’.¬† It really is a mish mash of stuff, such as a little history or explanation about my family, crazy made up scenes that lead to an unbelieveable climax then end, some poetry, and streams of consciousness.¬† They say editing is for December.

Write, write, write!

Categories
Thoughts Web sites

The Best Writing Advice Ever

Experienced another breakthrough epipany – so I must write.

I’m an Actor

I’ve been acting like a writer lately at work, interviewing people and writing their stories.¬† I guess the reason I’m doing it is because it’s kind of fun for me, even though¬†I’m a total amatuer (although I have been told by some writers that I’m not bad, which is probably why I keep doing it.)

I Have Good Friends

Last week I was talking to a friend of mine who is a writer and I was telling her how I was kind of dabling in her business.  Since she is very nice and friendly, she gave me some good advice: read copyblogger.com.

It’s kind of funny because it’s one of those things that have been right under my nose for a long time and I never saw it.¬† It is one of Seth Godin’s recommended blogs, so why didn’t I think it was worthwhile?

Love at First Read

So when I went to copyblogger.com I quickly scanned the blog post titles and immediately fell in love.¬† Then I started looking at the most popular posts and said, “where have you been all my life?”¬† I guess I must really be a wannabe writer if the stuff they talk about on copyblogger gets me so jazzed. (Of course those who know me know that I get jazzed about a lot of things pretty easily.) (Which you might be able to tell from my posts.) (But never mind that, this time it’s for real.)

Here is the Best Advice Ever

So here’s one of the most popular posts on copyblogger:¬† 10 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer

Which is why I got motivated again and immediately wrote this post.

No, Actually it’s This One

But then I read this one: The Two Most Important Words in Blogging

And totally blew it in this post.¬† Do you think it was because I didn’t want to or just habit?¬† There, now I can say I used them.

Then Again, Maybe…

I do love writing when I produce something good.¬† But I am pretty slow. It takes me a long time to craft a sentence sometimes.¬† Then later, I remember how hard it was and how long it took, so I wimp out and don’t do it again.

Which is why this post grabbed my attention and gave me some good stuff: How to Write an Article in 20 Minutes.

Advice is Cheap… and Powerful

I could keep going, but you get the point.  A friend gave me a little advice, read copyblogger, and that turned out to be the best writing advice ever.