A couple of wonderful bloggers have given me blog awards lately. I have to tell you, getting these awards does make me really happy–it feels like such a compliment for something I’m having so much fun with, anyway! I’ve gotten a couple at my other blog (the more personal, sometimes whiny one at http://beckylevine.livejournal.com), and I’ve happily and quickly passed those along.
Because a few of these hit kind of at once, though, I decided to take a few minutes and actually think about what I’d like to do here, at Moving Forward on the Writing Path, with the awards. And here’s what I’ve come up with. I’m going to:
- Send warm thanks to the blogger who gave me the award.
- Talk a bit about what the award means and how we can all, if we want, incorporate the goals of the award into our own blogs.
- Pass the award onto a few bloggers who I think deserve the award, and who will–I think–be helpful to you all as writers.
Honestly, I’m going to ignore the usual “requirement” of the awards to re-gift the award to a specific number of blogs. Somehow, for me, that feels a bit too much like quantity versus quality. Not that I don’t think there aren’t hundreds of wonderful bloggers out there, but I’d rather highlight a few of the best than overwhelm everyone with too many places to check out at once.
I may play with the other “game rules” a bit, too! And, obviously, I encourage anyone to whom I give a blog award to do the same. 🙂
So that’s my plan! Hope you all think it’s a good one.
Today: the Honest Scrap Award.
Thank you so much, Shawna at Just Another Day in the Life, for giving me this award.
Here’s what I think about honesty in blogs:
I think one of the fun things about blogging, to be truthful, is the online persona we get to create. Most of us, as writers, often write “better” than we speak. I know I do. My thoughts are more organized, I do better choosing the right words or phrases, and (I think) I’m funnier. At least until (in person) you get to know me a bit more. Is this being honest, though?
I think it is. By deciding which part of ourselves we are presenting at our blogs, we define ourselves more strongly. When I started my LiveJournal blog, my purpose was to have fun and meet (and learn from) other writers–mostly writers of kids’ books. Boy, did that work! When I moved my website to WordPress and started this blog, I decided I wanted it to have a slightly different function. I wanted the conversations to be more narrowly about writing, the tools and the journey, and I wanted to share the ideas and beliefs I’ve formed about writing with other people. To be “honest,” I wanted to use this blog to do a bit more teaching, to pass on my understanding of how this craft works. Within those two different blog worlds, I do my best to be honest. At my LiveJournal blog, I ask questions and talk about problems that are really challenging me. I’m half venting and half looking for answers from writers more experienced than me. At this blog, I try and give my true opinions about the things I think work, the places we have to push ourselves and the tools we have to use.
Why do I think honesty is important in blogs? Well–if we’re lying or covering up what’s going on in our own writing lives, what good is that? It doesn’t help the people reading our blogs, and it sure doesn’t help ourselves. The best thing about the Internet is that it has widened the circle of our writing community, increased the number of voices we can listen to about how to live this life. Honestly makes the most of this community; anything else is a waste of the connections we’re all making.
I know the rules of this award say I should state 10 honest things about myself, but I’m going to fiddle with that a bit and tell you why/how I think the bloggers I’m passing this on to are worth reading for their honesty.
Susan Taylor Brown at SusanWrites. Susan tells us when it’s going well and when it’s not. She lays out in wonderful, helpful detail the tools she uses to write and teach and how every trial plays itself out. She shares her knowledge and experience with incredible generousity. And if you want honest, and a wonderful story, read Susan’s book Hugging the Rock.
Mary Hershey & Robin LaFevers at Shrinking Violet Promotions. You met them here, and you should make their blog a regular read. They admit all the difficulties for introvert writers in putting ourselves out there, and they hold our hands to walk us through the process of actually doing it.
Vivian Lee Mahoney at HipWriterMama. Vivian is always stretching her understanding of the creative process, talking it out with us in her posts, sharing her successes and her not-so-much-successes. This writing thing is of the utmost importance to her, and she is completely open about the amount of work she puts into it, that we all need to put into it.
Lisa Schroeder at Lisa’s Little Corner of the Internet. Lisa published two booksin 2008. Does she act like it’s easy? Nope–she’s completely honest about the struggles and battles it takes to do this kind of work. Just check out the letters she wrote to herself (and shared on the blog) last week: here and here.
Check these blogs out; put them on your regular to-read list. And let me know about the honesty thing–what place to you think it has (or doesn’t) in your own posts?