in Thoughts and whatever

Back to the blog and recommitting to self

blogging

Back in April — after months of thinking and longtime neglect at the old blog home — I announced I’d begin transitioning away from InterstateQ.com. I had blogged there for nearly ten years, but it was time for a change, a fresh start and a new online home.

I’ve blogged here a bit off and on since then, but nothing regular has come out of it. In much the same way daily writing at the day job put the kibosh on my personal writing at the old blogging home, the same obligations, stresses and work requirements have coalesced to create much the same problem here. Hold habits die hard and new(/renewed) ones are difficult to (re-)establish.

But, that’s going to change, and it needs to change. Writing for me is a personal joy. That personal passion has certainly come in handy at work, but I don’t want to lose those special sparks of inspiration and the personal satisfaction that comes from writing. In short, it’s time to recommit to self, in addition to the passion and zeal I have for my work-related journalism.

I’ve spent quite a bit of time brainstorming ideas for re-energizing my personal blogging. Lots of notions came to mind. Several stand out, and you’ll start seeing more regular blogging here.

In particular, two ideas struck a chord with me. Both are relatively simple: a weekly recap and a post of curated headlines. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know. Lots of people do similar posts. They certainly aren’t original ideas, but they are useful — personally and, hopefully, for my many family, friends and followers — if done right, regularly and well.

I’m hoping these two new additions to my week can serve personally as a kind of reflective exercise. More broadly, I want the posts to be beneficial or enjoyable to others — regular features in your own online reading.

It is my fervent personal goal to re-energize my regular, personal blogging. In college and in the first half of my seven-year stint at the day job, I’d taken great care to blog daily or almost daily. Rebirthing that commitment, habit and ritual will take time and dedication. Starting off with these two regularly scheduled posts — the weekly recap and curated headlines — seem to be easy re-entry points. You’re more than welcome to join along in this journey.

A bit more…

The weekly wrap

After spending an entire week at work cranking out original writing and reporting, doing much the same on my personal time can be difficult. But, there’s a great strength, I think, in each week’s five days of word smithing, editing, curating and reading. If anything, it exposes me to a significant amount of news, ideas, arts, entertainment and cultural trends. Items of interest and impact come in and out of my view every day — either through email, social media sites or in mailed  (yes, we still get them) pamphlets, press releases or publications that land on my desk. Many times, they pass right along, without reflection, introspection or contextualization. What better way to wrap up each week than by actually taking some time to do a weekly wrap and include the kind of reflecting that oftentimes doesn’t fit into each day’s schedule. It’s healthy for me and hopefully useful to those who’ve followed my reporting and want more context or personal insight on the items I’ve written, passed along or just haven’t yet had a chance to share.

The weekly wrap will be published on Saturdays or Sundays each week, the first beginning tomorrow.

Curated headlines

For the second weekly post, I’ve taken great inspiration on this simple idea from former News & Record editor John L. Robinson’s blog and his weekly round-up, “Sunday Sampler” (here’s a recent installment I found particularly interesting). John’s sampler has become a regular go-to for me; a quick-and-easy glance at news of import across the state.

Similarly, I wonder what kind of great reporting isn’t being highlighted among LGBT and other media? ThinkProgress’ LGBT writers used to publish the “Morning Pride,” a daily round-up of important headlines. That was similar in scope, but I’m aiming a bit higher and deeper here. Like John’s Sunday Sampler, I want to highlight top-notch journalism, not just a daily rundown of yesterday’s headlines. Unlike John, the outlets I’ll be highlighting aren’t dailies and they don’t have Sunday editions — when most daily papers publish their in-depth human interest profiles or investigative pieces.

So, the idea is a bit different, but still quite similar. I’ll scour LGBT and other niche publications for stories and features that stand out among the crowd and bring you a midweek post that highlights the best of them.

The weekly curated headlines (I’ve not yet figured out a snazzy name) will begin this month.

(Photo Credit: “Anonymous Account,” via Flickr. Creative Commons.)

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