I receive a great many e-mails filled with advice on how to make the most of my blog, or Facebook, or Twitter, or some other social networking site I belong to. The advice is all good, and I wouldn’t be getting it if I hadn’t subscribed to the newsletters or blogs that are dispensing it. The most important piece of wisdom is to have a purpose for your blog and stay focused. People will read it if it is giving them what they have come to expect. If you wonder all over the place with subject matter, blog directories will have a tough time finding you.
It makes perfect sense, and it is a rule I observe quite strictly on my other blog, “The Writing Life,” which is full of musings, observations, and reflections on the craft of writing. “PRISM,” on the other hand, has a less focused raison d’être. Its tag line is “reflections on the many colors of life,” which allows my thoughts to roam in all directions. In other words, I am breaking all the rules here. Why? Because I don’t really expect the blog directories to find my little philosophical musings on life. Let’s face it; life is a pretty broad topic.
It takes discipline to stick to the subject, and, though I’d like to think of myself as a disciplined writer, there are times when I want to wander off the path and see where my meanderings will take me. This is one of those times. I’m a bit embarrassed to admit, I didn’t start off with a subject in mind. I just put fingers to keyboard and wrote a sentence.
I don’t teach creative writing, but I suspect that those who do may give such an assignment to their students: Just start. Write a word, then another. Write the first thing that enters you mind, no matter how foolish or irrelevant it may seem. Keep going, and see what happens. For those of us who don’t allow ourselves that total lack of discipline, it is both scary and liberating.
So, now I have written an entire blog with no discernable direction, no adherence to the accepted rules of blogging, no real purpose except to write. I apologize to anyone who stumbles across it expecting to find some piece of wisdom on life. I owe you a conclusion. If there is one, it would be this:
If you always walk straight down the road of life, you probably won’t get too lost. On the other hand, you may miss a lot. Every once in a while, why not take an unexpected turn? Why not walk down some unmarked path and see where it takes you? You may just be amazed at what you find.
Bobbi Linkemer is a ghostwriter, book coach, editor, and the author of 14 books. Her articles on all aspects of writing appear on more than 25 article sites on the Web, including top-ranked EzineArticles.com. Bobbi has been a professional writer for 40 years, a magazine editor and journalist, and a writing teacher. She has written about thousands of subjects over the years. With Musings, for the first time, Bobbi is sharing her thoughts on a wide array of topics, from serious to satirical and philosophical to factual.