On July 14, 2014, I published the first three posts on this blog, starting three categories I still enjoy writing about: Words Worth Defending, Sustaining Books, and Browsing through Bartlett's. I haven't had quite as busy a writing day since then, or at least a publishing day -- but I wanted to get a sort of portfolio out into the world as soon as I started.
More than 260 posts and three years later, I'm proud of what I've accomplished -- not only the five times that I've finished in the top ten posts for a given month (pending June's contest!) and the two of those that were first- and second-prize winners among thousands posted, but also what blog-writing has, literally, done to my brain.
I love words -- the English language in particular, but also the Scots and French words I've picked up from family and teachers. But setting up particular categories among my loves has been educational. I find that when I'm thinking about a particular topic, I find things that fit a category, and -- ta da! -- here's a post for you. (For instance, talk of Bastille Day and just "mid-July" had me thinking of the anniversary, and here I am.)
I still pass the sign in a neighborhood parking lot which warns of "PERVIOUS CONCRETE PAVEMENT" and how to act if you want to put anything on it. That word "pervious" was my first Word Worth Defending, and it still catches my attention on the sign.
I still catch errors in printed texts, or even in spoken ones, and line up ideas about how to write about defending the correct usage of a word. But the rare words, the ones that "don't get out much," as I described "pervious," are still the ones I write about for fun.
The tension between "I need something for the blog" and "Oh, that'd be fun to write about" is a happy tension for me. I rarely "need" something to write as much as I want to narrow down my choices.
My imagination has developed well in these three years. From an early writing prompt in the series called This Blogger Life, I wrote about wanting to meet Robert Louis Stevenson. Thanks to a clever comment wondering what would happen if we met, I imagined visiting with him. He even showed up recently as a member of an imaginary committee which was examining my writing. (I owe you a cup of tea for that, folkloric!) All of that sort of imaginary visiting was beyond my imagination three years ago.
I'm usually more academic and, well, Serious. I love explaining the origins of things, whether they're terms from other languages or from pastimes not many people have (such as music). I still don't like getting upset about missed or misused words, but I find myself calmer about language now -- I have this forum in which to blow off steam, calm down, and set down what should be done to help out our language.
Thanks for reading, whether you've been here for three years now or just happened by today. You make me aware I'm not doing this just for my own pleasure, although that happens -- I hope I'm doing it to please you, too.
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