I write like I Make a Quilt, in bits and pieces

Here at ChicagoNow our community manager is forcing us against our will to describe our writing style. Just kidding, he merely suggested it for the Blogger's life theme this week. I've never really thought about the writing process before so it was fun to ponder. I decided that like most things in life, I write like I make a quilt, in bits and pieces.

I rarely sit down and bam, write a post and publish. I participate in the Blogapalooza most months just to prove that I can but it is not my normal mode. Usually I have a bunch of ideas in various stages of orange quilt collage re markeddevelopment.

Sewing a quilt is the same way. Maybe once have I started and finished a quilt in a week. I do a little here, a little there and eventually, there's a quilt!

Plus I have other distractions. I go and sew sometimes in the middle of writing. Or I go on Facebook and waste time like an addicted fool do research for my blogs.

Back to how I write! Right at this moment I have eleven other posts started and in various stages of being written. Whenever I think of a blog idea, I open a new post put the title on it and the standard ending from Sew Happy on down.

Many times I write the opening paragraph so I don't lose my thoughts. Other times I will write random thoughts or words which include what I want to say.

The easiest kind of post for me to write is a tutorial. Let's say I made a glasses case. (I can hear my husband speaking the words, I made a glasses case.) As I make it I take pictures.a snack

I load the pics on my computer and edit them in PicMonkey, even if I am only reducing them in pixels. I have one folder on the computer for the original pics and one for the edited pics. I then load the edited pics into the media manager.

After that I often need a snack. Or I find laundry that needs to be moved around. Then there's dinner which sends me back to my computer.

Finally I start writing and the pictures will be my guide as to what steps to include. If there are lots of pictures I put them in a photo gallery. When I get all done, I save and hit preview.

That is the moment when I sometimes insult myself. (This is lousy Kathy! Who will want to read it?) That first draft is sometimes nonsensical, missing words and steps. I redo it and play around with where the pictures go. (OK, Mathews, that'll do.)

By the last time I save it I have revised it at least ten times. Then sometimes I let it marinate a bit or I schedule it to publish the next day. That is the next time that I call myself names because I don't think I have published much that I don't revise once it goes live. (Quick, quick go back and edit you crazed quilter, you!)

But I don't finish sewing something every day. Some things that I sew take weeks to finish. I have folders of original pictures for two or three posts hanging around for weeks. I add photos as I go.

a dinnerFor the non tutorial posts some of the motivation is very concrete. For example when I attend a quilt show, try a new product or feature a quilter or book. Those are pretty straightforward.

Other times I will see a video or read something and it will hit me, I could get a blog out of this. I have been doing quite a bit of this lately as my quilts are taking way too long to complete. Or I might just think of something silly after seeing a commercial or a title on the news.

Every once in a while I will really struggle to get my thoughts down, to have something that I think is worth publishing. To calm myself down I will say to myself, oh what the heck, no one reads this blog anyway.  It's not true, it just lets me calm down.

The final part of the writing process is after I hit publish. Then I get comments from people which might motivate a follow up blog or make me rethink something I just wrote. That's my favorite part because as much as I like writing and sewing, I simply adore people more and interacting with them.

The comments make me Sew happy!

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