Year of Learning

If you have followed this blog for any length of time, then you have read of my struggles to be steady and consistent in my writing habits. I can recall nearly a dozen attempts at a weekly features or ongoing series – all ideas geared toward forming a steady rhythm of posts.

The desire to write is seldom the issue. I would enjoy spending hours each day on the task. In addition, the quest for ideas to develop into posts is rarely the struggle. Every day involves a number of thoughts that might prove worthy of further development.

With those two things expressed, I suppose the writing struggle lives in the space between idea and action. Forming thoughts into words involves mental grunt work, even if you love that particular type of grunting. There is the risk that a thought you believed had value turns into a post that isn’t actually worth much at all. There’s a possibility that something important to you elicits no response from readers, silently confirming that you are further out to lunch than you feared.

But writers write all the same.

How to proceed?

LearningAs I considered what the new year might hold for me, I determined that beyond particular resolutions or specific habits, I desire 2015 to be a year of learning. I’m not speaking of a learning that might feel burdensome, accompanied by heavy expectations and heady efforts. Rather I envision a year in which I increasingly open my ears to learn from all the wisdom-sources that surround me: Books, people, stories, experiences, children, music, films, and more. Even simpler, it’s amazing what can be discovered in a stripped-down moment of tuning in to one’s own body or thoughts or emotions.

Forecasting a year of learning, I dare to dream that a few items worth sharing might arise. I would also venture to guess that those gems will be scattered among posts as mundane as a link to a video or song or site that is proven meaningful to me. Whatever the case, perhaps a simple pattern of posting things learned – from the biggest to smallest – along my wandering-and-wondering ways might provide me with a year-long framework on which to hang my blogging habits for the next calendar year.

Without further ado, I proclaim 2015 the “Year of Learning” here at Wandering & Wondering.

End of Year

It’s stunning that this is my first post of the month, but hardly surprising on the other hand. The past six weeks or so have been a blur. Days have been full, nights have been short, and plates have been full. A number of items fell off the edges, and blogging was unfortunately, but unapologetically one of them.

Among the things receiving my attention, that might be worth your attention:

Christmas Wish List: Our church’s annual project was another significant success, raising awareness within our city of those living in poverty and blessing them in practical ways at Christmas time. Volunteers and media and givers — all were wonderful parts of the process!

Advent Blog: Our church’s annual blog efforts rolled into their fifth year this holiday season. Huge thanks to every writer and to all who tuned in to read along. I submitted a few posts there as well just to prove that my writing hadn’t completely dried up.

Beyond those, the month involved first music recitals for our girls, school concerts, Advent assemblies, Christmas Eve service, church hockey, men’s mentoring group, MOPS, along with all the usual Christmas preparations, an unusually full load in conjunction with our approved home residents, a couple rounds of various sicknesses, and a broken finger that continues to mend.

Desire to write? It’s still there.

Will to write? I’m rediscovering it.

May the next year be your best yet, friends! I’ll meet you here as faithfully as I can muster. πŸ™‚

Battle of Blogging

battleI am getting clobbered.

I love to blog–I really do. I find significant satisfaction in stringing words together with enough attentive precision to accurately voice my unseen thoughts and emotions.

Yet I am doing that… almost never!

Some of this is external:

  • Schedules are tight.
  • Rhythms are scattered.
  • Commitments are compromised.

Some of this is internal:

  • Motivation is lacking.
  • Weariness is present.
  • Passion is waning.

Some of this is about writing:

  • Perhaps I have a block.
  • Perhaps I wish I had a block.
  • Perhaps I am unsure why this is worth the effort.
  • Perhaps I am discouraged by the realization that a guy who cannot consistently post 500 words is wildly dreaming if he ever wishes to publish a book of 50,000.

Some of this has nothing to do with writing:

  • Time in Scripture is a hard push right now.
  • Desire to pray is weaker than I wish.
  • I am doing too much and being too little.

Sometimes one battle is waged on a dozen fronts. Sometimes I look like Braveheart. Sometimes I forget my sword at home. Sometimes I swing a pool noodle.

For today, I will derive my ounce of satisfaction from seeing that something got posted on October 28, 2014. It was scattered and sorry, but at its least, it was a marker on the wandering-and-wondering path!

Zemanta Related Posts ThumbnailYOUR TURN:

  • If you have enjoyed (or are enjoying) a high time within your creative endeavors, please drop a comment below.
  • Share with the rest of us lessons learned on the battleground!

Still Here

still-here Contrary to what my infrequent posts would suggest, I am still here. Life overall has felt somewhat helter-skelter, and a number of activities (such as blogging) are struggling to get much attention. Throw in guitar and exercise and reading, and I’m starting to wonder what I actually am doing with all my free time!

Back on the topic of blogging, my friend Blair recently described some of his battle the process. While not exactly the same, I affirm the battle of any creative process.

I love to write. I want to write. But the act of stringing words together in meaningful ways is taxing, and my account balance seems low at present. Metaphors aside, I just don’t have much to say lately.

Actually, that is a lie.

I do have a fair bit to say, but the level of energy demanded to meaningfully move unformed thoughts into polished prose has been beyond me lately more often than not. This isn’t even a statement of struggle or seeking for sympathy. Life is filled with good things, and I am quite grateful. This is simply a declaration that writing is hard. I’m no Ann Voskamp. Seth Godin does not live here. Max Lucado is at another address

Call me lazy. Say I’m tired. Conclude that I have lost motivation. Some of these may be true. But I am still here.

And for today, I’m content to leave it at that.

Back at It

Some time ago, I entered a block of vacation time. In my eagerness to “take off”, I neglected to let you know! πŸ˜‰

I will touch on some of the details of holidays in tomorrow’s Thursday Thanks. For the moment, just allow me to state…

I-am-Back

One Thousand Posts

1000_by_aveqiu1On July 30, 2006, one month after re-settling in Canada, I posted my first entry on a new blog that I had chosen to title, “Wandering & Wondering”. Nearly 106 months later, I am still here. This post will be #1001. Apparently 8 years is a millennium in blog-years!

Over that span, the diversity of content has definitely taken full advantage of the tagline at the top of this page: “a disorderly pile of who-knows-what”. A few posts have been profound, most have likely not. Some posts have ended up as I envisioned them, many not quite. A handful of posts have generated significant discussion; most have faded into cyber-oblivion with no response at all. Regardless, the experience of posting something — anything! — every third day has been a pleasure, one that I don’t intend to give up anytime soon.

1000-gamersThose who have joined me along the way, you are warmly welcomed. I’m so glad you’re here! For those who have wandered and wondered all the way along, I have no ability to reward you sufficiently for such outrageous companionship. You are clearly special people – certainly special, as in “wonderful”; likely also special, as in “needing more hobbies” as well. πŸ˜‰

For tonight, it’s time to hit “publish” on this post. Now begins the quest to make the second thousand posts better than the first.

Grace and peace, my friends!

1000-large

Time to Move It!

Typed-WriterOver a year ago, I made a public declaration on this blog.

On the heels of that move, I wanted to write more.

Some time later, I altered sleep habits to create more time for it. And the production of blog posts went up.

Now it’s time for another change.

What I really want to write is a book.

What I really want write is several.

And what I really cannot handle is pumping minutes and keystrokes into blogging AND books. Something has to shift.

So, here is my compromise.

I will continue to blog with the goal of sharing three times weekly:

1) A video or quote discovered along the way.

2) The Six-Pack each weekend for further resource sharing.

3) One original post per week, likely related to or taken from what has come out of my writing time each week. Sometimes these will simply be shared; other times, I will solicit feedback and response from your sharp eyes and minds.

I’ve made baby steps toward being more faithful to my declaration. Time to kick it up another notch!