Today is my blogoversary.
How the time has flown. Just four years ago I clicked “Publish” for the very first time on what was then The Heart and Craft of Lifestory Writing. Lots of words have gone into the 380 posts that passed through cyberspace in the intervening1461 days, and I can’t begin to count all the topics. If I printed all the content on trade-sized book pages, they would fill about four volumes, which goes to show that writing a little bit, maybe 1200 words a week, will fill a book in a year or so. So keep on writing, one story at a time.
About two years ago I changed the name, removing “story” from the title to emphasize that there is much more to writing about life than writing simple stories. Last July I expanded on this idea with a post about The Life Writing Progression, arranging five forms of life writing on a continuum of complexity, from uncensored rants and journal entries to polished memoir. Each has value for specific purposes.
Other posts have covered truth, purpose, writing practice, editing, description, dialogue, dealing with your inner censor, working with your muse, elements of a good story, and much, much more. Take a little time and peruse the archives.
Much of the content in this blog has come from discoveries I’ve made and insights I've had about various aspects of life writing. Books about writing in general and memoir, journaling and other aspects of life writing in particular fill nearly three feet of shelf space on my wall. Only a couple are still unread. The proverb, “If you want to really learn a subject, teach it to someone else,” has always resonated with me. This blog is one way I put that proverb into action.
In recent months I’ve spun off two subsidiary blogs in order to keep the focus of this one purely on life writing. One, Ritergal’s Tek Tips, is about the technical aspects of managing manuscripts and the writing process in general on your computer. The most recent, A Los Alamos Girlhood, is a real-time journal of my thoughts and experiences as I write a memoir by the same name.
This “Mother Blog” is a continuing celebration of my passion for all forms of life writing, and I feel honored that so many have stopped for a visit through the years. Although I write these posts because I’m fascinated with the topics, I do hope the traffic continues to grow. I hope that the growing interest in life writing as a vehicle for exploring the meaning of life, healing various wounds, and creating a legacy of family history for future generations will bless the whole world. I hope that we can, in words that I think originated with Christina Baldwin, “Restory the world, one life at a time.”
Shucks, at the ripe old age of four, this blog is almost old enough to have a memoir of its own.
Write now: draft a story of your history as a writer. Include anecdotes about challenging aspects of stories you have written, reactions of readers, insights you developed about writing, and insights you discovered about life. You may be surprised what else you discover when you write about your writing.