Do you know what I love about writing and blogging? I mean, other than the fact that sometimes magazine companies send me random subscriptions after I tell them that it’s a violation of WordPress.com’s TOS for me to review products for monetary compensation? That’s pretty great because reading paper magazines makes me feel so 1999 and we all know that nostalgia is my homegirl. I like the magazines, but today we’re going to focus on something else that is pretty awesome about writing: the more you do it, the better you get at it.
You could say that for mostly anything, I suppose, but I have found it to be more true in my writerly exploits than in, say, my quest to make the perfect loaf of bread. While I love fresh bread and nearly collapse in sheer glee when it comes accompanied by butter*, it’s easier for me to just go out and buy a loaf than it is for me to sacrifice 48 hours to making my own. In the handful of instances in which I’ve tried to make my own baguettes, the bread usually turns out so pathetic that even the ducks at a local pond wouldn’t have anything to do with it. No harm, no foul. Please someone tell me that got that duck-foul joke. No one? Bueller?
*I started typing “freshly churned” butter but set me up with some Country Crock and I’m good too. Class.
Writing is different. Unlike bread, I have to make my own, and I’m constantly tinkering with it to see what I could be doing better. I’m not going to wake up one morning and be John Steinbeck – hell, I won’t wake up one morning and be the literary equivalent of AC Slater – but I’m still going to look at the little things I’m doing in my writing projects and analyze them, making changes along the way.
That constant reexamination is another way baking bread is worlds away from writing. Once you learn to make the perfect loaf that has the exact density, flavor, and chewiness that you desire, you commit that recipe to memory. I’ve heard of family restaurants that haven’t changed their recipes in over a hundred years because why would they want to change something that so clearly works? Writing is a lot more fluid, and if I’m moving forward as I hope I am, I have to recalibrate even the small things so that the pieces I produce are worth my time and yours. I’m sifting around in my kitchen for that perfect recipe, and when I find it, you’ll know. I suspect it has a great deal of cheese it in, but I could be wrong. I have had to-die-for Brussels sprouts before. Shut up. I’m not lying.
This overly generous (you’re welcome) explanation is a lead-up to some announcements Kelly and I want to make about Remember the Time, the nostalgic linkup that we host weekly on our blogs. Many people have negative views of bloghops and linkups because they have a reputation for being insincere self-promotional dumping grounds of links, but is our desire to continue molding RTT into a place where you can share your memories and have a group of readers genuinely listen and provide feedback. RTT is a part of our own writing routines, so we want to make it better. Whether you link up with us because you’re a nostalgia junkie, you want to hammer down your fleeting memories, or because you want to improve your own writing and storytelling abilities, we want to make RTT better for you. (And us. Did I mention us? Kelly and I are kinda in love with ourselves.)
Remember the Time is now going to be a monthly rather than weekly event. Sometimes you need more than a week to come up with a post you want to put your name on, and we honor that. Our time (and yours) is at a premium these days and we don’t want you to feel a needless crunch to write something that your heart isn’t in. We will announce the prompt on our blogs the third Thursday of each month, and the Inlinkz linkup tool will be at the bottom of the post, just like usual.
Another benefit of making RTT a monthly event is that the push to read all the posts of your fellow participants will be reduced since the event will occur for a longer period. We’ve always encouraged audience participation when it comes to these events, but we just want to reiterate how much you will get out of RTT if you leave comments on your fellow RTTer’s posts. No one wants to be blogging in a bubble. Pay it forward, yo.
We hope these changes will suit RTT better, and we appreciate everyone who has EVER participated. You make it worth doing.
For February’s prompt, we are going to be piggybacking on a brilliant topic raised by Rara for The Daily Post: taking a walk in another person’s shoes. We thought this prompt lent itself really well to RTT, as so many of our memories have resonance because we experienced their events with others. You certainly don’t have to interview the person whose perspective you will be profiling in your post, though ;D
As always, grab the badge and stick it at the bottom of your post when you put it up.
Add your link below and come back to see all the other great posts your blogging pals have written! Comment on them and tweet and share your favorites using the hashtag #RTTbloghop. The link-up closes at 11:55PM EST Wednesday, February 19th, so get your link in before then.