We hear a lot about the writing process, how it’s different for everybody and how it is a process, rather than a magical one-off or a product. I teach a lot of this in my English 1010 courses, and I’ve also enjoyed reading about it in essays for that course and in literature. One of my favorite writing process descriptions from literature is in The Woman in White (1859), which itself is a compilation of different narratives and forms of writing that result in a complete story. One main character, Count Fosco, writes his own confession in a torrent, throwing paper about with noisy delight. He says, “Habits of literary composition are perfectly familiar to me. One of the rarest of all the intellectual accomplishments that a man can possess is the grand faculty of arranging his ideas. Immense privilege! I possess it. Do you?” (583). Fosco recognizes the importance of writing and uses it as a way of competing intellectually. Collins goes on to describe Fosco’s writing process in great detail.
Blogging is writing, and I’ve noticed that I have developed a process for doing so over the last few years. My blogging process has developed into a particular pattern. I read. When I finish reading, if I have something to say about the book, I pull out my Ipad, wherever I might be, and type up those initial thoughts in an email to myself. This can be frustrating, as I use the virtual keyboard on the Ipad screen, but it helps me get my thoughts down and in a safe place. I’ve typed up my reviews while sitting on my couch, while cooking dinner, in my university’s library, on my bed, at my campus desk, and in class (no, not really!).
After I email it to myself, I just leave it there for a while, in my inbox. When I’m at my desktop computer in my office at home and I have extra time, I then pull up that email and paste it into a Word document. Sometimes I work on it, fixing spelling and typing errors and adding more detail. Other times, I just leave it messy, save it, and walk away. Then, when I’m ready to post it, I’ll polish it up.
I also take my pictures that way. I know: my photos aren’t anything to brag about. I’m not a photographer. But I photograph the book covers next to my sliding glass back door on a piece of an IKEA bookshelf that we left out (purposefully) when putting together some shelves. The northern light from that window in midday and afternoon is nice. I take the photo with my Ipad, email it to myself, and again save it to my desktop when I’m there and have time to go through my emails.
I used to then post in the mornings, after I would wake up, shower, and feed the kids. Lately, I’ve spent some time in the evenings polishing the posts and scheduling them in WordPress. It is nice to schedule them to appear the next morning, and then I don’t have to worry about rushing through posting so I can attend to our morning routine or so I can blow dry my hair before it dries all the way and goes completely flat. Now, I schedule the posts and they appear before I’m even out of bed.
But this has proved to be a problem, a strange one at that. I started scheduling them to go live at 6 a.m., and that first morning, guess who woke up at 6 a.m. on the dot with a start? Yes, me! I’m psychically connected to my blog posts! Ha ha. And although I’m being silly when I say that, I’ve seriously woken up many times because of this. I’m definitely high-strung and have anxiety. So I changed the posts to go live around 6:30 or maybe even 7 a.m. I do like to rise early, but not that early!
However, now I’m used to it and I don’t wake up anymore. Maybe that’s because I’ve started blogging less since this semester has been so hard. Now I can set it to go live at 5 a.m. and I don’t even stir.
What is your blogging process? Do you have a routine?