The previous post in this section: A Blogger...Not I (Blogging Part 1): focused on a few things to consider, when/if one decides to blog. Reflecting on that post, I think I need to take a few steps back and dig in a little more. I am going to take the very first idea in that last blog and expand on it.
I think this is THE most important piece of this process. I would like to add something to this step, one needs to not only think about the purpose for your writing, but also the audience. When you know both of these things, it is easier to have a focus and flow, when you write.
The audience I began blogging for, was an audience of one...ME. I had a lot of things that I needed to process and writing seemed to be a great place for me to work through them. I started writing, with no intention of it ever leaving my Drive...ever! I really don't know what actually caused me to publish my writing...no one would care what I had to say. And if it actually was read, I was being totally vulnerable...that could be bad. But for whatever reason...I created a blog site and I pushed "PUBLISH".
Strangest thing happened...I started receiving messages along the lines of "Me, too!" or "This speaks to me". WHAT?? Hmmm...So I continued...about a blog a week. I had to get this stuff out, at first, selfishly...for ME. As I worked past things, my blogs have changed, but I realized that in the end, they all had the same purpose. A purpose other then me airing my issues... The purpose had moved to the hope of reaching ONE person, helping ONE person. I realized that the things I was dealing with, were not isolated and people felt connected, which for many, is cathartic. So that became my purpose. To reach and help others. I don't know if that is what is happening, but that is the intent.
Now, as far as my new audience...I was shooting for educators, but not any specific type or group. I am writing from a place of "limbo" as my site title states: "Leading in Limbo". I sit perched upon a fence where I see two sides of the same world. So, I think my audience is "the every man/woman".
As I changed, my topics changed. But what will NEVER change is my transparency and authenticity. Those two things are extremely important to me. Now as stated in the previous post, I have found that I have since found some other purposes for writing, so I created these "spin offs". One is were I will put interviews of #EDUrockstars that I have worked with, and then there this one, where I will try to share more practical information.
Enough about me...What is YOUR purpose for writing a blog? I listed some possible ideas in the last post, but yours may not fit in there. Your purpose needs to come from within. Something that is tied to you, to your heart, your emotions, your mind. Once you find that...the blog topics and ideas will start flowing. At some point, consider your audience, just like we tell our students. You would write differently depending on your audience. Do you write from your brain or write from the heart...or both? Do you write a "how to" step by step or "a day in the life". Do you self reflect or pose questions? It all ties back to purpose and audience.
*If you are struggling with this step...move on to this one: Write...Write...Write. Let the words flow out of those fingertips, no filter. Give yourself time. Once you have quite a bit of writing...reread...looking at it through only these two connected lenses: WHAT IS MY PURPOSE? WHO IS MY AUDIENCE? Hopefully, the dots will line up. If not. Take a break. Take a breath. Try again in a week or so...but don't give up, if this is something that you are feeling compelled to do. There is a reason. Write on!!!
Here is where you will find practical tips, tricks and ideas. Hope you find some useful!