Thursday, April 26, 2018

Breathing New Life And Blogging A New Book


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Still round the corner there may wait,
A new road or a secret gate.
~ J. R. R. Tolkien

My blogging has almost come to a standstill, as you well know. From posting every day in the beginning, to several times a week, to once a month, it has the look of a writer gasping her last breaths.

At first, I thought posting less often was a result of working offline on other writing projects, and that I didn't have energy or inspiration for both. Yes, that was true, but I also realized I was running out of fresh new things about which to write. It was not that I stopped seeing those 'glimpses of heaven' in my world around me. But, I did start asking myself, how many flower photos can I show you, how many times shall I tell you that I'm enjoying the view from my study window as I watch the birds at the feeders, the squirrel chasing down the back fence, and the neighbourhood bunny having another nibble from my rosebushes? What if my posts were getting a bit stale?

Since those early blogging days my life has changed. I'm not involved in the many outside activities I used to be. For the most part, my daily life is simple and quiet, pleasant and enjoyable for someone who loves her solitude and quiet space. But when it comes to blogging about what's going on, well, there's just not a lot new to chat about. I don't have kids or grandkids to talk about. I don't go to Oxford every year for my birthday (see previous post). I even read less these days, slowing my pace down so I can savour and ponder more. Which means less books to talk about too.

* * *

Originally I started blogging to establish the habit of writing more regularly. I wanted to share 'the breathings of my heart' further afield. From the very beginning, I loved the whole process: designing it, learning how to create posts, and finally, by pressing publish, bravely sending my words out into the world.

From the start, blogging gave me a small audience. Even a dozen readers was more than I had before. I wasn't looking for hundreds, certainly not thousands, to read the blog; in fact, I felt a little nervous about that kind of exposure. But I knew I wanted to connect with kindred spirits, those individuals who shared similar interests and then wrote about it on their own blogs. I appreciated the immediacy of connection in Blogland. I certainly loved the beautiful feedback and affirmation that began to show up in my comment boxes. The truth of it, that's what I looked forward to the most after hitting the publish button -- finding a comment from someone who resonated with something I wrote. That's what moved me, continues to move me.

The truth is, I don't want to park my blog like an old used car. It's still my favourite way to write and connect with kindred readers. And what I've been finding out recently, this blog continues to have value and meaning for many of you. You've told me so, some even saying, you wished I would write more often, as you'd love to read more. Trust me, those comments are like music to my ears.

* * *

So, I thought about what to do. I waited, listened, prayed. All the while thinking about how I still wanted to write about living a beautiful life, but that I needed a new focus, a new direction for the blog.

And, finally it came to me. There's a story I've been wanting to write out for a long time now. And, I found out, too, that I really like writing blog posts much better than trying to write a manuscript for a book. So I'm going to post what I've been trying to write in a book. It's the story of how I found my beautiful life. How, when I found myself 30 years old and still single, I had to set aside the long cherished dream of being a wife and mother by age 22 or 23, and by 25, at the very latest. It was the life-changing inward journey of discovery. When I look back at it all, I marvel at how God directed my steps and brought me into a place of wholeness, beauty, and joy.
“It has always been on the written page that the world has come into focus for me. If I can piece all these bits of memory together with the diaries and letters and the scribbled thoughts that clutter my mind and bookshelves, then maybe I can explain what happened. ... Maybe I can tell my story in a way that is useful to someone else.” ~ Nancy Horan, Loving Frank
Some people I know have blogged their story and then later turned it into a book. Depending on how it all turns out, perhaps that's what I will do down the road, but for now, I just need to write it down. And, to share it with you, my friends.

I'm not sure how often I'll post about it. I'd love once a week, but it takes me ages to sort out what I need to say, so I'll aim for once a month for right now. Plus, I will continue to post the occasional 'letter from home' or a Friday Five collection to fill you in on what's happening in the garden, what the birds are doing, not to mention the silly squirrel, and all the other good stuff called life.
"When a book (post) leaves your hand, it belongs to God. He may use it to save a few souls or to try a few others, but I think that for the writer to worry is to take over God's business."  ~Flannery O'Connor
So often we like to signal a new season in our lives with a marker of some kind. Like getting a new hairdo or writing a new poem, or reading a new-to-us author. It's a signal to the world that something has changed in us -- something old has passed away, something new is about to spring forth. In that vein, you might find some little changes to the blog when you next visit.

On that note, I'm wishing you glimpses of heaven in unexpected places.

With love and hugs,
Brenda
 



31 comments:

  1. Oh, Brenda! I am so happy you are not going to "park your blog." I would miss you terribly, as I love each and every world you write. It would be dreadful not to read your beautiful words.

    I found a bit of myself in your post today, as I, too, have thought as I sit today and write another post about flowers. But, you see, maybe some may tire of such writings - others may not. And, my specific point is: Doesn't our world need to hear about beautiful flowers and read beautiful words. Maybe, I am partial but I certainly believe it does. And, you write beautifully about both and so much more.

    Thank you for a lovely post - you are an inspiration to me Bren and I am sure to many others. Have a beautiful day!

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    1. Sandra, I was just thinking about what you were saying about flowers. I had been thinking not so much about flowers generally, just my little garden and flowers, specifically, and wondering how many times I post pics about them. I totally agree that our world needs to hear about beautiful flowers and read beautiful words. I was just thinking that I needed to find a new focus and ways in which to present these messages here. // Sandra, I'm always grateful for your kind affirming words about what I share here. Thank you!! xox

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  2. Brenda, although I have been in and out of blog land (mostly out) for the past five or so years, I have always enjoyed my visits to your beautiful site. My days are always beautified by being here. Your grace-filled words and lovely photos are a balm to the soul. Don't ever think people are bored by reading about a content, peaceful life!!

    I am currently blogging again, at Ninety-Twelve Psalms Avenue (inspired by---you guessed it---Psalms 90:12, where we are admonished to consider the brevity of life). Before that I was Joy in the Middle, and before that (which is probably what you will remember) Fill My Cup with Beauty.

    I look forward to following along with you on your new direction.

    Love,
    Patti

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    1. Patti, How lovely to hear from you! It's been a while but I certainly remember your past blog. Your new one sounds most interesting -- I shall be popping over for a visit soon.

      Wishing you a beautiful day...
      Brenda xo

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  3. I so enjoy reading about your beautiful life, Brenda....

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  4. You certainly speak for many of us in your wondering how often you can share about the same birds, squirrels, flowers... To me, it’s like a visit with a dear friend at her kitchen table where she shares a pot of tea and perhaps a scone. Visiting this way is like coming home. It doesn’t get old. I will happily read what you write. 🌿

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    1. Vee, I like your imagery of our visits in blogland being like visits around the kitchen table with a dear friend. It's so like coming home, I agree.

      Wishing you a beautiful day...
      Brenda xox

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  5. thx for your comment on my blog today via facebook linking...i used to blog daily now it's weekly or bi-weekly BUT I have organized/written 5 books out of my blogging and written/shared 6 years of a weekly column I used to write free for a local paper called Looking Back. My books are for sale on my blog but I've sold very few, so gave up on that. made two of them e-books and sell a few every month and make avout $90 a year from kindle. Not famous but have settled on poetry but if i blog a poem can't use it for competition so I don't share many that way. Love all the friends i hsve made in the last almost 11 years, excited today because i can type with my non swolled index left finger and my right hand is okay...but I'm left handed. Great to have a hubby around. Keep sharing and writing it's life giving. hugs-Lin

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    1. Lin, you've always challenged me as I watched all the work you published through the years. I think you and Caryn were some of my earliest bloggers who left comments. I just love how our paths cross here in blogland. // Wishing you continue recovery to those injured fingers and body! Bren xox

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  6. I look forward to reading what you are writing too. I love to blog....just making that connection with my blog buddies. I take a lot of photos so I have plenty of things to post but I don't always write much. That might change...it's nice to mix it up! Sweet hugs!

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    1. Mixing things up a bit -- that is one way to keep this fresh and new. Good Tip! xo

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  7. Oh Brenda, how I know the feeling of having so little new to write about. That is partly due to a somewhat static lifestyle, looking after my dear husband. But I do love reading your posts and I wouldnt mind if they were about the squirrel over and over!

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    1. And how I enjoy your posts, Elizabethd! Even though your life is somewhat static, your blog is a lovely example of how to keep things new. We love peeks into your garden as the seasons pass. Perhaps because every day is new with fresh beauty and mercy, your (our) posts portray that daily newness of life.

      Brenda xox

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  8. I am looking forward to reading what it is you will be sharing. A blog is such a personal thing.Some are filled with photos, some are filled with crafts and so on, but each one carries a little of the writers heart.

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    1. It's true, Ruth, every blog carries a little of the writer's heart. Thanks so much for stopping in.

      Bren xo

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  9. Your plan sounds perfect!
    Seasons of life come and go.
    The yearning for expression AND connection continue though, I believe...
    (At east that's how it has been for me.)
    I've been thinking of combining several of the blogs I have.
    Just not a priority right now,
    so some languish while others receive a bit more attention.

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  10. I will look forward to this. God bless you, Brenda, and may He continue to give you joy in writing!

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  11. Spring is the perfect season to try new things, and move in new directions--a season of renewal and refreshment; may it be so for you. We look forward to the "breathings of your heart"!

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  12. I'm so glad you won't be parking your blog, Brenda. I love reading your words because they come from your heart. I, too, have wondered if I should stop, or change direction. I feel like I've lost my voice recently, and don't know how to find it. Part of it is being busy with other things. I treasure the friendships and connections I've made through blogging and don't want to lose them.

    I look forward to reading about your life and how God led you to find those glimpses of heaven that you share with us.

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  13. I think you have hit on a lovely plan to bring new life into your blog! I look forward to reading the thoughts you will share here!

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  14. How exciting. I am very much looking forward to reading more.

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  15. I appreciate you more and more!
    You have a gift and we have always enjoyed it. Now we get to know you more with, your story. Excited!

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  16. Dearest Brenda I am so glad you are going to continue blogging. I always enjoy reading about your beautiful world. Friend your writing is never stale. As always I will be looking forward to hearing your story and still catching glimpses of your life - it may at times seem ordinary to you but to me it is extraordinary. Thank you for all your wonderful writing. Take care and have a lovely day. Hugs!

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  17. I look forward to your story! I just know it’s going to be full of life and truth!

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  18. As so many others have already stated, I will be looking forward to sharing your story. I am just glad that you are continuing to blog. So many are leaving Blogland...so good to hear you’re not!

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  19. What a beautiful space you have here. I stumbled upon it from a link on Inscribe and have enjoyed my visit. Just wanted to say hello. I’ll be back!

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  20. I will look forward to your memoir, dear Brenda, and so very glad you have decided to keep blogging! x Karen

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  21. I'm so glad you are not abandoning your blog, Brenda, so many have recently and yours is a voice that I would particularly miss. I love your writing. I'll look forward to the memoirs but I always enjoy hearing about the view from your window just as much.
    Amalia
    xo

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  22. "How, when I found myself 30 years old and still single, I had to lay aside the long cherished dream of being a wife and mother, as it looked like it wasn't going to happen."

    I hope you don't mind I am giggling at this. 30 is so young, but when you are just reaching it, it seems like a million years. :) I got married at age 33. It seemed really old at the time!

    I can't wait to hear your story!

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  23. you are beautiful writer and i truly loved the name of blog!!!

    i am glad that you are enjoying your solitude and peace my friend and this is what matter most as whatever we do in life is just to approach this right?

    keep sharing your precious heart
    God bless you!

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To My Beautiful Readers,

Some people come into our lives, leave footprints on our hearts, and we are never the same. ~ Franz Peter Schubert

Thank you so much for leaving your 'footprint' here in my comment box. I do appreciate you taking a moment to share your thoughts today.

Brenda xox

PS. I do not always comment here, but I do look forward to coming and visiting you....