A Peek Into My Writing Process

I’ve been asked to take part in a writing process blog tour, and so that’s what you’re in the midst of right now. Welcome to the tour! It’s a pretty simple concept: Each participating blogger just answers four questions about his or her writing process (blog and otherwise, if applicable), and then passes the tour baton off to another blogger to continue the journey.

My wonderful friend Gwynne invited me to take part in this blog tour, and you should definitely check out her yummy blog, The Crafty Cook Nook, for some inspiring recipes and all-around great writing. G and I became forever friends when we were roommates for eight sweaty months while teaching English in rural Malaysia. Gwynne is a remarkably talented writer (she’s not just a blogger — she’s working on a novel!), and I’ve always been such an admirer of her ability to carve out time specifically for writing. I’d like to add some similar discipline to my approach!

So with that, here’s a glimpse into how I approach writing:

1. What are you working on?

I have a blog about, well, lots of things. And that’s kind of the point. I’d thought about starting a blog years before I actually pulled the trigger, but had been wrestling with what theme I’d adopt. Best blog practices state, after all, that in general blogs should have a “thing” — something like gluten-free cooking or DIY crafts or fashion. Unfortunately (fortunately?) my interests are far too broad for me to feel okay about tying myself to a single topic. The result? I write about everything from baking to advertising (the industry I work in) to fashion to traveling. I’m also trained in journalism and, even though I don’t currently work in that field, I try to keep my journalism muscles in shape by freelancing a bit (roughly 4-6 articles per month).

2. How does your work differ from others of its genre?

I try to bring a good mix of whimsy and reality to my writing, as I feel like that’s who I am. I’m Type A but also creative (which can be really annoying sometimes) and the things I’m interested in span a weird spectrum. I guess I try to make my blog sound as much like me as possible. Writing for my blog makes it easier to convey who I am than my journalistic endeavors, and I’ve enjoyed the outlet far more than I thought I would.

3. Why do you write what you do?

I’ve loved making the transition from journalism to advertising, but I realized I was missing writing as regularly as I’d been doing. Starting a blog, for me, felt pretty natural, as I’ve been writing my whole life. And the things I write about, by and large, are the things I think about. The things I’d discuss with a friend. A way to document memorable parts of my life. I try to write about things I’d also be interested to read. I’ve also learned to be okay with the organic evolution of my blog. I’d love for it to be more widely read, but also don’t want to kill myself to stick to a schedule, worry if my photos aren’t professional quality, etc. I already have a lot going on in my life, and I want my blog to continue to be a happy outlet rather than a burden.

4. How does your writing process work?

Though I don’t post on a regular schedule (I should, I know!), I do always have a handful of post ideas or even partially written posts saved as drafts. One big benefit to the themelessness I’ve created is that virtually anything goes. At any given point, I’ll have a list of ideas ranging from cocktail recipes I’ve just tried to my new favorite nail polish colors to an overview of a party we just hosted. It’s been fun to have a blog as a way to document and channel some of my thinking. If I read an interesting article or something, I’ve noticed that I’ve started to think about ways to build on that idea in order to create a blog post. I end up learning more about the things I’m interested in than I likely would otherwise and forcing myself to organize my thoughts as I’m researching and crafting my posts.

Step one complete — now it’s time to introduce my friend Bethany, witty author of My Fake Food Blog, who will be taking it from here to talk about HER writing process. (She’ll be publishing a post in the next few days.) Bethany and I met when we worked together at Mullen Advertising and we both live in Winston-Salem and hang out as much as possible. Photographic proof that we’re the best of friends:

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If you’re not a My Fake Food Blog reader yet, I know you’ll enjoy Bethany’s writing as much as I do. (And I can vouch for her cooking skills. SOLID.)

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