by • April 21, 2011 • Life As I Know It, Professional DevelopmentComments (3)2344

Bloggers’ Think Tank

A couple of days ago I tweeted this:

I need a blogging partner/group to hold me accountable so I actually write when I say I'm going to. Who's in? Looking at you @
Lisa Endersby

My original intent was to find a person (or group of people) willing and able to help me stay on track with my own writing goals. I was becoming increasingly frustrated with myself for not putting fingers to keys and writing out a blog post that had been renting considerable space in my head for some time. As is often the case within our Twitter community, I was excited and a bit overwhelmed to see the quick and numerous responses to my tweet. In particular, this one caught my eye:

And this one too:

@ Hey - if it's not there, don't force the writing. I say blog when you feel it. It's quality, not quantity.
Laura Pasquini

First off, a big thank you to Eric and Laura for engaging me in discussion and challenging me to think through what it really was I wanted out of that tweet. Behind the frustration and general grumpiness that tweet may have showed, I discovered within our #sachat community that there were others like me. Friends who needed inspiration, encouragement and yes, motivation, to start or continue blogging to share thoughts and ideas with the wider group.

While  I am definitely in the ‘blogging because I want to’ camp, there can be a large gap between ‘wanting to’ and actually doing it. I even wrote a blog post about it. (Anyone else see the weird irony there?) My biggest blogging barrier (alliteration copyright pending) is trying to work out ideas that make sense in my head before writing them out. Being a strong E on the Introvert/Extrovert scale, my internal motivation is often sparked by external discussions and interactions. I experienced this awesome process originally through tweets with the amazing Bryce Hughes, who got me thinking about mentorship beyond 140 characters of inspiration. As we started commenting on each other’s postings, we found an almost organic process was developing. For every blog ‘conversation’ we had, I found not only more topics to explore, but those topics also found a space to be refined through Bryce’s suggestions and questions. Since I found this process so rewarding, I would love to share it with anyone else looking for some support as they continue on this blogging journey.

Instead of being motivated by the quantity of blogs I expect to publish, I’m looking for people who also enjoy working through ideas with someone else as a sounding board. I certainly don’t expect this will work for everyone, but I know it works for me and I’d love to find some like-minded friends to connect with. While I know not everyone will want to work this way, I’ve seen great things come from these conversations and idea exchanges. While motivation for blogging is best when it comes from within, that inner spark of inspiration can come from external sources, and that’s what I’m hoping this think tank will do. Please feel free to pass along this idea to other friends working through some blogging ideas. I’d also love to hear more from others who may not like or feel comfortable with this idea. What’s your creative process like? How do you work through your ideas? Just as we know there is no one size fits all learning and creative process for our students, I am open to exploring this and other ideas for helping us all write awesome, inspiring blogs.

Want to check out the group’s Google doc? Tweet me! Want to offer feedback, suggestions and ideas? Tweet me or comment below. This isn’t a perfect process, but I think it’s a good place to start.


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3 Responses to Bloggers’ Think Tank

  1. Hey Lisa-
    Love this post. I completely agree. There are times when I wish I could just pop out blog after blog! Then there are days when I’m sitting there thinking to myself “honestly Brian, you have nothing to say today” — That concept that Laura mentioned about not pushing it is the way that I go – completely!

    Then there are those days when the post ideas just come streaming out!

    Another blogger I know (@nestrada) puts post-it notes on the back of his door w/ blog ideas – whenever they hit him. This helps him to move then around in order of importance (what he wants to post when) – but also allows him to clump things together (sometimes the same post has two ideas)…etc
    I think it is a great visual tool that he uses.

  2. I used to have a writers group for English, a study group for History and now I have a research group for my doc program — so I fully support your blogging group efforts. I like where you are going with this.

    Thanks for the mention – to be honest, I like to have a good chat about things. That’s just what I do. Feel free to drop me a line if you need some blogivation (motivation + blogging?) anytime. 🙂

  3. Eric Stoller says:

    2 thoughts: I bookmark a ton of sites using Delicious with the tag: “blog-post-eric-stoller.” About 90% of those bookmarks never make it to my blog, but they do generate a lot of ideas.

    Also, I think it’s okay to put out concepts and ideas that aren’t fully formed as blog posts. Folks comment, ideas form, merge, and evolve. It’s your party, thanks for inviting us in 🙂

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