When I was really little (around 5 or 6 years old), I would write “books” on pieces of paper and give them to people. My mom actually has a pretty good collection of them. I also wrote lots of stories on our Apple II when I was really little. (Yes, I *am* that old.) I got into web design 17 years ago when I had to miss a ski trip as I was home with bronchitis and that cleared the way to start blogging 3 years later.
When Beth Anne asked if I wanted to be part of this blog hop on writing, I was happy to do it. Answering the questions also gave me something to do this past weekend while on a call interview with not much to do. 😉
1 – What am I writing or working on?
Currently, my writing is limited to my blog here at ::Meditatio::, a blog for Brett (the little boy I advocate for through Reece’s Rainbow), and whatever piece I try to whip out for NaNoWriMo in November. Right now, I’m trying to be intentional about posting decent cand unique content at ::Meditatio:: instead of just link-ups. For example, I will probably be posting something on how to do a control journal for your child with special needs this week as well as this and the three link-ups I usually join.
2 – How does my work differ from others of its genre?
To answer this, I’d have to define my genre and the closest approximation I can give is that it is a “personal blog”. I really hate trying to label what I do here because that would just pigeonhole it. For example, I don’t look at myself as a “Christian blogger”. Instead, I look at myself as a blogger who happens to be a devout Christian. I don’t view myself as a “mommy blogger”. I’m a blogger who happens to be a mom with a kid.
So… the way my work differs from those in my genre is that the interests are specific to me. I write about topics as diverse as autism, why the cranberry-colored ELCA hymnal is evil, the doings of my cats, pastor’s wife commentary, Scripture that interests me, the interplay between science and faith, why I am not going to homeschool my child from K-12, my irritation about various political things, and why the San Francisco Giants are infinitely better than the LA Dodgers. (Why yes, that last one *WAS* intentionally added to needle my husband Jon. How ever did you guess?)
Brett’s blog is pretty basic — just prayer requests and updates on his adoption if I have them.
My NaNo pieces involve a pastor’s wife as the main character because I write about what I know best. I haven’t read a lot of the work of other people who write murder mysteries for NaNoWriMo but I think their main character probably involves some kind of element of themselves.
3 – Why do I write what I write?
Short answer: it’s cheaper than therapy.
Long answer: I’m incredibly shy and introverted so I tend to function very much internally and I can get lost in my head. Getting some of the contents of my head out can help me work through something that is giving me a problem and sometimes the feedback I get can be helpful. I password the really difficult stuff and those with the password are people I trust not to spread it around and also people I trust to tell me the truth in love.
The joke about the pieces I write for NaNoWriMo is that I do it to kill off the people who are irritating me at the time. In all seriousness, it’s a creative itch that I don’t get to scratch all that often so I have some fun with it.
4 – How does my writing process work?
I like link-ups because they act as post seeds for me, whether it be telling what five things are my favorite this week, listing 7 short topics on my mind, or filling out a survey of sorts like one does for The Simple Woman’s Daybook. Otherwise, post seeds can be anything from comments on my blog to emails I get to things I see in the media upon which I think I should comment to stories that I think need to be told. Recently, I was getting some nasty comments (which were subjected to my Bloggess-inspired comment policy) left by a troll who refused to be banned so I flipped the nasty comments on their head and used them to talk about who I am as a pastor’s wife.
As far as NaNoWriMo goes, I have a static list of characters and places for the town in which I set my pieces. The characters are based on a mixture of people from previous parishes (good and bad) and occasionally characters who are seriously evil will be based solely on that person without being a composite of two irritating people. The saying, “truth is stranger than fiction” really is true and I’ve found that it is pretty hard to top some of the things people have done in churches where my husband Jon has served. If I know that there has been a big event in the life of a previous parish (anniversary celebration for the parish/wedding of VIP’s/death of prominent parishioner), I occasionally base a year’s piece around that.
Having said all that, here’s the really fun part: getting to introduce you to three people whose writing I love.
Amanda is simply an amazing woman. We met through one of the groups we’re part of online and the two of us have had some great conversations about Catholicism, me explaining aspects of Protestantism to her, and just everything in general. She has written a book called Worthy: See Yourself As God Does which is on my list of books to read and I also had the blessing and honor of watching her courtship with her husband whom she married on May 31st.
Amanda Sloan is a Belmont Abbey grad, theology nerd, and Director of Faith Formation at her home parish. She is a newlywed and mother-to-be, living in her home state of Colorado with her husband, who is a teacher. When she isn’t working or spending time with her husband, she blogs at worthy of Agape, promotes her book, and is a managing editor at Ignitum Today.
I got to know Hevel through the 7 Quick Takes on ConversionDiary.Com. The two of us have bonded over discussing religion, some politics, crocheting, and just life in general. He has a very unique family (which I can’t keep straight to save my life) and he keeps me updated on the doings of Harel Skaat. 🙂
Hevel is a second hand vegetarian, he only eats animals that are herbivores. He is dedicated to find the best kosher bacon replacement, living the immigrant life in Israel, raising a noisy, multilingual and multicultural family. He loves to crochet, cook, watch Doctor Who, and go to Harel Skaat concerts. The most important week after the high holy days for him is the week of the Eurovision Song Contest.
I discovered Claire only recently and I’m glad that I did. She’s about half my age but I find her writing on ethics, religion, and public policy to be pretty compelling even if I disagree from time to time. She starts college this fall and I can’t wait to see what adventures she has.
Claire is an opinionated 18-year-old living in Virginia and about to head off to college in DC. She converted to Catholicism in February and enjoys blogging from Laughing Joyously, where she has been subjecting the Internet to her eclectic ramblings for the last six months. In her free time, she likes catching up on all the books she didn’t get to read during high school, good-naturedly arguing with friends, and bothering her legislators.
They’ll be posting their thoughts on writing next week and I’ll link them to here when they do. I recommend you go and check all of them out!