Wedding Website Adventures

We finally picked a date! June 1, 2013. I can’t really even describe what a relief that is, and how happy it makes me. Next step, wedding website.

Actually, we already have one. I made something about 7 months ago when we first got engaged using WeddingChannel.com. To be honest, none of the pre-fab backgrounds and formats were really working for me. It’s a great and easy tool, especially if you have zero experience blogging or website building, but I just wasn’t happy with the appearance. None of the options were really us.

Finally, it dawned on me to make my own site using WordPress. Why did it take me 7 months to figure that one out? The great thing about putting your wedding website on WordPress is that you have way more control over the formatting, the background, and the title. Also, we can keep it going long after the big day as a blog about our life.

Recent Web Development Activities

Going along with all that, this week I’ve been crazy into site building. Right now I’m still working on a site for my mom’s painting, www.ConniesArtGallery.com. I know I need to learn a lot more about upgrading appearances, but I’m getting somewhere. I’d like to have a job writing web content soon, so I’m trying to learn as much as I can about the technical aspects of web development. I worked for a year in SEO, so I know a little, but I need to learn more. So that’s what I’ll be doing this week during my down-time. Does anyone know of any free online tutorials that are especially helpful?

Dealing with Writer’s Block

What do you do when you can’t think of anything to write about? There are a million topics floating through my head right now. I can’t seem to get my brain to chill out for a sec and pick one. Actually, my stomach has just now decided to join my brain and tense up in a knot, making me severely stressed and uncomfortable.

How are you supposed to be a writer when every time you get a second to sit down and write, you freeze up? I have an hour lunch break at work, and whenever the shop is slow enough, I spend the time writing. Right now I only have 15 minutes left and I’m starting to hyperventilate. The worst part is, the more time I lose, the more I think about how I’m wasting the only fun time I have every day. I like my work environment, but I don’t like what I do. Writing during lunch is the only fun thing I do during the day.

The problem right now isn’t that I can’t think of a topic. It’s that I can’t settle on just one long enough to write anything interesting about it. Does this ever happen to anyone else? What do you do when that happens?

What’s My Writing Platform?

Recently I decided that I have to be a writer. If I don’t write, I’ll never be happy with myself. My day job is completely unsatisfying from a personal standpoint, and I really want to be doing something creative. I’m trying to get to the point where I can feel comfortable calling myself a writer. I’m doing this the only way I know how: practicing my writing and reading books on the subject.

In Sage Cohen’s book, The Productive Writer, chapter 2 is all about finding and defining your platform. What does she mean by that?

Well, to be honest, I’m not 100% sure. What the heck is a platform? It seems like she means you need to decide what topic you want to be known for. Are you a how-to girl, an expert in culinary history, a poet or a political analyst? What do you want to say to the world?

What do I want to say to the world? I have a lot of interests, but I have no idea what exactly I would want to write about. I have a degree in history and I love art. Could that be the makings of my platform? I wrote my graduation thesis on Italian immigrants and the Catholic Church in the early part of the 20th century. Could that be my platform? What about all the other things I want to write, like the novel I keep thinking about? How do I know when I’ve found the right platform?

In a way, this blog started as an exercise to discover my writing niche. Maybe I could look through my posts and figure out what topics I write about the most.

Maybe there is no clear answer. Maybe I just need to keep writing about whatever I want, and see where it leads me. Sounds like a plan!

Will I Ever Be a Writer?

I have always thought I wanted to write. When I was 10, my mom gave me The Idiot’s Guide to Creative Writing for Christmas. I’ve always loved that book. I’ve always gone to it for inspiration. I have yet to write anything that I consider makes me a real writer.

I always feel like writing, but I never have the discipline to see it through. My excuse for not writing is always “I have too many stories and I can’t pick one.” So, for the millionth time, enough with excuses. It’s time for me to pursue my dreams and be a writer.

I bought a few books on Amazon. Currently, I’m reading Sage Cohen’s book The Productive Writer: Tips & Tools to help you write more, stress less & create success. So far it looks great. She seems like she has a lot of great tips. I really want to go step by step with this, but even in chapter 1 she gives a long list of to-do’s that I know I won’t accomplish for a few days or weeks. And her pie chart of time made me realize that I have even less than I thought I did. Work takes up about 10 hours of my day, sleep another 8, then with my remaining 6, can I really do everything I need to do, keep my time with James, read the books I love, and STILL have enough time to have a freelance writing career? I have no idea. But I’m a big girl now, so I’m going to try.