I started this year with a commitment to post something to my blog every day, and today marks the 250th day in a row I’ve shared with you on the Mushy Cloud. There has been just one day where I had a “guest” contributor, and that was my husband on the day that I was incapacitated in A&E waiting for the magic bullet of antibiotics and painkillers to do their job and reduce the swelling in my throat. But even so, there has been a post every day since 1st January on the Mushy Cloud, and I’m somewhat pleased that we have done it.
But I wonder if it has been worth it? I mean, I love writing and sharing with you and all that, but I wonder if setting off on such a commitment as “postaday2021” has proved anything significant?
I’ve been thinking about this a lot as I’ve been approaching this 250 day landmark, and I think I’ve more or less come to the conclusion that yes it has; it has shown that it is possible to produce something each day, even on the days where I would have gladly thrown my laptop out of the window. Not only that, but having the weight of expectation on myself to post each day has meant that I’ve been more alert to the things going on around me to stimulate my thought processes and to give me ideas about what to write or share in picture form.
When I began my writing journey with the OU some five or six years ago, one of the first pieces of advice we were given was to keep a notebook with us all the time and record the things that spark our interest. It might be a snippet of conversation, or a particularly striking character, or the description of a building or whatever it is. The other piece of advice we were given was to write every day. I have to admit that this particular piece of advice has been a chore at times, and many days – especially in the early stages – I found it difficult and I didn’t always do it.
But this year has been different, and I’ve found that unless I’m extremely ill (as I was the other week), I have managed to put either pen to paper or fingers to keys at some point each day, and the more I write, the easier it has become to write.
I am writing quite often in my professional life as a minister in that I write funeral eulogies (14 and counting since July), sermons (countless!), social media posts (countless!), as well as the more formal emails to funeral directors, baptism and funeral families and so many more pieces of communication across the team. Even when I was on holiday I captured in my notebook impressions of the things we’d done each day and though I didn’t share everything on here, I have it all in my personal notes.
I’ve written about my battles with fibromyalgia, my cycling adventures, our family holiday, my ordination and the journey I have had leading up to it; I’ve shared poems and prayers, inspirational quotes and Bible verses to uplift you; I’ve posted personal photographs as well as cartoon memes that I’ve found online which have made me laugh; I’ve given you book reviews, pointers towards new musicians (have you listened to Mac Powell yet? My current favourite!) and I have even shared some of our family recipes with you. In total, I have written just over 104,000 words on the Mushy Cloud in 2021, which is probably about the length of a decent novel. Now there’s a thought for next year…
It has been a busy old time on the Mushy Cloud, but for all that I’ve shared publicly, I’ve written about double the amount in my own personal notebook.
And you may be wondering how big this notebook is that I started all those years ago, but in all honesty, I have gone through dozens of notebooks in that time. When I say “notebook”, it actually means anything and everything from a booklet of paper that I have bound myself, to a sketch book, or a beautiful notebook from Paperchase, or even digital pages on OneNote which I can access from any of my devices. I wish I could be like those Romantic poets who just had one book and one quill with which to write, but I’m more eclectic than that, and I have notes and scribbles literally all over the place. I wonder if next year’s writing commitment ought to be more along the lines of being organised in my note taking and storage rather than blogging each day?!
Anyway, next year’s resolutions are about 3 months off from thinking about yet, and today’s story is that for 2021, it is so far so good. I think that even if you have only dipped in and out, or have only visited for the first time today, you can see that making a commitment to blog something each day certainly has been worth it. If nothing else, I’m well into the habit of daily writing now and I really enjoy sharing with you each day.
I wonder if I’ll make it to 365 this year without missing a day? Let’s find out in the next 115 days!
Grace and peace,