Entering the Story in the Middle

Open up a book to a random page in the middle and start reading. I did that, and read:

“I skirted the edge of the property, down an access road to a building site. A sign read: HAZLE CLOSE–HIGHLY PRIZED EXECUTIVE HOMES IN THE HEART OF ENGLAND. Upstairs at Dockery, lights were on. . . ” (David Mitchell, Cloud Atlas, p. 163)

The above quote isn’t really significant except for the fact that I can’t start the story there and have any idea what happened before. It is impossible to jump into the middle of a story and have a true sense of what the story is about. Let me add that I am actually currently reading Cloud Atlas and haven’t quite figured out what the story is about yet anyway, but it is all good.

My point here is that, in the blogging world, we often jump into the middle of a story. I don’t mean that we all write posts in a logical or linear order that starts at the beginning. But, we all do have some kind story that can be uncovered by people reading our blogs. And yet, we stumble upon an interesting title or an image that catches our eye and jump into the story at a random point. None of us have time to really look back at the beginning of the story (or the earliest posts of a blogger) and catch up. It is hard enough to keep up with reading new posts without having to backtrack to catch up in some way.

I realized this as I reflected on my past writings in yesterday’s post. I often return to common threads or themes in my writing, and they build on one another. Or I share a story that can only really be understood if you’ve read an earlier story. I try to point back to those important links, but who has time to really read them all?

I wonder if there is one post that gives the foundation for everything a reader needs to know in order to jump in without confusion. I guess it would be my About page, but is it really? Does that little descriptive paragraph tell my readers everything they need to know to understand me? I have to think about the post that all reader’s should read, and somehow send people in that direction. For those of you who have been reading me for a while, is there one post that you remember that made you think I am really interested in this woman’s story?

What about you? Is there one key post that you wish all your readers would read so that they have a foundation to understand your story? If so, what is it. Post a link here

On Blog Awards and Community Questions

Yesterday was a big day. I wrote a post that sparked a lot of interesting discussion and made me think more about the topic, which may lead to another post (although not today).

I spent the day with my family, driving to Springfield, MO partially on “business” (my husband had to pick up a repaired moving light for the theater) and partially for family time. After a three hour drive (one way) we went to the Discovery Museum and had a late lunch at a Japanese food restaurant. Not the worlds best Japanese food, but it was nice to get something different for a change. I again played with my camera, and here are some of the cool shots from the museum.

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Throughout the day, I realized how “addicted” (for lack of a better word) I have become to connecting with this blogging family. For some reason the wireless on my cell phone was not working all day, leaving me stranded with no knowledge of whether or not anyone had read or liked my post. HORRORS! I only discovered the interesting comments and conversations as we drove back home, but of course I could not reply until we actually got here. So I rushed to my computer as soon as we arrived, and responded to all the comments. Then I looked at the list of posts I had missed throughout the day and I realized how easy it is to get behind when you love to follow so many people.

I hop on over to Facebook for a bit (I spend much less time there these days) only to discover that a friend of mine who uses Blogspot had won two awards. She doesn’t make it on my subscription list, so I have to follow her through Facebook or just by visiting her page. I went over to see what was up only to discover that she had passed one of those awards onto me: The Lovely Blog Award.

As far as I can tell this one has no obligations, but it made me feel warm and fuzzy inside, and touched that someone really liked me and my work that much (she said amazingly kind words on the post where she gave me the award). So, of course I want to share the wealth, but I am surrounded by lovely bloggers and had no clue who to choose. So, I am going to be like the giant weenie mobile that once drove around America saying “spot the weenie mobile and you have the chance to win . . . ” (only in the US, I’m almost too embarrassed to write that).

 

Oscar Mayer Weiner Mobile

 

 

 

Anyway, I intend to pass award along as I read lovely blogs over the next few days. Whoever inspires me or reminds me of loveliness may be the recipient of this award. Picture me tooling around the internet superhighway  in a cute purple Volkswagon Bug (not my real car, but I think it would be fun to use as an award car, and it is perfect for me) carrying special awards to hand out to deserving recipients.

Of course, the first post I read today was an announcement from Vixter, at Little Miss Everything who never fails to brighten my day with her sweet and intelligent reflections on life as a singleton in England.  (For those of you who don’t know, I love all things British). She won an award yesterday too, and passed it onto me! This one is called The Versatile Blogger Award and does come with a list of rules. I, however, am choosing to ignore the rules. I will pass this award along as well, for those bloggers that consistently surprise me with the versatility of their posts.

Anyway, Vixter was also actually one of the first people I thought deserved The Lovely Blogger Award, so she is a double award winner on this day. Yay, Vix.

All of this led to me thinking about the blogging community. I’ve learned a lot both from and about people in this blogging world. But I always have questions that I want to ask, and more than I want to learn. I’d like to think that if I ever met any of you we would have a truly “lovely” (sorry the word is stuck in my head today discussion over lunch or tea, and some of you would turn out to be kindred spirits (if you haven’t already). Sometimes I ask those questions in my comments, but usually I feel like “if they wanted me to know that, they would already have blogged about it.”

So today, I would like for you, my kind readers to post a question or questions that you would like me to answer. They can be silly or serious? There are no restrictions? If I don’t feel comfortable answering one, I’ll let you know. If the answers are worthy of a post, look for those posts as they come. If the answer is simple, I may simply respond.

So there it is, dear community of blogging friends. Lisa is open for questions . . . and may surprise you with an award or two while she answers them. I’m looking forward to the search as I continue to read your wonderful blogs.

Thank you all for your kind words and support on this strange journey!

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