Monday, January 9, 2017

My Blog Story: Starting a New Year

I am a voracious reader and really enjoy learning about the world. I've always admired people who can write a lot and share what they are thinking since it helps me learn and understand the world a little bit better. If you are in the field of education, writing is important. Sharing ideas and contributing is a cornerstone of the field and I believe whether you are a professor or not you should get the word out on what you are doing. However, writing is not one of my strong suits and I've always struggled to put ideas and thoughts from my mind onto something that I could share. This year The Edublogger ( has offered to send weekly prompts to people in an effort to help people write something and I thought that it would be a great way for me to try and get in the habit of writing and sharing regularly.

Well, Tuesday arrived and an email popped up from them and I thought "Oh geeeze, I forgot about this and I now have to do it. Ugh." But I committed and it's something I really want to do professionally so I opened the email. I was a bit surprised by the topic of "My Blog Story" Somehow I had been thinking of something like, "Ten Things that you do with Technology". But the more I thought about it, the more I liked starting with this topic. It allows me to set the tone for my blog and to think about what I want to write about here. I think this will help me focus my future writing and what I want to share with others. So here it goes...

My Story

What you might find in my blog. Like I said earlier I enjoy reading and learning. I also enjoy sharing what I've found so I expect that I will be including links and things from other sources on my blog. I don't know if that is something people will find valuable or not, but we'll see.

I have started a blog on and off for years. I am hoping that I can use this opportunity to make it something consistent. I think it will help me reflect on what I am doing and where I would like to go. Hopefully it will help me develop professionally and allow me to be better organized.

I read other blogs, but not consistently. I hope to also get into that habit a little more with this project. Ed Tech put out a nice guide of 50 Higher Education Blogs and I've tried reading some of those. You may want to take a look at some of them.

They put down some guidelines for the post and I thought I would write about these a little as well.
  • quality over quantity – some of the best blogs have short but impactful posts. Don’t force an arbitrary word count or length requirement on yourself.
Hopefully. I won't do this. I don't want to blather on about something and hope to share something that people will find useful, but I am not exactly sure whether my writing is focused and impactful for readers or not. This one feels a little more like a personal diary than something for the public. More about my inner process and motivation, which sounds better for a writer. Hopefully I will make adjustments as I go along with this.  
  • posts that are helpful to the reader tend to be the most popular, so try and keep your potential reader in mind if building an audience is one of your blogging goals.
Reader in mind....Hmmm Who is my reader? Well, I hope it will be people who are interested in Technology and how we apply it to learning. But beyond that I am not sure. Is it for beginners? Experts? I am not sure it is for either of those. I don't know if an expert would find what I say valuable and I'm not sure about a beginner either. I don't know if I'll be writing something like "Trying Google for the First Time". I don't think that is where I want the focus to be...but maybe. I know when I was teaching writing to ESL students that was something we always tried to focus on in the beginning. Who is your audience? But it isn't always easy and I find my self struggling with this.  
  • reuse and recycle – if we hit a topic that you’ve written about before, take the opportunity to edit, update, and republish, or simply leave a link to your older posts for the community. It is ok for blog posts to be living documents that evolve over time.
I like this idea of coming back to a topic. Things change over time and it is good to revisit them to see what has changed and how you have changed as well. I'll keep this in mind for the future. 

If you are interested in trying this for yourself checkout the link below.

See you next time!

Twitter md108091


  1. Hi Mike

    Welcome to the Edublogs Club!

    Thanks for sharing your blogging story. I think Ronnie choose well starting with it because it does help us all think about where we are at and what we want to achieve by participating in the club.

    I really love the idea of the topic "Ten Things that you do with Technology" and have passed it onto Ronnie (we work together).

    My quick tips would be very different from Ronnie's tips -- but that is the great bit about blogging by connecting with each other we learn different things. My tips would be more in line with Lyn Hilt's advice to new bloggers -


    1. Sue, Thanks for the comments. I like your connection with Lyn's thoughts on writing for YOU and writing everyday. This is something that I really struggle with and hope that this project with help with that. I don't know if I WILL write everyday (or have to) but I do want it to be something more habitual and no a pipe dream of mine. I am also looking forward to reading what else people have to say on their blogs. I am finding it inspiring and glad that this project was implemented.

    2. Hi Mike

      I see a lot of new bloggers constrained worrying about audience and writing for their needs. Which is why my advice is focus on writing to satisfy your own needs. When you write about your passions or what you want to share/learn it comes through in what you write. Although I also wouldn't say write every day. I think a goal of once weekly is more achievable for most and having a weekly prompt helps develop consistency while taking off the pressure to decide on a topic.

      I'm also inspired by the project.