Recruiting future bloggers in unlikely places!

fairy-tales3

I spent last couple of days in one of those workshops aptly titled ‘Writing for Work’ where one is meant to learn how to write ‘effectively and efficiently.’ In other words how to use words thriftily.

I understand it is called ‘plain English.’ You only use necessary words and arrange them in such way to get the point across in the most economical way. No frills permitted; just a plain clothing and no, or minimal make-up! One’s objective is to be useful and practical, rather than playful, or colourful, or joyful!

It is something I always struggled with! And not because I do not understand, or object to the benefits of the concept, not at all, but because I love words so much!

I love their different shades, sounds they make, fragrances and textures they arouse … words are simply magical. Because, as by magic, words transport you into the world of a writer; you will see what a writer saw but through your own eyes!

If I wrote; ‘she wore a dress of a deep green silk, embroidered with the delicate golden thread across the bodice …’ you will form the picture of that dress in your mind and in that way saw not only the dress I described, but also your own, unique version of that dress. If I painted or drew a portrait of a woman wearing the dress, you will only see my vision of it. This is why I love magic of words; they evoke your own imagination, indulge your own, private self.

Besides, it took me years of dedication and solitude to learn all those English words, can’t I be allowed to use as many as I like, and arrange them in any outlandish way I wish?  

And so it is easy to see why I was certainly not the best pupil in the ‘plan English’ class! Until something quite unexpected happened!

The tutor, a fine woman with love for language, asked whether anyone knows anything about blogging.

Oh my, it was like mega lightening suddenly went off on a dark stage! Before any wise or otherwise guarded thought could possibly form in my mind, my hand went up, and here I am beaming like a five year old … I know about blogging! I have a blog!

As soon as I heard that both; the tutor and one of my colleagues are thinking of venturing into blogosphere, I embarked on listing endless joys and benefits of blogging!

Well, there was no stopping me after that … I even clapped my hands while exclaiming; ‘Oh it gives me such joy to talk about blogging!’ Yes, this is exactly what I said and the way I said it … happily, proudly, naively, genuinely, and above all freely.

Without being aware of it at the time, in that fleeing moment my true self completely overtook my daily/conformed/censored self! And what the bliss that was!

I could hardly wait for a break to provide further encouragement to potential bloggers; unashamedly promoting our word press community, our camaraderie, and importance of regular blogging … I even offered practical assistance with setting up a blog! And all that with my ‘grand’ experience of four blogging months!

But I did not talk about blogging or offered assistance as a ‘blogging experts’, not at all! I spoke from my heart, the same place I blog from … the only place our true self knows.

I may never really learn or warm to the concept of ‘word economy’, but I have learned one important lesson.  When we somehow manage – by trick or accident – to silence, to ignore, our daily tortured, censored and otherwise beaten into submission self – as by magic – our true self enters the stage with mega lighting and fairy dust to turn us into a person (even if just for a fleeing moment) we have always meant to be!

For that reason alone – the course was priceless … not to mention ‘recruitment’ of some newbie bloggers!

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Author: Daniela

Reader, Writer, Mother, Freethinker, Habitual Day Dreamer, Blogger - Sharing Ideas, Poetry, Prose, and Conversations on the Lantern Post!

52 thoughts on “Recruiting future bloggers in unlikely places!”

  1. I know that feeling of supressing the real self in the workplace – am so glad I spotted the same in you as I sped past your desk in that ugly building!

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    1. My dear Deborah,

      I am very glad for that as well -:)! One day (perhaps not so distant any more) I will shed all that suppression like an old skin!
      Many thanks for reading and commenting,
      Daniela

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  2. As always, that is just so great Daniela. And I am sure the beginners in blogging will learn a great deal from someone like you who writes from her heart and that her words drag her followers to her blog each time every time.

    Best wishes to your recruitment season.😉

    -Asha

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      1. At the same time, I will be your good student in how to mix words in different flavours to come up with the ultimate meal ,so to speak, if you allow me to use that analogy

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  3. How proud you must have been to raise your hand – as a blogger. Isn´t it wonderful how bloggers always try to help each and encourage each other? Like a world-wide blogging family🙂

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    1. Oh Marianne, you are spot on! Opening one’s blog page often feels like coming home!
      Many thanks for visiting and commenting,
      All the Best
      Daniela
      P.S. Thanks for letting me know the other day that rains have not washed you away -:)))

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    1. Hi Clare,

      I certainly admire you for finding joy in writing at work! I am legally trained (they have even given me a Master’s Degree -:))) and while I can understand where the mentioned legal drafter was coming from … I love to indulge in beauty of words just for the sake of it!

      Many thanks for visiting and commenting,

      Kind Regards,
      Daniela

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  4. Way way (way!) back in high school, I had an English teacher who’s mantra was “omit needless words”. This has haunted me my whole life. She was ruthless with her red pen. Was she being helpful or smothering? A bit of both, I think.

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    1. Hi my dear,

      I never had an English teacher, (I learned all my English by living in NZ -:), still I can understand the logic behind the idea of ‘omitting needless words’ you teacher was so fond of. I think she meant to be helpful and probably was -;) When I am writing for other purpose rather than for my own pleasure, I do try and follow ‘economy rules’!

      Many thanks for the visit and comment!
      Kind Regards,
      Daniela

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    1. Hi Wally,

      Please do not apologize -:) of course I will check it out! As writers, I think we all find it both challenging and thrilling to ‘lend’ our eyes to our readers! It is perhaps the most challenging and the most rewarding aspect of writing.

      Many thanks for reading and commenting,
      Daniela

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  5. To me it seems that the fundamental principle of plain English is not thrift – but rather ‘write for your reader and your purpose’.

    If your purpose is to draw the reader into your world and grant them a piece of your emotional response to a beautiful dress, then describing words are absolutely essential. It not be thrifty to leave them out – any more than it would be thrifty to leave the spices out of a curry. It would be parsimonious, and would doom the writing (and the curry) to fail in its purpose.

    But if your purpose is to ask the reader to fill in a form and return it by a specific date, then the ‘frills’ become a barrier to communication between you and the reader.

    Apart from that small cavil about the definition of plain English, I agree with what you say and enjoy the way you said it. That’s one of the (many) reasons I love blogging. We Write people gravitated to plain English because we love words. Our blog is not just about plain English, but also about the magic of words. We get a great kick out of taking our round-office discussions into the blogosphere.

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    1. Hi Judy,

      Thank you so much for reading and commenting! I am honoured you visited my little Lantern!
      It is indeed essential to dispense with ‘frills’ when asking the reader to fill in a form … as a writer (at least an aspiring one) I dream to move as far as possible from writing that asks the reader to fill in any kind of form or such! This is why I love your analogy with curry … I am after that ‘curry of words’!

      And you and your colleagues are doing a fine job indeed with helping likes of me to not become obese from feasting far too much on that curry -:)!!

      Lovers of words unite! (Somebody we both know would, I believe, love this ‘call to arms’)

      Many thanks
      Daniela

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  6. I agree with Judy on this—there is more to plain English than ‘thrift’ with words. There is a place for pared back writing that appeals to logic, and a place for a more lush style appealing to emotion. As Judy says, it depends on the reader and your purpose. Surprisingly, some plain English techniques such as using strong verbs and using concrete rather than abstract words work well for all types of writing. I know you know all this . Hold on to your dream of moving away from writing that asks people to fill in forms. .

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    1. Hi Janet -:)!

      Thank you very much for reading and commenting -:))! I always enjoy your thoughtful observations. I do agree with Judy too! But you know me; if there is any ‘lush style’ to be evoked … here I come! I probably described the best how I feel about words in my post ‘Reading Nabokov again’. There is however something I am noticing more and more since I started blogging; it is changing my writing. Moreover, I am starting to see that more confidence one gains in the second language, less words are required to describe something. Sounds paradoxical but it is indeed true!

      Many thanks,
      Daniela
      P.S. I will hold on my dream … it is all I got left!

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    1. Thank you so very much my dear -:)!

      I am so glad you liked it -:))). I did enjoy talking about blogging because it does provide lots of joy and brings people from all over the world together!

      Many thanks,
      Daniela

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  7. Interesting Blog. I’m a disabled housewife who oves to sew & bead & write when my body allows me to. I love writing poetry and recently got back into the art. Simplicity is what I love most in poetry not getting “too” wordy. But just enough to get a visual or that ahhhh i get it moment when you are reading poetry. I’m currently searching for decent poetry publishers. I have 3 blogs. http://nightdreamer371.blogspot.com http://stillsurviving371.blogspot.com and finally http://isitjustme371.blogspot.com Happy Writing…. Heather

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    1. Dear Heather,

      Thank you very much for reading and commenting -:)! I love poetry too and have posted some of my poems on this blog. To me poetry has always been like capturing images, symbols, smells, colours, and simply feelings of being alive with words. Prose tells a story, poetry ‘paints’ a story with symbols. I am impressed that you can write three blogs … I work full time and only just manage to find time for one blog! I will certainly visit your blogs.

      Unfortunately I do not know about poetry publishers, but I often visit Poetry Fundation journal on line.

      Kind Regards,
      Daniela

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  8. To be yourself is the only REAL way to go….but, funny (or not), it is sometimes ironic that we have to be most guarded with those closest to us; in my case–sons! Though great in long-winded business meetings, the male offspring species have little patience with their mom’s wordiness. According to Shakespeare, I am not alone…..as the world turns round and round…….

    Polonius:
    This above all: to thine own self be true,

    And it must follow, as the night the day,
    Thou canst not then be false to any man.
    Farewell, my blessing season this in thee!

    Laertes:
    Most humbly do I take my leave, my lord.

    Hamlet Act 1, scene 3, 78–82
    “To thine own self be true” is Polonius’s last piece of advice to his son Laertes, who is in a hurry to get on the next boat to Paris, where he’ll be safe from his father’s long-winded speeches

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    1. Dear Barbara,

      You are not alone indeed! Not only that you can find confront in knowing the same was occurring while Shakespeare was writing, but I can tell you from personal experience that daughters are no better!

      It is the ‘curse’ of youth … the impatience, the knowing it all, the rush into swirls of life … remember those days? I do! And so I just let my girl (18) brush off all my wordiness … knowing she will have a daughter one day!

      Many thanks for visiting and commenting -:))

      Best Wishes

      Daniela

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  9. Reading your post and the comments above was delightful.

    I began reading and writing when I was four years old and have never stopped. I have blogged for over 7 years and identify myself as a blogger, not as a writer. That’s despite the fact that I have been a technical writer for many years.

    I love reading and love the physicality of a holding a printed book in my hands. I have re-read many books simply because I have been enchanted by the way some writers’ use words.

    When it comes to books, I savor the flavor of well written descriptive tomes. When it comes to blog posts, I will read any length of post. I tend to bookmark longer posts and read them after my working day is done but don’t always read lengthy posts on the same day they are published.

    Here’s a quote from another blogger whose advice I value and follow:

    “Brevity is an important goal in online writing. Longer posts can be intimidating. Many visitors will only scan long posts at best. The theory is that online readers have relatively short attention spans. Of course, there are exceptions, but in general I think it is good advice to think small. Keep it simple and clear. And when it comes to editing: when it doubt, cut it out.” Robert Stevenson

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    1. Thank you so much for your thoughtful and helpful comment!

      I am so happy to hear that there are still some people who love and savour physicality of holding a printed book. It is for that reason I never really warmed to electronic devices such as Kindle, even though I value their practical aspects.

      While my blogging experience is very short, it thought me a many things and has quickly become an integral part of my life. Robert Stevenson’s advice is very sound indeed and I try to keep in mind that length of the post is very important, but must admit that writer in my sometimes ‘takes off’!

      Many thanks,
      Daniela

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  10. You speak from the heart.I tried to connect with the community but I don’t understand the nature of the community. I love writing but i will have to work hard for each blog to have visitors.quite a bit of work is required build up leadership.i am a part of an Indian blogging community called “sulekha” where i get high viewership and also large no of comments.I had work hard to make others come to my log when started with WordPress. I am too tired to make such an effort again and again to get regular readership. However i would love to be involved in a global community like word press.

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    1. Hi -:)

      Thank you visiting the Lantern! While it is true that one has to work hard, at least initially, to attract and most importantly retain regular readership, it is worth the effort many times over! For me there never was an issue even though I use my second language on the Lantern, but I love writing, people and connections! At the end of the day it comes down to what we truly love (just like most things in life).

      Take Care and keep on Blogging,
      Kind Regards,
      Daniela

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  11. there are so many way to say the same thing. that became clear to me as i was writing my first newspaper essay, as wrote and rewrote it. it’s all about the words you use and how effectively you put them together. you, daniella, put the together in a charming and interesting way. That’s why you attract so many followers, your sincerity comes through in your writing.

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    1. Hi -:),

      Thank you very, very much for reading and commenting! I cannot agree more with your observations on different ways to use words. Words, and how we use them matters so much! Nothing makes me happier than to hear that my words bring sincerity -:)))!

      Many thanks,
      Daniela

      Like

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