Help Me Christen My Blog

Hi Writers,

As this is my first ever blog posting, it seemed appropriate to set it off in the right spirit with a christening of sorts, so here goes:

The world is always ready to receive talent with open arms.

This fortune cookie wisdom has been taped to my computer monitor for the past four years I’ve been an editor here at Writer’s Digest. It was left behind by the editor before me, and it helps motivate me when I’m getting ready to write.

It’s rather ironic that I’m just now entering blogdom, since I wrote an article on blogging when it was the hot new thing, way back in the dark ages of 2001 The Art of the Blog. It was difficult to even find bloggers to interview back then, let alone someone who could speak quotably on the subject.
So here I am, editrix of Writer’s Digest, blogging for the first time. You’d think I’d have my hands full trying to keep Brian Klems, Kevin Alexander and all of the WD forumites (who call me “the pit boss”) in line.

But the thing is, I’m a lifelong obsessive-compulsive reader, and I like to share what I read. In fact, on a neurotic note, I think I may have hyperlexia: “A condition in which the main characteristics are an above average ability to read accompanied with a below average ability to understand spoken language. The symptoms are closely related to those of autism.”

And possibly even hypergraphia: “An overwhelming urge to write. It is not itself a disorder, but can be associated with temporal lobe changes in epilepsy and mania.”

(Thank God for the Internet, how else would we research our obscure psychological disorders?)  

Anyway, disorder or not, I do a ridiculous amount of reading. Lucky for me, I finally landed a job where they pay me to read. But it occurred to me that you writers may not have fallen into a gig where someone pays you to do what you’d probably do for free (shhh… don’t tell my bosses).

So here’s the deal, let me do the scanning for you. I’m going to keep an eye on the publishing industry and other writerly news and report back to you by providing links you might be interested in, along with commentary. Agree or disagree, I’d love to hear from you either way. The WD forumites will tell you that I enjoy verbal sparring as long everyone’s having a good time–so let’s mix it up.

And to kick things off, I’m asking anyone dropping in to help christen my blog properly by posting the quotes you have taped to your writing desk or computer. Until next time…

Keep Writing,

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30 thoughts on “Help Me Christen My Blog

  1. Dorothy Piper

    After wondering what all the buzz is about, I have entered the bewildering world of blogging by registering I’m impressed by the names some people have given to their blogs but one blogging term – the blogroll – makes me cringe. For me, it’s a bit too close to the slang word kids use for a toilet roll.
    I also have a problem. How do I copy a graphic from another blog and incorporate it into mine? I’ve tried copying and pasting but that didn’t work. Can somebody please help a 71-year old beginner?

  2. Kirby

    "Let go, let God." A friend said this to me long ago. What made it mean so much was that the friend who said it was married to an atheist and I know that she struggled with her belief.

    When I hit a rough patch, I panic (I’m human). But just before curling into the fetal position, "Let go, let God" comes to my mind and I begin to breathe again.

  3. Josie

    "There are two types of people – those who find the world a friendly place, and those who find the world a hostile place."

    – Albert Einstein –

    It has taken me a whole bunch of decades to figure out that being with the folks who find the world a friendly place is enlightening, enriching, and a heck of a lot of fun. And more importantly, that I should merely tell the folks who find the world a hostile place – that I’m staying at home tonight to wash my hair.

    As far as I can tell so far, those of you who have contributed to this blog are the ones who find the world a friendly place. Yay for us!

  4. Lisa Bakewell

    Maria- Sounds like we’re going to have some fun here! I’m excited to see what interesting topics you’re going to bring to the table.

    The quote that I have on my blog and website reads:

    "Let’s just go ahead and be what we were made to be." (Romans 12:6, The Message)

    The verse is significant to me because I read it about the time I was laid off from my job (unexpectedly) and was wondering if I could make a go of writing full time. It was a personal message to me saying "go for it!"

  5. Charlotte Hilliard

    I’m still wondering what a Blog really is, and what they are for.

    I don’t do changes well, they happen and I don’t know about them until 5 years later. ha

    My motto is ‘This too will pass’ and ‘If it does not kill you, it makes you stronger.’

    I should be very strong but I’m not. I took down all the quotes from around my computer, I couldn’t see my desk.


  6. Kim Ball

    Several months ago, I found a pearl of a fortune in a fortune cookie which said, "You are a lover of words. Someday you will write a book." It’s not so often that a relevant fortune comes into my life and so, when I pulled this gem from the broken pieces of burnt flour I was somehow at peace with the world. Yes, someday I will write a book. And while I was pretty confident in this without the encouragement of a flimsy half an inch wide scrap of paper, I decided to enlarged it and frame it (with the original pasted on the bottom to prove authenticity) if only to remind me of the strange forces at work in the universe.


  7. Deborah B

    Well, I write on a laptop so I don’t have anything taped to my monitor, but my motto is: GO FOR IT!
    Iit comes up on my cellphone and I type it at the beginning of every article, chapter & anything else I attempt to write. When I finish the piece, and send it off, I delete the motto. Hmm, maybe I should leave it on there and more magazines, agents, etc would take the hint. Like your idea for posting interesting links. Thanks

  8. Paul Kirkpatrick

    Hi Maria,

    Posted in front of me are ten two letter words. "If It Is To Be It Is Up To Me."

    I’m excited about getting your scoops.

    Keep up the great job you do.


  9. Sheila

    I have kept a Frank & Ernest cartoon from the 70’s hanging above several generations of typewriters and computers. Although the technology in the cartoon is out of date, the concept is still the same. It shows Frank and Ernest standing outside an office supply store and it reads:
    "I bought a new typewriter. All you have to do to be a great writer is to figure out which keys to hit."

    When the writing is tiring and tedious one look at that cartoon and I become more tenacious. It always makes me laugh.

    Another cartoon I clipped from the paper last summer shows a man and woman standing in a kitchen and the woman says:
    "You want me to cook! I don’t cook, I write. I will write you an essay about cooking, but I don’t cook."

    I’m going to have that one enlarged and placed prominently in the kitchen.

    On a serious note, the one quote that has kept me going through many difficult situations is:
    "A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step."

  10. Pepper Hume

    Sheesh, the Internet is seductive! I subscribed to Tips and Updates from Writer’s Digest which led me to your blog where I find you have also been seduced by the Internet. Who knew hyperlexia and hypergraphia existed? Is there one for compulsive love of language and collecting of vocabulary? If not, I’ll have to make one up… hypervocabulia? And how about one for dyslexia of the fingers while typing?

    As for quotes, I use my current fave after my signature on emails: "…people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." by Maya Angelou. I think it applies to writers most of all.

  11. J.B. Lee

    I am always inspired by this quote from Catherine Drinker Bowen. I have it taped by my computer. "Writing, I think, is not apart from living. Writing is a kind of double living. The writer experiences everything twice. Once in reality and once in that mirror which waits always before or behind."
    Good luck with your new blog!
    J.B. Lee

  12. Lisa

    Cool Digs Chick! When I grow up, I wanna be just like you! :o)

    The quote on my computer:

    "Write Naked"

    Peel away all the junk of the day, shut off the voices in your head, slay the naysayers telling you that "you can’t", and just get the words on paper.

    Thanks for all your attention and hard work Maria!


  13. Brak

    Hey Maria,

    I really like what you have going on here.

    Perhaps you could provide some insight to new bloggers in your column as well. I don’t want to suggest more work for you, ‘cuz it sounds to me you have enough on your plate as it is, but new bloggers such as myself could use as much advice as we can get.

    Just a thought.

    Anyway, I’m looking forward to your next entry. Don’t become a stranger over on the forum, though.

    Take care,


  14. Diane

    Great start to the blogging, Maria! You asked for a quote (not exactly on my computer, but always in my mind): "You haven’t failed until you quit." I don’t know where it came from, but it keeps me going. I’ll be watching for your future blogs for information and inspiration. Cheers!

  15. Bonnie Lacy

    I’m looking forward to reading your wisdom! Enjoyed the above wisdom also. A quote that I use with many venus – "“Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming ‘Wow – what a Ride!’”

    —Peter Sage

  16. Bevsie

    I keep writing novels instead of BLOGS and the only people who have read them are my friends, family and my psychiatrist. Maybe I should break them down into blogs and get a home page. My bit of wisdom…."The world is governed not by thought or imagination, but by opinion". Ben Franklin

  17. Elaine

    I have a friend who sends a Quote of the Day email. They’re always inspiring, so I end up pasting a few at a time to the wall behind my desk. I rotate them often. Here’s my current favorite, which helped me to complete my recent book:

    "You have to decide what your highest priorities are and have the courage – pleasantly, smilingly, non-apologetically – to say ‘no’ to other things. And the best way you do that is by having a bigger ‘yes’ burning inside. The enemy of the ‘best’ is often the ‘good." Stephen Covey

  18. airen

    wonderful blog page! I just got back to writing after release from a bad marriage. Who knew that I would get back to writing and not about fishing as I was doing before I got married. I am refreshed and now writing in my own little world. I find these quotes (kept taped to the edge of my screen, on the wall and in the comfort room) keep my stories going strong. "Don’t edit when writing, WRITE!" "two thousand words a day MINIMUM!" "Get up and walk around, come back and write!" These bits of wisdom keep me at it and also remind me that it isn’t all about writing. Oh, the last and probably for me the most important quote.. "If it is after midnight, go to bed dummy."

  19. E.G. Harris

    My screen saver delivers a series of great quotes. Here are a couple:

    "If you don’t have enough madness in you, go out and rehabilitate yourself." ~Rumi

    "When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change." ~ Wayne Dyer

  20. Kim Buchanan

    Most of my really good quotes didn’t make the transition to my new flat screen monitor; but years ago, when my kids were just toddlers, I had a picture of Danielle Steel on my monitor as a reminder that you can be a prolific writer with a house full of kids.

    I also had a quote on my screen saver from a meeting where J.A. Jance was the keynote. She said, "A writer is someone who has written today."

    ‘Nuf said.

  21. Cindy a.k.a Gooblink

    Yay, welcome to our blogdom. 🙂

    "…we…rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint…"
    Apostle Paul Letter to Romans 5:3-5

  22. SummerBreeze

    Great start on your blog. Can’t wait to see what writerly news you share with us. Tell a forumite where you are; give us a chance to write and we show up.

    I have quotes everywhere. These are on the home monitor.


    The only real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscape but in having new eyes.-Marcel Proust

    We generate the success in our lives that we believe we deserve.
    -Dr. Phil

  23. Lisa

    Believe it or not, my youngest kid has DYSGRAPHIA. Now that makes writing down stories a rea challenge. So instead, he tells stories with pictures. Be glad you didn’t end up with that one!

    Great blog, Maria – and welcome to the world of prolific and often pointless pontification!

  24. Bob

    Cool Maria, you’ve got it in hyper-drive already. Looking forward to posting until you throw me out. I both loath and love irony, which is ironic, right. But more importantly I also have trouble understanding the spoken word, usually it only occurs when it’s a woman speaking. I guess it’s another man flaw. Seriously though, this looks hyper-awesome.

    Ps: Stay off the internet, no need for more hypertexted based maladies

  25. Kaycee Looney(writer)

    I recently went through two surgeries. One of the medical staff members found a small piece of paper in my file. "I have no idea how this got in here," she said, "but I thought you should have it."

    It read: You are involved, immersed – make sure you are not drowning. – The River

    I keep it on the wall above my desk to remind me not to forget to take some time away once in awhile. It’s fine to be immersed as long as you know your limits.


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