Monday, July 30, 2012

Blogging Effort, Schedule, and Structure

Over the previous three years, in the time since I started The Permie Homestead Blog, I haven't been very successful keeping up a regular blogging schedule.  In the first couple of months I wrote a few dozen posts, and then fell drastically off after that.  I've had random streaks of writing, usually 3 or 4 posts long, but have never connected them together effectively enough to make my blog a regular effort.

I've decided to redouble my efforts to create a real blog that attracts readers, provides worthwhile information, and perhaps even generates a small income.  I've learned enough about permaculture over the past few years, and think that I am a good enough writer, that people will look to me as a resource.  Also, I'm in a place in my life where I finally have more to write about.  I'm in the city in which I want to live and start my homestead, I have a garden, I have a partner who is supportive of my efforts, and I am building community with like-minded people that will hopefully lead to volunteering on a farm of the type which I'd like to build myself, or possibly even an apprenticeship.

So, in an effort to maintain regularity with posting to the blog, and to provide structure to the information I provide and document for myself and for others, I've come up with a scheduling structure I intend to follow most of the time.  I won't always keep to it, as things might come up that I find too important to wait several days to post.  But for the most part, the schedule will be followed, otherwise what is the point of having a schedule.

So, here is what it looks like:
  • Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays are mandatory posting days.  I intend to write a minimum of 3 posts a week, and these are the days they will occur.
    • Mondays will be days that I write blog or life updates, like this one or my post about what's new since moving to Portland last Monday.  These may not always be very long, but they'll be regular.  They could even just consist of a few pictures from my garden.  Basically, they'll be personal updates or "business" updates about the blog.
    • Wednesdays will be a Permaculture Lesson day.  Like my post last Wednesday, they'll be about some aspect of permaculture, be it the ethics or principles, or how permaculture can be applied to a certain project or design.  Think of this like a sort of practical classroom day (most of the time anyway.  I know last Wednesday and the next few are more conceptual).
    • Fridays I will post a Friday Feature.  This will be a post where I try to explore, in depth, one "piece" of a design.  So, this will include plants and as much vital information about them as I can gather.  It will also include other parts of a permaculture design, such as a humanure pile, pond, chicken coop, a pathway, or even a tool like an axe or hammer.  Basically, if something can be used in support of another element in a design, or is supported by other elements of a design, it is possible it could be a Friday Feature.
  • Tuesday, Thursday, and Weekend days will be optional.  I may find myself posting more frequently on Tuesday and Thursday, but I intend to leave most of my (and your) weekends free from an update.
    • Tuesdays will be a book related day.  If I'm in the middle of a permaculture book and feel like sharing my thoughts on it or doing a review, they'll fall on Tuesdays.  Also, if something in a book sparks an idea for me, I'll use Tuesdays to thresh out those ideas into a more solid and understandable form.  If Wednesdays are a "Practical Classroom" day, Tuesdays are "Conceptual Classroom."
    • Thursdays will be either a free-form brainstorm day, or a kind of "vision" day.  If I get some kind of wild idea into my head that doesn't really fit into the other categories, I'll likely post it Thursdays.  These ideas may not be that good, or they could be categorically brilliant.  I reserve the right to say crazy things this day that might totally suck.  I believe that if we are to save the world from disaster, we need innovation, and innovation that comes from a frame of mind that does not fear failure.  Thursdays will likely be days mixed with failures and successes as far as ideas go.  As far as the "vision" posts go, they'll be like the post from last Thursday, where I outline some of my higher-level thoughts for my homestead or some aspect thereof.
    • As far as weekend days, Sundays will be my "Editorial" day.  I mentioned a couple posts ago that I was starting to feel the need to post about politics.  If and when that urge hits me, I'll post them on Sunday.  Saturdays are unlikely to have many posts, as they are for things that don't fit into anything else.  If I knew what they might be, I'd invent a category for them... but as of now I cannot imagine what I'd write about that doesn't fall into one of the other categories.  Also, if one of the posts from earlier gets WAY too long but I feel like it wouldn't make sense to post part 2 a full week later, I may do a continuation of an earlier post on a Saturday.
So, with all that listed out, I can now be held accountable.  Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays will all be mandatory for me.  Other posts will fall into place as described above.  If you have any ideas for what you'd like to see on any given day, please let me know.  I'd especially love ideas for the Friday Features.  I believe that without reader suggestions, it could be easy for me to fall into a pattern of writing about plants that do well in the PNW, or items I personally use or want to use.  With reader suggestions, I'll learn about things that I didn't even know existed, and I'll be able to teach myself about them by trying to teach others.

Thanks for reading!

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