July is Blogger Appreciation Month (on my blog)!

I've been reading blogs for a long time and blogging consistently for hardly any time at all, relatively speaking. As I've been blogging more often I've found two things:1. The more I blog, the easier it is to blog - ideas come more readily and posts are written more easily when less time passes between posts. (This is not dissimilar to what I've found writing short plays for Too Much Light . . .) 2. I frequently have the impulse to employ the styles and devices of my favorite bloggers. Generally I resist this impulse - those ladies (they all happen to be ladies) have worked hard to establish their voices and grow their audiences and success, who am I to come along and pluck up their gems for my own gain? - BUT for the month of July I'm going to go the other way.

They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. This month, I'll be highlighting my favorite blogs - and the ones which have the greatest influence on my own style - both by pointing you to some favorite posts and by creating my own posts in homage to each blogger.

Leave a comment and let me know which are YOUR favorite and/or most influential blogs!*

*See what I did there with the "leave a comment" thing? Tons of other bloggers do that all the time which, in turn, makes me feel self-conscious doing it myself. But I really do want to know what you think! So I'm claiming "leave a comment" as my own from now on. :)

Rambling back . . .

It all started with the interview for the really cool job that I very-nearly-but-then-didn't get.  I was asked if I blog.  I do, I told them, but not much.  I explained that there are *so many* blogs out there, I feel some sense of obligation to *contribute* something if I'm going to blog.  I'd like my blog to be a value-add, not just more of the same.  

It's a tall order, especially when the blogosphere seems already saturated with every possible blog-type, blog-entry, blog-opinion under the sun. 

It occurred to me that maybe I need to lower the bar a bit for what it means to "contribute" or "add value."

I remembered the thing (is it John Cage's thing?) about how you can't create and judge your creation at the same time.

I thought about the blogs that I enjoy reading, mostly written by ladies not unlike myself, and considered that what I enjoy are the writers' voices and then fun little things they bring to me - ideas, photos, gadgets, goofy websites.  And I remembered that a decision to blog is not a decision to rise to blog-fame and meet their levels of blog-success.

I thought about how, to act, I need someone else's permission or stamp of approval: I need to be auditioned and cast.  But to write, I need only write. 

I looked around and noticed that my life is mine to make, shape, create.  I noticed that I'm privileged to have a computer, a home, electricity, enough food and free time to be able to blog.

I realized that my baby has been napping for a while now so maybe I'd better hop to it before he wakes up and I miss my chance.

And I noticed how good it feels to say what I have to say - however big or small or serious or silly - instead of keeping it to myself.

I'm not a fan of "oh I've been away from my blog so long, I promise to write more regularly."  That's not what this is.  This is more of an out loud hope to myself that I make more use of this space for my own pleasure and benefit.