Sunday, January 01, 2006

Blogging in 2006

This being both New Year's Day & my 1-year blogiversary, time to assess

My goals for the blog in 2006 are modest, pretty much unchanged from when I started it a year ago: write about things that interest me, clarifying what I think through what I write, and hopefully finding a few folks out there who like what they hear, all with the ultimate goal of moving Christ to the center of my life in all things.

By Blogger's count, I had 112 posts on this blog, plus 2 more on my buddy Hemsch's creative blog (I hope to put a few more things on there this year, mainly about writing). I should probably blog less, but I'd like to blog more, so I'll probably blog about the same. My big problem is that I am S-L-O-W when it comes to writing.

A quick word on just a few of the many great people I've met this year.

Centuri0n: Cent has become a great friend. His writing challenges me. We have kids that are similar ages. And it probably doesn't hurt that he lives just 3 1/2 hours away, in a place that holds fond memories (my wife & I met and graduated from college there); it's also one of the most beautiful places in the United States.

Phil Johnson: Here is a man whose writing & preaching I appreciate so very much. He eschews both academic sophistry and anti-intellectualism, and as a result appeals to those who think and care about the truth but are mostly ignored by academics (those with initials behind their names). I hope he decides to stick with the blogging thing, because I always look forward to reading him.

Carla Rolfe: Her comments on Pyromaniac (& her fabulous pictures) drew me initially to her blog. What keeps me coming back is her love for truth & her transparency. When I read her stuff, I'm reminded of Paul's letters to the Corinthians--his concern for their forays into sin and their intensely personal nature. I suppose her love for commas makes her writing like Paul's as well (though it's easier for him to get away with writing long sentences in Greek than her in English).

Kim Shay: If Carla can be compared to Paul, then Kim must be Barnabas. And she is. A true encourager. (If you add only one person to your regular readership this year, make sure it's Kim. She will read & post comments regularly.) Her blog is a potpourri of upbeat posts, and the comment section is filled with a neat community of people. She and hubby Bugblaster are also shameless flirts--sort of a Canadian Nick & Nora Charles. They are a wonderful example of what a marriage should be, and a good antidote to what the world thinks marriage is.

(As an aside, I can't believe how much good blogging is coming out of Canada. Two of those above, the last couple of people I've featured on my blog, plus the amazing Daniel @ Doulogos, are all from Canada. I hope that admitting this doesn't make me the quintessential "ugly American.")

Finally, to all who have read and/or linked to me, a big thank you. With few exceptions, I didn't even know you before I started blogging (and very few of those who know me in the real world read me anyway). Someone I read recently advised focusing efforts on making friends offline; that's probably good advice, but it ignores the benefits of this particular medium: you can read & interact with people from literally all over the world--people that you might never have a chance to meet in real time. Don't try to tell me that's not real friendship, especially when you spend that time talking about the Savior.

BTW, everywhere in the writing world I see the advice that you have to know your audience. If I had to add one thing to my list of goals for 2006, it would be to get to know my readers better. Feel free to drop me a comment now & then, and I will try to do the same for you.


Carla said...

Matt! What an honor that you might include me in such company. Your kind words really blessed me tonight, as well.

Now what in tarnation is this thing you people have with my long sentences, frequent comma usage, and all of that jazz? I just don't get it.

For the record, I am not Canadian - I just live hear and drink Tim Horton's coffee like one.

I do appreciate you not telling your 80 zillion readers that the first real conversation we had was one where I asked you if you were related to Judy Garland. Such an incredibly lame question, not sure who would be so silly as to actually ask you that.

It's been a pleasure discovering and reading your blog this past year, and I look forward to more in 2006.

Happy New Year Matt!

The Comma Princess

Kim said...

Well, I'm kind of speechless. Thank you for saying such kind things. I've never thought of myself as an encourager. I usually feel like I'm the one in need of encouragement.

I'm happy God directed me to your blog!

God's best to you and all the little Gumms this year!

BugBlaster said...

Matt, For your part, thanks for encouraging Kim. I know that she REALLY appreciates it.

Carla, you only had four commas in your comment. You are making good progress.

Carla said...

Oh boy. I was thinking last night just before I posted that comment "I should probably wait until tomorrow, I'm really tired right now".

Please ingore the horrid spelling & awful (worse than usual) grammar in my first reply.

Gummby said...

Carla--I've actually been working on this post for over a week. In one of my drafts, I wrote "Too many commas?" Isn't that like "too much chocolate?" Can't happen! I prefer semi-colons myself; it's kind of like making run-on sentences legal.

I was actually impressed by the Gumm reference--most people don't know that about Judy. And as I mentioned before, I am asked that fairly frequently.

I kind of pieced together what you said above, although I didn't know the details. But I consider you an honorary Canadian, just like Frank and I are honorary Arkies.

Kim & Buggy--I love reading you guys. It makes me wish I could get my wife online, so that we could that. Have you ever seen any Thin Man movies? If not, you must see one. They are a hoot.

Daniel said...

Amazing? My head is nigh swollen already my friend - thankfully my wife was in the room when I read that so she could keep me grounded (you know, with one of the whole sentances spoken in just one breath sound: "Pfffft") ;-D

If it makes you feel better Matt, I thought Carla was a Canuck too, (comma use aside of course).

Jim said...

Daniel was my catalyst into the Blogosphere. The more I read his posts, the more I am amazed I actually decided to begin a blog. He's a real apologist in the making.