This is my 45th blog for Ladies of Mystery. I started writing at this site in September, 2019, and I’m proud to say I haven’t duplicated a topic, not once. That’s a lot of blogs, and when I realized how many I’d written, I was surprised and took some time to reflect on this. Is it really possible to blog every month and avoid duplication? Why yes, it is.
Think about it. There’s a huge world out there, with infinite possibilities for observation and discourse. You can write about the seasons, or the place in which you live. You can write about writing, the writing process, your latest releases, the struggles, and challenges, of creating a book or a chapter or the characters in your books. About marketing and promoting. You can write about family and friends and animals. Music. A special outing. It’s an endless list if you just look around and observe.
You can write about gardening, beaches, swimming or snowshoeing. Trips taken, meals eaten, beverages sampled, and cultural events you’ve attended. Wine tastings. Memorials to loved ones and pets who have passed. You can write about rain and snow and sun and wind. You can write about suffering, loss, and experiencing joy. During Covid, one of my blogs was about kindness and the many ways it manifested itself in our community; another about what it’s like to live across the street from a large lake in the middle of apple growing country.
Sometimes I whiz through whatever blog I’m writing for the month. My rough draft gets tweaked a little, and then voila, it’s ready to publish. Other times it takes a bit longer, sometimes more than a bit longer, as I search for the right word or tone or to put a semblance of order into my thoughts. It depends on the topic, and my mood, but eventually it gets done.
When I first started writing blogs here, I carefully constructed a list of the topics I wanted to write about for each month during that particular year, and I stuck to it. It helped me focus and because I was new at it, it also helped alleviate some anxiety when faced with a deadline. Then, occasionally, I would scratch the blog I planned to write for something that seemed more appropriate at that time. As I’ve become more comfortable, I typically pick my topic on a monthly basis, depending on my mood and life experiences at the time.
The books in my Edmund DeCleryk cozy mystery series typically run (give-or-take) about 70,000 words. I try to limit blogs to no more than 500, they’re easy to compose; really, no more than a page in a book. Plus, readers don’t want to spend a whole day reading a blog. And that’s why I’m stopping here. There’s more to write about, but I just checked and I’m coming up on those 500 words.
Karen Shughart is the author of the maritime-themed Edmund DeCleryk cozy mystery series that includes historical backstories with a twist, and recipes provided by the sleuth’s wife, Annie, the head of the local historical society. Book three, Murder at Freedom Hill, is an International Firebird Book Award winner in the mystery and fiction categories.
You must be logged in to post a comment.