Wednesday, January 1, 2014


I am a blogger.

How  pleased and proud I am to identify myself as such.
I can't believe it has been almost a year since I joined the blogging world.

After rereading my first post, Welcome to Deeper Writing (1/16/13), I  realize that blogging in now an essential part of my life.
It has become part of who I am and what I do.

Today we traditionally reflect on the year we are leaving.
And we also begin to look ahead to our plans and wonderings for the new  year.

Today I  also reflect on this past year of writing and about projected writing in this coming  year.

What have I learned in this new experience?
What important lessons will I  take into the new year regarding blogging, specifically, and writing in general?

About three months after I began blogging, I asked myself the same questions and  recorded my reflections in the post,  Lessons in the Blog.  In rereading this post, I find that these same  lessons  continue to be those I am learning and relearning.

In addition, I have learned several new lessons.

What happens if life interrupts the ability to write?

This year there have been a number of challenges that have changed my writing schedule.

I have traveled.

Vacations  always seems to encourage writing for me.
Interruptions in my routine to take in sun and beach and seafood and friend-time always  inspires writing for me.
 And likewise, retreats with precious quiet time in serene places, whether on a religious retreat or with the  Columbus Area Writing Project Summer Institute at Kenyon College-- these times always lead to profuse writing.

I learned this year, however, that professional travelling, such as to conferences and conventions, while encouraging much thinking and learning, left me with a brain so full that writing my blog just didn't happen.  I found that the writing came only after I was home and had had time to reflect, digest, and process.

Our family has had several health challenges this year, as well.  My dad has been hospitalized twice (stroke and stomach issues), he spent some time in a rehabilitation center following his stroke, and continues to need numerous doctor visits.  In addition, my mother had shingles.  

Writing in between, around and through new schedules at first seemed impossible.

Yes I have a small computer (10 inch screen that can go anywhere) . Yes I have an iPad with a Blogger app. Yes any where I am has wi-fi.  Yes my iPad has a AT& T chip so I am not ever dependent on wi-fi. Yes....

None of that seemed to matter.
Writing in between, around and through new schedules still at first seemed impossible.

However, I found myself able to write everywhere more easily once I gave myself permission to NOT write. Once I relieved myself of a rigid (self-established) publishing schedule, I found, ironically, that  I was able  most of the time to follow that same schedule--- being patient and lenient with myself on the very few times I could not.

Sometimes life takes over and writing waits.

But I also found during the times I was not physically writing, that I was still writing in my head, still planning, still constructing and creating the next post and one after that and one after...

As I look back over the posts for 2013, I was interested in which posts you liked, which ones were most read, reposted, tweeted, and googled..

Here are the top ten-- the most read posts-- since the inception of my blog:
Which was your favorite post?

Which piece of your own writing is your favorite?

What lessons have you learned this year in your writing?

What do you want to write in 2014?

As we enter 2014,  I wish you a happy new year....and happy writing!

Today's Deeper Writing Possibilities

What do you learn as you write?
Make a list of lessons you have learned from writing a particular piece of writing.
Make a second list of lessons you have learned from your collected writings.

Perhaps a poem taught you to break lines in a new way.
Perhaps an essay taught you that you could repeat phrases for emphasis or ask questions that you would not answer in the piece.
Perhaps you learned that sometimes research is necessary,  even to write about a very familiar topic.

Write an essay about your own writing and what you have learned from it.


  1. Dear Robin,
    I am so glad you joined the blogging world. I am always learning from you and you keep me thinking. :) It's amazing how freeing giving ourselves permission to stray from our own rules is. I found myself in the same situation this year...not having as much time to write (for different reasons than yours) and I, too, had to give myself permission to step away from my blog when I needed to. I ended up learning that I have other writing interests besides my classroom practices and now I'm wondering if I should start a different blog. Time will tell! I hope your parents are doing better and I'm looking forward to learning with you in 2014.

  2. Thank you, Julie, for your encouragement and kind words as I entered this new experience. You and Gretchen S. and Franki wrote me such lovely emails full of advice and support. I have enjoyed reading your Celebrate posts which veer more into your family/ daily life, just as much as your classroom posts. The blogosphere would welcome whatever you offer. Wishing you many blessings in this dawning new year.