Thursday, April 16, 2015

Blogging from A to Z: L is for "Life Afloat"

During April, I'm participating in the Blogging from A to Z challenge -- one alphabet-themed post per day, starting with A is for Aruba Aftermath and ending with Z is for ... I don't know yet what Z is for, I'll figure it out when I get there.

(image from here)

I've been writing for so long about life afloat (the concept and the practicalities of the lifestyle), but I've never written about the process of writing a blog and how it has affected me.  This blog started as a way to maintain backup copies of posts I wrote for lifestyle blog for the Annapolis Capital newspaper, back in 2008, then continued in its own right in 2012 when I no longer lived in Annapolis.  I've accumulated over 300 posts here, about various aspects of living on a boat, living small, the aquatic environment, boating politics, Annapolis-specific items, and whatever else, relevant or not, struck my fancy.

At first I was awkward and clumsy and self-conscious.  I've seriously considered hiding or deleting some of those early posts, as I found my way.  I was conscious of my mission for the paper, and simultaneously conscious that I was brand new at this, and except for a single email including blogging guidelines and the newspaper's policies, untrained.    I knew that in order to be interesting, I had to be able to tell personal stories and be vulnerable, the exact opposite of my training in scientific, government, and contract writing.  At the same time, I couldn't really let people too far into my life; anything I wrote was going into a very public forum with very little safety net. It seemed incredibly arrogant to believe anyone would care about my ramblings or so-called "insights."  It was freakin' scary.

Now, though, I wouldn't trade it for anything.  The structure of writing regularly is good for me.  And looking back, I find that writing really does help me remember things that happened in our travels that were important to me, and helped (forced?) me to process my thoughts about them.  Most of all, though, is the connections the writing has helped me make and maintain.  The first time fellow cruisers bought me lunch just because they had been reading my stories in the paper and wanted to thank me for the entertainment was incredibly special (thank you, T.W.).  So was learning that my dental hygienist was an avid follower.  Most of all, the fellow cruisers who have become friends, even if we've never met other than as streams of electrons.

This seems like a logical place to link my top 10 favorite posts of the blog from those first few years.
(in no particular order)

Electric Tools, Antique Tools
Sail the Wind You Have (and other life lessons from our trip)
Mayday, Mayday, Mayday
Wind! (Gimme Shelter!)
Two Cays at the Park
Galley Musings
Life Lessons Learned from the Weather Report
What Was THAT??!!!
and my very first post, Getting Started


  1. Wow that is spooky - best of posts from both of us today!