And so ends the first Lit Life blogging series!
I think I can call this one a success, no?
The major change that heaps of people picked up was the tone of the articles – absolutely nothing like Lit Life usually is!
In earlier drafts, I had myself in the articles – my own opinion, facts relating to my life etc – but then I took them out.
The tone was always more serious however.
I’d also like to say that the order of the posts had nothing to do with favoritism or anything – simply, it was whichever group responded first went first. I mean, I obviously couldn’t write a post with no replies!
Here is the complete run-down of the series:
As you might have noticed, that came straight from my new fab widget on the sidebar advertising the series.
And here are some random facts and tid-bits about the series and what it was like to write it:
· If you want to write a series like this, you probably shouldn’t try and organise it three days (and two being a weekend!) before you are due to start posting them. You can’t really expect people to answer that quickly (but most did so thank you!!)
· And a week after New Year’s on top of that. People are away. They won’t answer
· You really do need to look at all sides of the story to get the full picture (whoa, clichés galore there!)
· I am officially brain dead from all the research. I turned down volunteer work (but I did still honour previous commitments) and helping a friend on her website because I simply cannot digest any more information, and I needed to chain myself to the computer to finish it
· After being chained to my computer to get this done for days, it felt really weird to surface and go to the movies on Wednesday (apologises to my friend I went with as I was obsessively checking my emails the entire time)
· At some point, I just had to say enough was enough and post the damn article. Obsessing over minute details such as commas and whether I had enough quotes was only going to take me so far – and make me lose my mind!
· The exposure was definitely mounting through-out it. I had people, completely random, high-up in the literary world people, tell me they were reading it – and enjoying it! Wow!
· I went to bed at – on average – two am every night. Although I couldn’t sleep for ages after as my mind just kept ticking
· After the first publishing house knocked me back, I emailed back and grovelled for ‘any little old comment’. I got a swift reply basically saying ‘no means no’. I didn’t do that again
· I felt really, really nervous before each post went up. I was nervous as to what people would think, if I’d done a good job, if I’ve mis-quoted someone… the list went on
· I experienced all emotions while writing the series: joy, laughter, excitement, butterflies in stomach, tears
· I had a list of form questions for each group, and emailed these out accordingly. For some of the questions, it said, for example, “What are Bunnings doing to lower the prices of hard ware?” and twice I forgot to replace the ‘Bunnings’ from the old one to the new company I was emailing. Whoops!
· Once I finished a post, I sent it to my close friend Amy for an Amy-edit – she proofs, tells me when I’m rambling too much and gives general advice. She knows my weaknesses and fixed any problems. That was priceless. Amy, words are kind of useless in describing what that meant to me, and how much you mean to me in general. I love you, chick
· Believe it or not, a lot of thought went into what time I should post the series. Usually I just post whenever I write posts (or in terms of when I pre-write, a random time plucked out of thin air). But this time, it was different, and so it required thought. Amy and I discussed this in-depth before we decided that 12:30pm was a good time, as office workers would be starting to go on lunch. I also thought of those people who check their emails and blogs early in the morning (like Amy herself does) but I was then worried that they’d miss my pre-series post, which I posted on the weekend – after telling everyone I wouldn’t be posting on the weekend. So I wanted to make Monday’s post a little later than usual, around 2pm. See, a lot of thought goes into this!!!
· I can’t even begin to express how much I’ve learnt from this series. I really wish when a topic like this arises that someone, anyone, takes the time to examine it from everyone’s point of view but alas I know that isn’t feasible
· The people who came out of the woodwork answering my call-out for opinions was amazing, particularly the person who said they read my blog ‘religiously’ – COME ON!!!!
· I really grappled with naming-and-shaming the publishers who knocked me back. I once read an interview with Nicole Richie in Cleo or Cosmo, and the journalist printed the list of questions that Nicole refused to answer – that spoke volumes, more so than the questions she did answer
· In the end I decided not to name them (but I also sort of figured that people involved in this publishing world would gather who refused to answer anyway…)
· My all-purpose cure for when I got stuck: dancing like a maniac around my bedroom, singing loudly
· I think most of all, I’ve learnt it doesn’t hurt to ask. You’re going to get knocked back, and sometimes it won’t be personal. And, you know, that’s all about being a journalist – asking questions people don’t want to answer
· And as for the immediate future, I’m going to write blog posts that don’t require me to think so much!!!
And so, this is the part where you all tell me how you liked the series.