Find out what Amanda Coleman learned by blogging every day for a year

Find out what Amanda Coleman learned by blogging every day for a year

A commitment to writing daily is a good response to writer’s block. Amanda Coleman has been blogging almost every day in 2016.

By Amanda Coleman

Around 12 months ago I wanted to put myself to the test in 2016 and challenged myself to reconnect with my writing.

I started my working life as a journalist and more than 20 years on words are still really important to me. But as a professional communicator I don’t get the chance to write in the way I used to, so the challenge was to blog every day this year.

I have been blogging since 2010 and it has been a great way to discuss ideas, events and develop my thoughts about work and life. There has always been a lot to talk about and discuss but would I be able to find something every day?

Surprisingly after writing more than 300 blogs finding subject matter has not been a problem. It may be that I am more opinionated than I thought, or I like to question and challenge what I see. I now find myself identifying what will be the blog as my day progresses.

Barriers to writing

The challenges I have faced are my own physical frailties and battling through migraines to write.

I have also had a few IT glitches mainly caused by failing Wi-Fi. Blogging is surprisingly easy as I can access my blog through laptop, iPad and iPhone.

I have blogged from Rome, from trains, from London, from my car but mainly from my sofa at home.

Lessons from a blog a day: discipline and development

The challenge is nearly complete and it has taught me a huge amount.

I have learnt that I can have the discipline to do something every day. For many years I have toyed with the ideas for a few books but have lacked the control to sit down every day and write. There are always other things that need to be done or that I want to do.

Now I can feel 2017 is the year for one of those books to finally take shape.

I have found no shortage of subject matter. It may be that 2016 has been a year of turbulence and dramatic events but has also been a year of change and development for me personally.

My blogging has helped me feel more connected to my thoughts. It has also helped my mum to know my mood on a daily basis. She claims to be able to work out how I am feeling from what I have discussed and how I have written it.

I feel the challenge has reconnected me with my younger self. For as long as I can remember I have loved writing whether it was poems and a TV play when I was at school through to the daily churn as a journalist. I still have the love and passion for writing.

Creating connections and a wider conversation

Above all the past 12 month’s blogging has been hugely enjoyable.

The blogs have sparked discussion, linked me to people I would never have met before and have been viewed more than 10,000 times.

When I write the final blog for 2016 on 31 December I will be delighted to have achieved the challenge I set but a little sad that it is over.

Will I blog on 1 January 2017? I probably will, but then my attention will turn to the next writing challenge.

About Amanda Coleman

Amanda is a communication professional working in the public sector and continuing to look for new ways to start conversations.  You can connect with Amanda via her blog or Twitter @amandacomms.

How a Nottinghamshire fire crew use social media for public engagement

How a Nottinghamshire fire crew use social media for public engagement

Foodbanks tell their own story of poverty in modern Britain

Foodbanks tell their own story of poverty in modern Britain