August 22, 2011

How Blogging Changed My Writing Life by Brenda Leyland

"You will never change your life until
you change something you do daily."
John C. Maxwell

The day I made the decision to create my own blog...the day I published my first post...the day I set myself a challenge to write 100 posts in 100 days, that's when my writing life turned the corner for me. It was a turn for the better. For up until that time, although I knew He was drawing me to write further afield, I was still mostly 'aspiring' to write. Oh, I had submitted small pieces for our church bulletin, and I wrote and published a monthly newsletter for clients in the beauty industry. But dozens of drafts for potential articles plus several in-progress books in binders never got completed and never got read by anyone else.

But it all changed when I created a place to write online on my blog at It's A Beautiful Life. Setting myself the challenge to post 100 posts in 100 days unglued something for me. At the time I didn't know how or why I felt caught, I just knew something was holding me in a space from which I needed to be set free. (Fear will do that to us.) Blogging these past three years changed that for me. Here's how:

1. It gave me a clear purpose. I now had a vision of what I wanted to write about, and it was on a theme that engaged my whole heart.

2. The commitment, although daily, was not overwhelming. My posts on average were just a few paragraphs; I knew I could do it. And my initial goal wasn't too lofty or lengthy—a 100 posts in 100 days. Large enough to stretch, but not so long a commitment as to scare my skittish writer off into the hinterland.

4. It gave me an audience quickly. I had immediate feedback and connection with my readers. I didn't have to wait for weeks, months or years to have someone read my pieces. First, it was family and friends who left comments. Then, to my great surprise, not to mention relief, I had a small but growing audience visit. Readers were coming to read my next post, I couldn't let them down. And I loved the comments people left—so encouraging for a writer whose love language are words of affirmation.

6. I felt 'at home' in the blog world. The conversational, informal style of blog posts, as it turns out, is perfect for the way I like to write, as if I'm catching up with friends in a letter or email. And, as for leaving affirming comments on other people's blogs, well that too was right up my alley. It felt like I was writing them a note to drop in the mail. Blogging is so much fun for me that it has given me the motivation to write more, which in turn has renewed my desire and commitment to get on with what He once confirmed to me... "to lay down my knitting needles and pick up a pen."

Through blogging, and definitely by His grace, I am becoming more disciplined and focused about taking the words He's given me to bring life, light, and beauty to my world.

Brenda is an InScribe member and writes regularly on her personal life blog It's A Beautiful Life.


  1. Way to go, Brenda! Now I just have to head over to your blog!

  2. Thanks for sharing part of your writing journey, Brenda. Blogging has helped me write more consistently as well. At this stage of my life, I don't have a lot of time to commit to writing. However, blogging keeps me contributing regularly and challenges me.

  3. In the book, One thousand Gifts, Ann Voskamp writes, "I'm blessed.I can bless.Imagine! I could let Him make me the gift."(pg 193)
    That's what you did Brenda. When were blessed by posting your blogs, you blessed writers like me to learn the craft of blogging and being blessed by it. If not for your help I don't think I would have delved into blogging. Thank you for your help and encouragement.

  4. Ruth, I like what you added about blogging... it challenges. I agree. Because I'm always wanting to learn new skills not only in the area of writing but of blogging, eg. design, techie stuff, and gathering readers.

    Precious Moments,.... now you're blessing me back with your kind comments! The 'gift' goes on and on!

  5. Eileen, how lovely to see you here! Thanks for stopping by!

    Majid, I've visited your blog... and left a comment on your positive thoughts posting! Blessings!

  6. Brenda - I was nodding along with this post. I started blogging for similar reasons and had similar results. Now, I've come to realize that I like the "immediacy" of blogging. I write, I publish... but if I submit to other markets (or start on a novel), I have to be much more patient to see the results of my work. :)

  7. I for one am glad you did what that woman said!

  8. I was just reading Eleanor Bertin's blog and checked back on this wonderful blog that you had linked. I read this some time ago, but it spoke to me all over again. Well said. I have been thinking of you, but my time is limited as we many things have been happening in our lives. I trust all is well with you. I'll be in touch when things settle down a bit. Blessings.


Thank you for taking the time to join in the conversation. Our writers appreciate receiving your feedback on posts you have found helpful or meaningful in some way.