I’d planned to highlight my 300th blog post, but it happened before I realized it.
Very early in the process of wrestling the Wilson family WWII story into something publishable, I was shocked at all I was going to need to leave out.
The first thing was all the research I’d done. I just had to learn all I can about the brothers who were lost, and requested casualty documents, MACRs (Missing Aircraft Reports), missions reports. Joining unit reunion groups, I had access to addresses of men who served with the brothers. They were so generous with their memories, photos, and even one man sent a photocopy of his entire combat diary.
But my grandparents never knew about any of this information. Neither did Mom and her surviving siblings until I began to share it with them.
When I discovered blogging, I realized it was a way to share the stories and information I’d need to leave out of Leora’s Letters: The Story of Love and Loss for an Iowa Family During World War II. It’s her story.
Grandma Leora Wilson left us her hand-written memoirs. Between hers and Mom’s stories, I’ll be writing and blogging for a long time. Their Depression Era years (set in Dexter, Iowa) are also poignant. Every week, my Monday and Friday posts are usually about the Wilson family.
Wednesdays I’ve been sharing books that I’ve especially enjoyed, which are mostly nonfiction.
During “museum season,” a post about Dexter History shows up on Thursday, which is when I do a little “ad” to remind people that the museum is open Sunday afternoons.
According to WordPress stats, I’ve published 300 posts in 2 1/2 years. (I’d actually started with Weebly two years earlier, but it was so hard to work with.) WordPress also says I have 27 stories scheduled to post–well into November. And 68 drafts started.
My website doesn’t have that many subscribers, and even fewer who actually interact with each post, but I also share most posts across social media.
Facebook refers more people, by far, to my website than any other “search engine.” And my feedback shows up on Facebook page instead of on my website.
Meanwhile, I’ve “met” such awesome people through all of this, and I’m having such fun with it.
I’m humbled and thankful for my on-line cheerleaders in this life chapter’s new journey.
Well done, Joy. Yours are always interesting.
Websites are difficult these days. I don’t think many younger people even use them anymore, everything is reached through an app. Great idea to use Pinterest and Instagram to get your writing out there! I’ve thought about using Pinterest too… I do for things like clothing ideas and recipes but not my writing.
Pinterest was the biggest surprise, but very few followers. Have more lurkers who want to communicate on Instagram. Don’t understand that at all, but at least they’re easy to ignore (or even block)
Congratulations on reaching 300! I enjoy reading your posts.
I’m sure having fun doing them! Thanks. I should have told about the dedication Saturday of the Dallas County Freedom Rock, but I’m still so sated and exhausted from speaking (haven’t been able to any until last week since 2001), I haven’t been able to process the wonderful day. Went an hour early to connect with people, stood 1 1/2 hours afterwards listening to stories, mainly veterans’ or their daughters.
Well done Joy! You certainly ARE organised to have so many posts ready in advance. You are doing an awesome job.
Thank you, Anne. So many done ahead are for anniversaries–75th anniversary of something during WWII, since two Wilson brothers were in combat that fall. Then Thanksgiving and Christmas. If I think of something I can even have it ready with photos. Really like that aspect of WordPress.
I agree! That’s very impressive.
Congratulations on all your accomplishments, Joy. You are an inspiration.
Lump in throat. It’s such fun to be this age and jump out of bed early in the morning! (usually 4 a.m., believe it or not, before Hubs is up and the radio is on!)
I am very proud of you.
Oh, Leora, isn’t this amazing? Six months ago I could not have done this. Now I’ve done two, thoroughly enjoyed both, have two coming up next month! Those brothers are going to be remembered for a very long time!
Congratulations on the 300 posts my friend. Though I am a latecomer to your great blog I have enjoyed your words. Keep up the wonderful work.
Jerry, thanks for your encouragement! I’ve enjoyed your website as well. I think we’re both having fun at it, huh!
Congratulations on your 300th post. 🙂
Congratulation on reaching 300 – that is amazing. I loved finding your blog and following along. Looking forward to the next 300 🙂 Sharon
Sharon, you’re a dear! I’m sure having fun with it!
Well done to reach 300. The number of followers is not a good indicator of much in my opinion. I’ve seen blogs with thousands, but only a handful actually take the time to comment and interact. I always appreciate those who do. It is frustrating to put lots of time and research into a well-written post and have it sit quietly waiting.
Keep up the good work. You are obviously writing about the things and people that mean the most to you. Never lose sight of that.
I enjoy feedback here, but also on Facebook when I repost something on a history page. I figure if I’ve got those tags in the mix, they’ll eventually find those looking for certain topics, although sometimes (like Instagram) I’m amazed at how I get discovered there at all. I do use hashtags there and on Twitter. Twitter is still a puzzle.
Congrats! You are indeed a prolific writer (and reader).
Thank you, Allen. (I just savored your “A Search For Truth” this morning.) I’m so thankful for the lifting of brain fog that this has indeed been a prolific year for me. Guess something in me is trying to make up for those lost nearly-two-dozen years of fibromyalgia symptoms. Sure is delightful to be this age and I can hardly wait for 4 a.m. to arrive so I can “untie the ribbon” on the day’s beautiful gift.
Congratulations on reaching the 300 mark, Joy! I always get a lift when I see a new post of yours come across my email.
Liz, you are so encouraging! Especially when I’m having such fun working on them.
Congarats on the big 300! You inspired me to dig into local history a little more.
Thanks, Rich! Is your website problem resolved? I had such fun Saturday at the dedication–they asked me to speak! There is hope at the “end” of fibromyalgia! Instead of a book review tomorrow, my post will be about the Dallas County Freedom Rock dedication. I enjoy your local history posts as they are so different than midwest stories.
Danke Schorn. I took a Mental health First Aid course on Saturday. Very insightful. And yes, got the email issue sorted out.
Congratulations on the 300 post mark! Love your blog! 🙂
Thank you, Linda! I’m having fun with it.