Random Thoughts on Day 30 of a 30 Hubs in 30 Days Hub Challenge
An Open Letter to the HubPages Community
Dear fellow writers in Hubsville,
It's Day 30 of the 30 Hubs in 30 Days Hub Challenge hosted by Karen Hellier. With roughly an hour and twenty minutes left before the deadline and 8 hubs yet to go, it's time for my concession speech. I'm hoisting the little white hankie up the proverbial flag pole, my tail tucked between my legs, as I limp on over to the side of the road.
The hare with big dreams and squandered opportunities by way of silly distractions, poor choices, and skeletal planning is tired of watching the backside of the tortoise.
This was a huge fail.
All is not lost. There are always valuable lessons to be learned. This is the process by which failures are seen in a different light. Not as shipwreck disasters but, rather, as incremental steps of progress towards eventual success.
With a rejuvenated spirit of let's make lemonade out of these lemons, I'd like to share with you more of my random thoughts on Day 30 of the 30 Hubs in 30 Days Hub Challenge.
The Next Time Around
The next time I tackle the 30 Hubs Challenge may very well be on my own. With malice towards none, maybe I'm the sort of writer who agonizes over deadlines imposed by other entities, whether corporate or individual.
Don't get me wrong. I love the team I had for this initial attempt at boosting my inventory of hub caps. You couldn't ask for a better leader than Karen Hellier. You couldn't ask for a more personable and supportive teammate than wetnosedogs. Come October (if I'm still on HubPages), this is the team I'll make like Audie Murphy and go to hell and back with.
No, what I'm considering is challenging myself, a la billybuc, to write a hub a day for an extended period of time. No fanfare, no public announcement, no mention. No muss, no fuss, Gus!
The personal challenge. I'd be doing it just for me. Just because...
I need to know that I am capable of climbing to the pinnacle without having had to do it HubPages' Way or No Way.
As a writer, I consider it a basic tenet that if I'm to have a credible voice, I must be honest.
Even when the honesty takes the absurd form of shooting myself in the foot.
What am I talking about? Okay, I'll say it loud and clear so the writer wearing the plaid shirt in the back of the auditorium whose eyeballs are rolling because he stayed up too late last night watching Jimmy Fallon can hear me.
HubPages, the following is for you.
Did I see an increase in traffic to my hubs? Nothing out of the ordinary...or, rather, my ordinary.
Did I see a rise in my earnings? What!?! Are you kidding me?
Did I get more followers? No more than in an average month.
So, why, then, do the challenge?
With apologies to George Mallory, Because it's there!
Where I Write
Here Are the Things I'll Change
I know I have been mentioning Bill Holland or billybuc several times in the past few months, but in keeping things real, folks, I have learned more from this talented, ambitious, and, yes! published writing guru than all the English classes, textbooks, teachers, and professors I have known in my life.
He's been known to crank out a hub a day for well nigh the last century or so. People from all over the globe--from his hometown of Olympia where the fermenting beer of nearby Tumwater commands greater respect than the politicians twiddling their thumbs in the Washington state capital...you know, that town with the Big O--to the capitol dome of that other Washington to the crowded streets of Mumbai (Oh, look! There's Rajan Jolly!) to the sparsely inhabited expanse of Antarctica to the meandering serpentine sweep of The Great Wall--are talking about our HOW protagonist.
And I'm busy listening. Studying. Analyzing. Tweaking what I see working for him into what I believe can work for me.
Bill makes it all look so easy. But it's in his sound planning ahead of time that he saves precious hours during the week. Monday is his busiest day. Why? Well, for one very good reason, I do believe that this is when Bill will crank out all five to seven hubs (the number varies depending on how anal Bill is feeling on the first day of the work week AND whether or not he's taking his lovely wife to a movie on Sunday). Point being, folks, there is a method to Bill's madness.
So what I draw from this is that I need to have a plan.
Here's what I'm thinking:
- By Sunday of each week, I will have written on my notebook seven specific topics that I will write hubs about
- I will seed the titles by starting each of the seven hubs and then saving the resulting hub sprouts
- On Monday, I will finish the first hub
- Then, I'll add a little bit to Tuesday's hub
- If I'm feeling energetic, I'll also add a little something to the other designated day hubs, ad infinitum
- Each day of the week will feature a different niche--Monday will be about Family; Tuesday will be about eBay; Wednesday will be about coffee shops, and so forth.
- I will put my walking and my eBay work ahead of my writing for HubPages
NOTE: I made the mistake in June of relegating my walking and my livelihood on eBay to the back of the bus so that I could start the day off writing. Big mistake! I found myself floundering. On the contrary, whenever I would amble around the countryside for a few miles, the exercise facilitated my writing in terms of clarity and content.
- I will not go to bed each evening until I've kicked one hub out of the nest and begun bottle-feeding the next infant hub.
Bare bones minimum.
Turning failures into stepping stones for those baby steps.