Inspiring Generosity


Inspiring Generosity


2/22/2017

Blogging: The Power of the Pen
 

Embrace your inner keyboard!

True fact: peak, peek, and pique are all words that sound the same but have totally different meanings. Surprise! An astute reader from Florence, Oregon (not Italy, which totally bummed me out because I was already dreaming about my vacation at her villa) kindly pointed out the error of my spelling ways in last week’s blog post (yes, I’ve corrected it). So to all of you whose imaginations are “piqued” by what I write…hooray – and thanks for reading!
 
In that post, I highlighted (with the help of “Classy”) “10 Steps to Being an Influencer.” #7 was: “Be the Creator. Start a blog with content that will pique people’s interest.” Now you know how to spell “pique” correctly in this sentence. My work is done for the day.
 
Start a blog! Sounds easy enough! Anyone can do it!
 
But let’s pull that back just a moment – why write at all? Does anyone read anymore? Why yes, yes they do. Will anyone care what you write about? That all depends on what you’re writing about.

With the written word you can:
 
-  Cast a vision. Where will your organization or congregation be going in the next year or two?
 
-  Remind people why you exist. What is it that you are uniquely being called to do?
 
-  Keep the mission moving forward. How can you be the lead cheerleader, challenger, and encourager?
 
-  Re-read, savor, and remind yourself why you do what you do.
 
Once you’ve figured out why you’re writing…it’s time to write.
 
The word “blog” can send shivers up one’s spine or it can cause intense eye rolling. But a blog is merely a way to communicate – through the written word – in a conversational style.
 
You can have your own stand-alone blog (WordPress makes this easy) or you can use more conventional (and frankly far easier) ways to get your word out. And bonus (!) these are spots where you already have a built in audience:
 
The newsletter – a perfect opportunity to touch base with people
Email – you may decide to reach out on a regular basis or every once in awhile
Facebook – Anne Lamott has perfected this method, IMHO
 
Once you decide that you have something important to say and you decide where you’re going to say it, here are some tips to writing a post that people might want to read:
 
1. Write in a conversational tone (write to your favorite cousin, congregant, or client)
 
2. Make the paragraphs short (this isn't a college essay)
 
3. Give yourself time to write (edit, edit, edit…no stream of consciousness, please)
 
4. Bold certain key phrases (some of us have short attention spans)
 
5. Put YOU in the writing (let people get a better glimpse of who you are)
 
6. Put YOUR READER in the writing (conversely, it’s not all about you)
 
7. Have someone else read it for clarity and spelling before going to print (you’ll be glad you did…see the spelling lesson above).
 
Do you have other suggestions? Let me hear from you. What’s been your experience blogging? In fact, send me your blog!
 
People say the written word is d-e-a-d. Don’t believe it. You have a lot to say that can change hearts and minds and convey hope and courage. Let your light (and pen) shine!
Cesie Delve Scheuermann (pronounced “CC Delv Sherman,” yes, really) is a consultant in stewardship, development, and grant writing. Over the past fifteen years, while working as a volunteer and part-time consultant, she helped raise over three million dollars for numerous non-profit organizations. She’s still trying to recover from last night’s This is Us. She was the Oregon-Idaho Annual Conference Lay Leader from 2008-2012. Her position with the Conference is funded through a generous grant from the Collins Foundation. She is available to consult with churches. You can reach her at inspiringgenerosity@gmail.com or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/inspiringgenerosity.
 
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Cesie Delve Scheuermann

Cesie Delve Scheuermann is consultant in grant writing and stewardship/development working with the Conference. From 2008-12 she was the Conference Lay Leader for the Oregon-Idaho Annual Conference.

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