Hurricane Florence Pounding The Carolinas

As I write this, Hurricane Florence is wreaking its havoc on the coastal areas of North and South Carolina as it slowly makes its way inland. Particularly hardest hit are southeastern North Carolina and northeastern South Carolina. Florence is tracking westward and if the forecasted track holds true, Tropical Storm Florence will be sitting on top of me here in the Midlands of South Carolina tomorrow evening.

Of course, as it weakens to a tropical storm, the destructive force of the wind is reduced, but a tropical storm can still pack a pretty good wallop. This area is carpeted with tall pine trees that take very little wind to uproot and topple. Within the city, there are scores, if not hundreds of huge, old oaks with broad branches to catch the wind like the canvas sails of the nineteenth century Clipper ships.

And let’s not forget about the rain. As we’ve learned to fear here in Columbia, this storm could bring torrential rains and the resulting flooding that comes with them. The historic “1000 Year Flood” occurred just three years ago, so plenty of people around here remember and don’t want to relive that devastation.

What I really hope is that Florence will just quickly fade away and no one else suffers, but maybe I am asking a bit too much from Mother Nature.

Writing Again, Finally

Jim Rohn quote about lifeHere it is, nearly two thirds of the way through the year, and once again I find myself in my usual predicament of not having published anything here for months. You can’t publish what you haven’t written and I haven’t written a darned thing. It is high time to get started again – so here goes.

Once upon a time, on a dark night dreary, a blood red moon illumined the dead and the weary. No, no, no – that’s not what I meant to do. I’m not working on poetry, a novel, or a short story. This is supposed to be just a simple little post to get my writing bones greased up and working again. That’s just kind of how my brain seems to work these days – whatever random thought that’s next in line sends the messages to my fingers and whala! the words get written and I leave them like they are. Speaking of whala, I just looked it up to see if the spelling is correct, and found that the Urban Dictionary says that the word is often “used by morons in an attempt to sound more intelligent than they actually are.” Apparently, now I’m also a moron. Who wudda thunk it?

I guess this is a pretty good start. It’s short and sweet. I’ve accomplished a couple of the objectives that writers try to do but often fail miserably to accomplish – I have taught you something new and I have entertained you beyond your wildest expectations. I should charge money for you to read this.

As Arnold so famously said, “Ahllll be back!” See ya then.

Blogging Fundamentals 2018 – Assignments One Through Five

First things first – time for an update on my progress toward achieving any of my New Year’s resolutions. I published my resolutions on 6 January 2018 in this post: 2018 – Time For Some New Year’s Resolutions. It was a pretty good list, ambitious yet achievable, so I thought, and while it is still too early in the year to say I failed entirely, I can say I am not doing well to achieve a single one. But, this post marks a little more progress toward achieving some of them.

The entire focus of completing the Blogging University Blogging Fundamentals course at this time is to completely revamp this blog to have it align more with what I foresee as my writing focus for the foreseeable future – using this blog to support my need to earn more money, which is one of my published resolutions. As a retired person, all my income is fixed now, so earning more money can only result from getting another job or developing income from home-based business. I am not looking for a new job and I’m not going to look for one, so this blog is going to be one tool to help me start earning from business. Thus, the focus of my writing is going to be business related, primarily home-based business related.

Other than shifting the focus of my writing, revamping the blog also means I am completely changing how it will look. Again, this works well with completing the Blogging Fundamentals course, since the fifth assignment is to “Love Your Theme,” in other words to try several themes until I find one I like and start using it. This turned out to be pretty easy as I identified a theme several weeks ago I wanted to use, so the next several weeks will not only see a change to my content but a blog that will be changing several times as I move from my existing theme to a new one.

As I stated in the title of this post, it’s being written to accomplish the first five assignments of the Blogging Fundamentals course. I already talked about changing the theme, so in the interest of actually completing the first four assignments, here they are as assigned in the emails I received.

Day One – Publish a “who I am and why I’m here post: This is simple isn’t it? I am here to write and have people read and enjoy what I write. Actually, it never has really been simple. In my very first post on this blog, I wrote, One single thread of advice is repeated over and over in everything I have ever read or heard about writing – “just write!” Get started! Write something today, and tomorrow, and again and again. Today, that is what I am doing. That is why I was here six years ago and it is why I am here today.

Day Two – Take Control of Your Title and Tagline: It’s very easy to complete this assignment, I’m not changing anything. My title and tagline are both fine with me and they are well established so they actually have some SEO value. Again, no change needed.

Day Three – Visit the Neighbors: This is where the whole concept of a blog as a community starts to come together – visiting other blogs and developing a relationship by starting to comment on other’s works. Over the years I have done this and followed several blogs. Since I am going in a new direction now, it’s incumbent on me to find new blogs with similar interests to start engaging as my new peers.

Day Four – Identify Your Audience: This is going to be a work in progress for me over the next few weeks as I refine exactly who I am trying to reach out to with my new business focus.

Next up over the next day or two will be unveiling the new look of the blog and a couple of posts to complete the next course assignments. Hopefully within the next few weeks I’ll have this going in the general direction I want.