I have a number of posts in various stages of readiness, but at the moment not a single one of them is ready for publishing. So rather than leave you with emptiness in your inbox this week, I’m sending this fun video as filler. It has nothing to do with writing, business, faith, or politics. I could not think of a way to tie it in to this blog at all!

Can you? Will you try? Post your idea in the comments below. Think of it as a creativity exercise! See if you can come up with an answer to this question:

How might this video be relevant to “helping you share your story”?

Revisiting Why (do I) blog?

why blog

why blogAlthough I first posted this blog five years ago, I believe it remains true and relevant today. If you’re still not sure what a “blog” is, this blog’s for you!

Why (do I) blog?

originally published October 20, 2010

Many of you who subscribe to this LifeLines blog are rather new to blogging. You’re not sure what “blogs” are, or why you need them, or how to engage with them. So when I saw this video in a social media class, I thought, “Cool. I want to share this with my subscribers.” (The good people at Common Craft put together this video—and they gave me permission to use it here. Check out the other “in plain English” videos they’ve created to explain a variety of topics!)

Helping you share your story

The tagline for my blog (and my business) is “helping you share your story.” Those five words are what this blog is all about. My story is that I help other people share their stories—in books, on business cards, through fundraising letters, on their own blogs or websites, however that story-telling will be most appropriate and most effective. Throughout the process, I’m both discovering and living out my part in God’s larger story.

As this little video says, there are millions of stories to share. And many of them are worth sharing! But people often need help with the sharing.

I like being in a position where I can provide that help.

What do you think? Did this little video help? Which questions did it answer for you? Which questions remain unanswered?


Words, books, and craftsmanship


Ok, this video is 10 minutes long, and it’s in Japanese, so maybe you won’t want to watch it. But putting a little time and effort into it kind of goes along with the theme of this post.

The video shows the work of an old craftsman who uses old tools to restore old books:

Craftsmanship and value

I don’t know if people really value books anymore. Maybe that’s because it’s so easy now to create books. Anyone can upload photos and order a customized coffee-table book. And independent authors cranked out nearly half a million self-published titles in 2013 (source:

Will these books last? Will they be treasured like the ones this Japanese artisan works on?

I don’t know. This video is interesting to me because it reminds me that craftsmanship and value go hand in hand. I want to put as much craftsmanship into my content as this booksmith puts into the physical containers.

Physical and digital

Most of the words I write don’t end up in printed, glued, bound books that are carried around, dog-eared and broken-spined. Some do. And some exist in physical pieces like newsletters, reports, advertisements, and mailings. I have boxes of physical archives of published, printed pieces I’m proud of.

But increasingly my words exist mainly online—as blog posts, website pages, Facebook content, email drafts. Somehow this makes my work simultaneously permanent (because things exist forever on the internet) and fleeting (because the internet is constantly changing).

Easy and difficult

It may be much easier to publish and share ideas in this digital age. What’s difficult is making sure I have ideas worth sharing. And what’s perhaps more difficult is wordsmithing those ideas with the kind of craftsmanship that ensures they will be treasured—even if they never have a physical form.


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