I'm very excited that Arlee Bird will be here tomorrow to talk about blogging, getting more followers to your blog, and the great 2011 A to Z April Blog Challenge. Lee, who blogs at tossing it out, is a perfect example of what can happen when you think outside the box, come up with a great idea, and run with it. If you have a blog, you won't want to miss tomorrow's post.
Finalists and Honorable Mentions for the 4th Sort-of-Annual Stupendously Ultimate First Paragraph Challenge
Last week at Chiseled in Rock blog I mentioned Nathan Bransford's The 4th Sort-of-Annual Stupendously Ultimate First Paragraph Challenge, which I entered and encouraged others to do the same. I did not get an honorable mention, nor did I become a finalist.
BUT GUESS WHAT? One of my wonderful blogger friends, Ann Best who blogs at Long Journey Home, was one of 1,500+ entrants who did receive honorable mention. That's awesome! Congratulations to Ann.
The six finalists are posted, and you can read their entries and vote for your favorite until the deadline on Wednesday.
Super Duper Blog Post of the Week
April Moore, a member of our Raintree Writers critique group, is writing a nonfiction book about Folsom's 93, the ninety-three men executed by hanging at Folsom Prison between 1835 and 1937. The information she's accumulating for this book is fascinating.
She recently spent two weeks in California doing more research, which included a tour of Folsom Prison. This week she posted all about her trip (with photos) at her dedicated blog, Folsom's 93. "My Time in Prison" is a great post about the thrill of researching from original materials, why she toured the prison, and how much work she has to do now that she's back home. April has a wonderful sense of humor, so the post is not all dry and boring. I highly recommend it.
April also blogs at Epicurean Vegan where she posts yummy recipes. I don't think April ever eats anything without taking a picture of it first, which makes even her restaurant reviews a visual treat.
The temperature yesterday when I wrote this post was zero F with a wind chill of -13 F. The overnight low was forecast at -19 F (Lord knows what the wind chill forecast was). Needless to say, my office, which is on the second floor in the northeast corner of the house, was so cold I couldn't keep my hands warm even with numerous cups of warm tea. Even Katrina Katie Kitten rejected the room and found a sunny spot on the stairs for her afternoon nap.
I eventually gave up and found a warmer place in the house. I chose the kitchen, where I heated up the oven and baked that apple custard crisp variation on apple custard pie that I fantasized about on Facebook yesterday. Then I found a spot in the sun, just like Katie Kitten, and went blog hopping and status updating and tweeting with my little laptop.
I'm not really complaining, because I know other parts of the country are experiencing ice storms and blizzards. But no matter the weather where you are, you can't go wrong with a warm blanket (or five), a cup of hot whatever (even if you have to fire up the grill on the patio to get hot water), and a good book.