I mentioned in an earlier post (https://polywogg.ca/new-featured-images-headers-website-posts-and-computers/) that I was upgrading my setup on my website for graphics, and I’ve already covered posts related to astronomy, my website and computers, and governance (governance, international development, civil service, a conference and my HR Guide). For my website posts, I used to frequently use an image of a frog typing:
I decided during this update that I wanted to re-purpose that image to just be about writing, so I found other images for my website/blogging options.
But even with that re-purposing, and saving it for writing, I’m left with a second question. Do I use it for MY writing, i.e., my fiction? Or do it use it when I’m writing about the craft of writing? Or both?
I confess up until recently, a lot of categories related to my writing have tended to blend together. For example, while I have 52 posts that are in the “writing” category, only five of them are ONLY in the writing category; the other 47 are cross-posted with publishing, family, even weight-loss. Which is a bit of a question mark for me…if I decide to write about a topic on my blog, isn’t it ALL writing?
When it comes to family, I have written eulogies for my father and mother, and a wedding speech for my own wedding. Back in university, I did a skit nite for stand-up style comedy, and my weekend update sketch is on my site. Those are quite different from most of my posts, and I would say are samples of my “writing”. They cross-post, sure, but they are not posts — they are stand-alone writing projects. I’m also working on a novel that I started back in November … it clearly is NOT a “post”. So I have filed it with my writing category. And for me, I think that is the main defining criteria. When I’m writing something as a project, even though I’m posting it, it is “writing”. Anything else is, well, not “writing”.
Yet in that category, I also have a bunch of posts about the technical side of writing. Mostly articles I’ve read, or reviews of classes / books about writing. And when I think of those, it is almost like post-writing, near “editing”, or pre-writing, generic techniques. None of those phrases lend themselves to an obvious image. Editing perhaps could have a red pen marking up text, but that’s hard to show in a small graphic. I found an image of an editor sitting on a throne, or a pile of manuscripts, but those are a particular type of tone. I found one of a pencil over a marked up page, but the look wasn’t appealing, and the dimensions were wrong. I considered one of a typewriter (old school), one of a kid writing at a desk (wrong tone, wrong dimensions), and one of a pencil on blue sheet of paper (nice colours, nothing communicative).
After eliminating those, I’m down to three options. The first is a piece of text with a magnifying glass and a pencil hovering above it. It has an “editing” / “technique” vibe to it, I guess, but the image itself doesn’t resonate with me. The second is an orange piece of paper (visually appealing), with a burgundy ballpoint pen to the side. I like it, it’s decent. And the third one is a red square that looks almost like a button. With a red pencil above it writing on a piece of paper within the square. It isn’t as communicative as the orange paper with a pen, but it “pops” as a featured image. Plus I feel like the red signifies “editing” somehow. Either will work, but I’m going with the red one.
There is one other category with a similar bent to it, and for lack of a better term for the category, I labelled it “publishing”. If the writing technique comes first, and my writing comes second, then the business of getting those words into the world comes next. I could try to do something more with sales and bookstores, but that presupposes a stage that is separate from publishing. If I went the ebook world, those are likely more tightly tied together, particularly if my main sales venue were to be Amazon. As with governance, I created my own symbol. A four-quadrant circle and stuck different “avenues” or “models” of publishing in the quadrants.
With the decision to wrap these all together in the “writing” category, I’ve even decided to delete the publishing category all together. In the end, it comes down to “writing technique”, “my writing”, and the “business of writing”.
Another category complete!