A Few Observations From an Unplanned Break from Blogging

Get the word out!

Full week

I have just come off of a loaded week directing the project of a first-time author’s first book, including coordinating the editing, and text page and cover design. Wow. What a project it has been. But it’s such a privilege helping a person with a valid message to get it out.

Because of an overloaded week I had not posted this week. The mini break has not been wasted. It’s been a time to reflect.

Since I had pulled back from posting I noticed that it’s much easier to write about something than actually take action and do it. For example, we can write about writing. Write about storytelling. Write about what it is and how to do it. But what we need is storytelling, not the dissecting thereof. (Talking to myself. :) Weighing the options. Thus I am determining where I need to go from here on this site.


I had this deal with my heart that I would write a blog post every day for a year. Jeff Goins did! He did one every day for a year then wrote 100 additional ones and it put him on the map. I listened to his story and I felt ‘I can do that.’ I didn’t want to vow to it, but I was just planning to do it.

I noticed that I need to take takeaways like that and learn from them. But they need to fit me. When the shoes fits, Arlen, wear it. But if it’s too tight, try on another one.

I felt so wrong in my heart when I missed that first day last week of not posting. But after I did it I also realized I need to make sure I have a quality message. Not just a few random words and “Publish”… just to be able to deliver on the deal of ‘one post per day.’

I believe the key thing for me is to keep moving. I notice that as I keep moving and keep doing, I get answers. I make discoveries. Then it’s another step forward.

Communicating with the world via the internet is just the most incredible medium of our day. I know we all know about it, and it’s so easy to take for granted but it is so amazing and so far out cool. We can pop a few words online and practically the whole world can read it in a matter of minutes. Sorry, that’s kinda old school. But it’s just sooo cool.

I think the online connections/relationships have also become more authentic in the last 8–10 years.

Book writing power

The author I was working with met Jonathan Cahn, author of the Harbinger and Jonathan said that if you think you have been criticized, just write a book. What he meant was that after a book is published then look out. Especially if the message is potentially controversial or when there are varying interpretations. Somehow when a communicator’s message is in print and between two covers it establishes the message in a way nothing else quite does.

The candid life of being online
Being online via blog is pretty exposing. As I write my experiences and my perspectives there is not much hiding. It seems to leak out. Somehow. Sometime.

Who someone is. What they stand for. Their worldview.

I think it is similar to being a teacher. That was something I learned when I lived in India and taught English at a Bible College. If the teacher knows or doesn’t know the subject — it can’t be hidden from the students.

How have you taken lemons and made lemonade recently? How have you taken a challenging situation and come through better? Please comment below.

  • http://billgrandi.com/ Bill (cycleguy)

    Good to hear from you Arlen. Sounds like your break was well worth it. On your question: two things. Can I get back to you? We start two worship services today. I’ll let you know how that turns out. :) Second, i am trying something totally new for me in 2014. I am calling it “The Great Adventure: A Year with Jesus.” My plan is to actually start in December with the Christmas story, but the real bulk begins in january. I am asking the people to focus on reading the Gospels this year. January=Matthew. February=Mark, etc. Repeat after April. Then, unless God sidetracks me, to preach each week from that book. Matthew in January. Mark in February. By the end of the year we will have saturated ourselves with Jesus and they will have read through each Gospel 3x and Mark possibly 6 (if they choose to read him twice a month since he has so few chapters. I’ll have to let you know sometime in 2014 how it is going or turns out. I am also thinking of journaling my thoughts and putting them into some written form.

    • http://storiesmadepowerful.com/ Arlen Miller

      All that sounds great, Mr. Bill. You have a lot going on. I would certainly love to hear from you how your changes are going for you. “Saturated ourselves with Jesus.” I love that. Thanks so much for joining us here. I appreciate it very much.

  • Elaine

    I’m sure your experience has been the same as mine, Arlen — once you get into this business, there’s tons of writing & blogging advice out there. But I believe one of the points you make above is some of the best advice: Try on shoes (learn all you can), but make sure the shoe you choose to wear fits! Even advice from the pros is not beneficial if it doesn’t move you toward your purpose and goals.

    • http://thoughthouse.org/ Micah

      I think this is so true, takes a while to discover the value in finding your own way of moving forward, and that it’s a value that benefits others as well as yourself. Really enjoyed this post.

      • http://storiesmadepowerful.com/ Arlen Miller

        That’s an encouragement, Micah. Thanks.

    • http://storiesmadepowerful.com/ Arlen Miller

      Right on, Elaine. Thanks for your input. I’m learning from you.

  • http://www.danerickson.net/ Dan Erickson

    I try to use writing to make sour things sweeter, and sweet things heavenly.

    • http://storiesmadepowerful.com/ Arlen Miller

      Way to go, Dan. That’s called making a difference. Thanks for your comment.

  • http://daniel-bachmann.com/ Daniel Bachmann

    Thank you Arlen for sharing authentic and really useful insight into finding the perfect rythm in terms of blogging! I agree that it’s really fascinating that each person can communicate with the entire world! I sincerly hope it helps to connect the world in collaborative, authentic and courageous ways!!!

    • http://storiesmadepowerful.com/ Arlen Miller

      It’s great to see you here, Mr. Daniel. Thanks so much for joining the conversation. I’d love to see your beloved Swiss land again.