I’m Still Alive and Well

Get the word out!

My life is a work in progress. I felt pained that I wasn’t able to really knock it out with blogging the last few months after I launched back in July 2013.

I’ve had many experiences since then. Today, I felt I have to simply open my blog and start typing. Here goes, even though it may sound a little rambly.

In October, I hopped aboard a challenge with Kimanzi Constable, a prolific blogger from Wisconsin, to conquer 200 miles on foot in October. I wasn’t part of the original group and by the time I was on board I had only 24 days remaining. I never ran regularly in my life but I thought this would hold my feet to the fire to get it done. I accomplished it! But it took over 36 miles on the last day to pull it off. Some of it was through the rain with an umbrella.

I was hoping to blog about it but it didn’t work out. There were multiple things I learned.

I had pushed myself so much that I experienced excruciating pain in my calves starting about ten days after I finished. It lasted for about a week or two.

In November I joined Jeff Goins’ Tribe Writers course.

I’m on board with Jeff Goins and My 500 Words Facebook Group. A commitment that over 1,600 people have made to write at least 500 words every day in January 2014. What an exciting journey that has been.

In December I had the privilege of a guest post on Dan Erickson’s blog. Thanks, Dan.

I just finished listening to Malcom Gladwell’s David and Goliath via audible.com. After being exposed to Gladwell’s researching and writing style anew I was encouraged in my own style. I acquired hope through it that it’s OK to produce art the way that is most comfortable for me, not what I see others doing.

I started reading the pre-release review copy of Refuse to Drown, Written by Tim Kreider with Shawn Smucker. In the past year I have come to really appreciate the work of Shawn Smucker. He helped his aunt, the one and only Auntie Anne, write her story, Twist of Faith. Other titles he wrote or co-wrote, include Dying Out Loud, How to Use a Runaway Truck Ramp, Building a Life out of Words.

I’m hoping to see Mr. Smucker next month at a book launch event in Pennsylvania.


  • http://kimanziconstable.com/ kimanzi constable

    Great year brother and really digging the blog! Thanks for joining the challenge, it hurt but was fun :)

    • http://storiesmadepowerful.com/ Arlen Miller

      Mr. Kimanzi, Thanks so much for your visit and your encouragement. I appreciate ya, man.

  • http://thoughthouse.org/ Micah

    Wow. Arlen you know how to keep busy. So many questions. How are the calves now? Are you enjoying the Tribe Writers course (I love Jeff Goins’ blog)? What was the David & Goliath book like (I’m a big Gladwell fan but I keep hearing mixed reviews about his latest work)? And how was it writing 500 words a day (I need to get more disciplined myself)?

    • http://storiesmadepowerful.com/ Arlen Miller

      Hey, I missed this comment. Thanks for your visit and comment, Micah. I had a few challenges with the calves, but they got over the stress eventually. I want to involve more in the TW course than I have. I also like Gladwell’s work very much. However, I thought the David and Goliath book didn’t really resolve. But I think it may have been intentional, not sure. There are a lot of great observations but I thought it didn’t really conclude those observations. The 500 words a day was great. Writing daily is a great discipline to improve. Again, very good to hear from you, Sir.