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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Year of Plenty

Best Advice About Blogging and Life

When I updated the banner on the mother ship blog I put together a new page explaining all the pictures and the meaning behind them. In the process I wrote up a little paragraph about my approach to blogging that touches on some great advice about writing and life. Thought I would post it here as well.

Anne Lamott in her book "Bird by Bird" tells writers that one of the keys to writing is short assignments and small picture frames. Instead of setting out on some grand scheme to write the next Brothers Karamazov, the thing to do is just pick one short assignment, one picture that fits into a small one inch frame, and go to work writing about it, describing it, fleshing it out. She quotes E.L. Doctorow who said, "writing a novel is like driving a car at night. You can see only as far as your headlights but you can make the whole trip that way." I agree with her that "this is right up there with the best advice about writing, or life." This blog is what I'm seeing one small picture frame at a time. I'm not altogether sure where it's going but I know as I'm faithful with the short assignments, something meaningful and worthwhile might just emerge.

Between this site and the other that shares much of the same content we're running close to 7,000 page views a month. I know there are 12 year olds with Facebook pages that get twice that much web traffic, but hey, I'm not going to let that get in the way of me cobbling together some small sense of self worth. Thanks to everyone who has me on your RSS feed or Google Reader or whatever you use to track stuff. Go here if you'd like to subscribe to the blogs feed using the tool of your choice. I've started using Twitter as well if you want to follow the blog that way. Thanks to the folks who direct regular traffic to this blog, especially Spokane Food Blog and the Spokesman Review.

Here's to small picture frames and short assignments.

Year of Plenty

The Year of Plenty blog was created by Craig Goodwin in the winter of 2008 to chronicle the experiences of his family as they sought to consume everything local, used, homegrown or homemade. That journey was a wonderful introduction to people and movements in the Spokane area who are seeking the welfare of the community through local foods, farmers markets, community gardens, sustainable transportation, and more fulfilling and just patterns of consumption. In 2009 and beyond the blog will continue to report on these relationships and practices, all through the eyes of a family with young children. Craig manages the Millwood Farmers' Market, is a Master Food Preserver and Pastor at Millwood Presbyterian Church. Craig can be reached at