Recently, I’ve been feeling a little discouraged about my writing. I’m not going to lie, English isn’t really my strongest suit. It’s funny because, in high school, I struggled a lot in my English classes. It wasn’t until my first year in college when I was getting A’s on my writing assignments. I assumed that my professors didn’t read them.
My Writing Skills
In early 2016, I told a friend that I wanted to start a blog but felt like it wasn’t something I was able to do because of my English. I knew grammar was an issue, and also being consistent with tenses – like past, present, and future. My friend looked at me with a face that screamed, “are you serious?” – he said, “Isn’t that what life’s about? No one’s perfect and you learn from trial and error. Read anyone’s blog and I bet you that their grammar isn’t perfect either.” He was right.
When I started my blog, I was very meticulous with my writing. I took a lot of time to think, draft, and proofread. People started noticing my blog and told me that my writing is very eloquent. Somewhere along the way, I kind of got arrogant.
As a result of that, I stopped planning, thinking, drafting, and proofreading.
POOF. My writing turned into me spitting words at my keyboard and hoping that it somehow connected. I would give Tyler drafts of my blog posts to proofread and he would literally look at me like I’m crazy.
This was an issue. It wasn’t hurting only my blog but also at work. I know I could do better, but I needed to slow down and breathe for a second. The first thing that popped into my mind about solving this issue was to read. I wasn’t interested in reading some fiction books, like the Twilight series – I think that was the last time I read something from front to end. Most of the time, I will skim over things and read the first and last sentences of each paragraph and call it a day.
While I was on Amazon looking at books to buy, they were all so expensive and I couldn’t justify buying a book if I’m not sure I will like it. Additionally, there were probably 10 books I wanted to buy too! Then I remembered, ding ding the public library!
My Trip to the Phoenix Public Library
It’s been a while since I’ve been to a public library. I’ve studied at the ASU library all the time, but never to check out books. I had totally forgotten about public libraries. My mom would take me and my sister to the library all the time growing up. We would go on the weekdays after school to do homework and on the weekends to read and play at the library.
The library has so many amazing resources, like online tutoring, homework help, etc. My mom spoke limited English so getting homework help through the library was helpful. The public library we went to growing up in Tucson had an Anime club too. You can find those through the library’s event calendar. Those were interesting, haha.
Anyway, back to the books. All of the books I checked out are geared towards blogging and marketing – which are areas that I’m trying to improve on. I wanted to share the books I’ll be reading for the next couple of days.
- Everybody Writes by Ann Handley
- The Golden Rules of Blogging by Robin Houghton
- Marketing by Brian Tracy
- The Essential Social Media Marketing Handbook by Gail Z. Martin
- Blogging for Dummies 7th Edition by Amy Lupold Bair
- Technical Blogging: Amplify Your Influence by Antonio Cangiano
- The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding by Al Ries and Laura Ries
I highly recommend checking out your public library. You can reserve books online and do curbside pick-up.