If we are facing in the right direction, all we have to do is keep on walking. If it takes a year, or sixty years, or five lifetimes, as long as we’re heading towards light, that’s all that matters.
– Jack Kornfield, American author and Buddhist teacher
A year ago this month, I launched The Dress at 50. My first blog post was my welcome, which I published December 8th and talked about my reasons for starting my “lifestyle” blog. In my first regular blog post, which I published a year ago yesterday, I waxed poetic about my love of vintage – in particular, a certain 1960s faux fur dress that caught my eye at Treasury, a wonderful little vintage shop in Washington, D.C.
Since then, I’ve published 151 posts, starting with a routine of posting on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Until recently, I reluctantly reduced my postings to Tuesdays and Fridays because I needed to spend more time with another goal of mine from last year, which was to finish my novel, A Village in the Fields. There were times when I struggled to find something to say, but more often than not, I had a lot to say and a lot to share.
One of the most satisfying things the blog has given me is the opportunity to profile some pretty amazing women, who have inspired me with their courage, creativity, entrepreneurial spirit, and generosity. I got to interview women who started their own businesses and heeded the call to do what they loved to do. In other instances, friends introduced me to women whom they thought I would enjoy getting to know and write about, which I did. What a gift that has been! I haven’t had the chance to do more profiles because of my work and my novel, but I hope to get back to publishing at least one profile a month. My profile of local proprietor Jen Komaromi of Jenny K got the most views ever, with a big spike the day it was posted, which speaks to Jen’s tremendous reach (thanks, Jen!).
Another thing I have enjoyed is sharing my little trips within a business trip when I travel. It’s been my hobby to find one thing in each city I visit to seek out and write about. I have been pleasantly surprised to find such gems as the North Carolina Museum of Art in Raleigh, which housed Rodin sculptures inside the museum and in an outdoor garden. I’ve met wonderful people along the way, many who have inspired me, including Carl, the proprietor of Vintage Underground in Chicago. My post “Plant a tree, have a child, write a book” continues to garner daily views, making it the most consistently viewed post.
This is not to say that I have a million followers and a million views a day. Quite the opposite! I reached 10,000 views earlier this month, of which I’m still proud. I have my loyal tribe – thank you, ladies! – despite not having the ability for people to comment, which I’m told is the death knell of blogs (oh well). I had fixed the comment issue, only to have it die on me again. I’m going to try to fix it next month (again), so stay tuned.
Topics have been varied, but I’ve tried to stay true to my motto of living the creative, meaningful, and full life. Whatever allows me to do so is fair game for a topic. I believe I was more introspective in the early months since launching the blog and less so now as a result of work and trying to finish the novel before the year is over, which has been a herculean task. Again, I hope to do more introspective posts.
Interestingly enough, while I enjoy dressing up, which instills a certain level of self-confidence, I’ve been living in a “uniform” the last several months of knit pants, oversized sweatshirts, and tennis shoes because I’ve been too busy and too exhausted to think about putting on an outfit. I hope to change that routine in the New Year, as well. I’ve enjoyed putting outfits together and seeing how the ensemble looks, and sharing them on my blog. I’ve been drawn more to jewelry of late than clothes and being more deliberate when I do find a piece of clothing that catches my eye. Longevity, quality, sustainability, classic timelessness are the traits that guide me as I wander my favorite shops and new shops. I hope to share those traits in future outfits that I feature in my blog in 2014.
Honestly, there were many times when I would conduct an interview, write a post, or publish the post and think to myself, wouldn’t this be a great day job. I still think that – a part-time job to being a full-time novelist, that is. But for now, I’m content to share what inspires me, what helps me fuel my creativity, and what makes my life more meaningful. Here’s to another year of The Dress at 50. Join me on this journey!