I had the opportunity to have dinner with the person who does more to hold me accountable to truth than anyone else in the world. We talked about a lot of things and then I ventured out on the subject of my writing. When I discuss writing with her, it’s like walking out on a narrow bridge over shallow water. One wrong step and I’m in the icy drink, but perhaps a little wiser and more careful.
I shared what I wanted my next blog to be about and she didn’t like the title at all. I felt the bridge quaking there, but I stayed dry. I explained that I knew what I was doing. Then she asked me the question, “What’s your call to action?”
“What’s my… what?”
“The call to action.”
I didn’t know what she meant, I was flailing and soaked.
A call to action, it turns out, is what I read in the good blogs and hear on the best podcasts. They don’t leave the audience with nothing, but the reader or listener is challenged to do something, a call to action, that will hopefully change who they are.
Oh, one of those.
So I told her I could think of a good call to action, but she stopped me there and told me this:
“You can’t tell other people to do something that you haven’t done yourself.”
She asked if my blog had a mission statement. I admitted it didn’t. The last blog I wrote over several years had the mission to keep my writing, little else. I want this blog to be more. But of course, she’s right. Just like the novels I work on that have a central theme that everything must point to, a blog must have a theme that each post supports. This theme, or mission statement, ought to be posted with the header.
Then the call to action would always reflect that.
My dinner partner may not be a writer, but she’s got more writing wisdom than I do. Maybe that’s why she never liked my poetry and we ended up getting married 23 years ago.
So I’ve held off on the latest blog entry about writing to admit here that I want to fortify my blog with a mission statement in order to strengthen the call to action.
This means we both have homework. Mine is to think of a simple mission statement that will sharpen what I write about. What am I doing here and why?
Yours is simpler. Leave a comment or tweet telling me a little about yourself and what you want from this blog. I’m through writing just for myself and want to know my reader more.
Let’s share this adventure.