No blog is an island: recommendations

Have you ever felt exhilarated by stumbling across a blog that speaks to you? I go through my reader every now and then to find new material and good reads. Here are three that I highly recommend – click on the image for their homepage, or the link to the article I read (perfect timing for Blogging 101’s assignment).

The Goat that Wrote (TGTW)
Goat that Wrote

From his about page, Goat tells us he has been trekking everywhere on his feet. Writing from Brisbane, Australia, he’s been trekking the mountains of the United States, Korea, and Japan, just to name a few. There’s an honest and raw touch to how he writes. He’s passionate about walking, nature, going places by foot. I’d imagine him to be a loyal friend, and someone who makes delicious eggs and coffee over portable stoves.

If you’ve been hiking/trekking before, you’d know it’s hard. It takes preparation, skill and a sturdy frame that can take you long distances with a heavy backpack for stretched periods of time. To some it’s second nature – despite the inconveniences, it’s what they love most, and feel at home close to nature. For tamed city dwellers like myself, it sounds like boot camp.

I loved hiking as a kid. I wasn’t afraid of the sweaty T-shirts, heavy backpack, and bugs in tents. The best parts were star-gazing at night with zero light pollution, hovering over just-made hot chocolate telling stories in the wild. This love gave way to city life, clean transportation, and dressy parties. Not that the love for nature can’t exist with cosmopolitan life, but the latter eats away at the spirit of the former.

Visit Goat’s blog. If anything you’ll find someone who’s truly dedicated to and good at one thing in life.

Why? Because Science.

Why? Because Science.Author of Why? Because Science. Thea Beckman, born in the 80s, is an intelligent, angsty, witty writer who takes no crap. I say angsty in a good way. Her tagline is “Combating Stupidity Since 2012”. You get a picture of someone who won’t tolerate stupid questions and is herself, well-versed in the realm of science (she has a masters degree in atmospheric science).

Her post “We Are Star People!” had me cracking up. It’s science accurately put yet comically described. I’m thinking Jon Stewart (Daily Show) on racism, or John Oliver (Last Week Tonight) on Scottish independence, but for science. I don’t think she’s religious. She’s not religious. If I had kids, I’d let them read her blog. Introduce them to the beauty of understanding this world through the lens of scientific proof and reasoning. But in a fun, engaging way. If you find the We Are Star People! post too long, at least scroll to the bottom for the video. Just do it!

Kristen Lamb’s Blog

Kristen Lamb's Blog Kristen Lamb tells you to quit. In no uncertain terms she spells out the path to success: quitting. Not without discernment, but knowing when to stop climbing a mountain when it’s just not the right mountain to climb. Or, climbing it through a different route. She describes how writers have this complex of nursing and re-doing their first piece of work when really they should have abandoned it long ago. Focus on a new project. What I got out of her article on quitting is this: if there’s something that you’ve been working on for years and just can’t seem to get it published, you either quit the book and work on something else, or publish it yourself. Either way, there needs to be some form of action. Deadlock is bad. Quitting is often branded as the loser’s route. Quitters never succeed. Quitters don’t ever make it.

Far from the truth, Kristen discusses how some successful writers today are where they are precisely because of them knowing when to quit. It’s a new thought, for someone coming from a culture that abhors quitting. You only quit because you can’t do it. In this homogeneous city with few career options, anyone not making it big in the corporate world is sort of a quitter. “Sort of”, because as long as you make it big in non-traditional fields you’ll be given the nod. We’re a city that respects money. But before you make those big bucks, be prepared for a lot of shelling and shaming for making those non-traditional choices.

Kristen’s post is a quick read, but might just be that push you need to stop hating your job and do something you truly believe in.

Image credits: from the posts of The Goat that Wrote, Why? Because Science. and Kristen Lamb’s Blog respectively


25 comments on “No blog is an island: recommendations

  1. Have you ever felt exhilarated by stumbling across a blog that speaks to you? It was this line on your post which grabbed me, THIS is the very thing that I look for, that click that wants you to read as many posts as you can, that connection that makes you think why did I not find this ages ago.

    I find this bit the most difficult about blogging, so many blogs and yet seemingly so few speak to me. Ill check out those blogs you linked and ill check yours too. Hopefully there will be something that clicks.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi moi, yes please do! Hope you like the blogs as much as I do. Indeed, there are a lot of blogs to discover. It actually amazes me how many good ones are out there – people are very talented, and some write very well. The writers are generally prolific, some very creative and original. Some speak from a desire to share knowledge or a passion; others, writing as a means of expression and healing. I wonder what yours is about?

      Hope you like my writing and topics too. I’m finding a direction – currently writing from blogging101 prompts, but also about general city life and relationship topics.

      A bientôt!


      • Hi Pixie. There are indeed many talented people out there carving out their little corners of the interwebs. (a fair few not so talented too lol) I am also doing the blogging 101 challenge; that is how I found your blog when I checked that tag. I already subscribed to goats hiking blog after reading it from your page, the science one was a little wordy for me though.

        Even though I am doing that challenge, my blog has been around some time; however I felt I was battling a tide and getting hung up on things so did the blogging 101 challenge in an effort to go back to basics.

        Mine is not an educational blog, not there really to share knowledge (although I am sure a post like that may creep in from time to time) mine started more based on feelings, emotions and scenarios in certain fictional and, less often, non fictional scenarios. That sounds much more dramatic than it really is, it maybe best to give an example.

        For example. I find a picture I like on the net and write a short (often very short) story based on that picture and I try and be descriptive in terms of sights, sounds and emotions on those stories (some more successful than others). I point to this on my about the blog page too.

        It was this format that I had doubts on, even though in my head, and my heart I guess it is the one I enjoy, so I too am looking for a direction, although that direction may end up being the same one it was on… good luck.


        • Hi moi, the photo response method works. If it’s the way you express most comfortably I say go for it! I visited your beach post and left a comment there. Awesome that you are in blogging101 too.


        • I saw that, thanks :). yeah it is what I like best, I try and transport myself to those locations in that time frame and experience what is being said. Maybe i’m a little crazy haha.


        • Btw I’m glad you like TGTW. Why? Because Science. generally has longer posts, but that may also be because the topics she writes about are quite complex and theoretically difficult. She did a great job explaining how everything comes from stars! But I also respect your pov of it being wordy. Her blog remains one of my favorites though.

          Glad you took away something from this post and discovered a new blog. Good luck with your writing and medium, I look forward to more

          Liked by 1 person

    • That’s awesome – glad you like them both. I’m still dedicated to Why? Because Science. – her older stuff is hilarious and well written. She remains my favourite on the list!


  2. Pingback: Blogging 101: Be Inspired By the Community « cognitive reflection

  3. I’d like to add a correction: “If you find “We are Star People” too long, you’re a goldfish and should reassess your attention span.” How’s THAT for angsty. Thank you so much for your wonderful article. I’m honored that my humble blog made the cut!


    • Wouldn’t expect any less from you Thea Beckman! What an awesome article. There are also complimentary YouTube videos that explain the Big Bang, which goes well with this star people article.
      Unrelated, I incorrectly wrote your name as “Beckham” at first. You can see that’s now been rectified!


  4. It usually takes me a while before I find a blog that speaks to me. If it’s a blog about a topic I’m interested in (e.g. writing, culture), I’m likely to give it a follow. If it’s a blog about a topic I’m not too familiar with, I might give it a browse – and if I’m taken in by the quality of writing and effort that goes into the posts, I’m very likely to come back and have another read. Blogs that express impartial, neutral thoughts also tend to pull me in.

    Thanks for sharing these blogs. Kristen’s one looks like a good read. I’ll check it out 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Mabel
      I’m similar – I usually browse through a few more posts before I give a blog a follow. But my interests are diverse – I like literature, psychology, politics, religion, culture, science, travel, art – to name a few topics. I sometimes think what I follow is a bit too all over the place. At the same time I like the different perspectives and information all these blogs offer.
      Glad you like Kristen’s blog too. While I hear you’re going blog a bit less to focus on writing your book, I still look forward to your new posts!


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