More about the Commenting Experience: Slice #11

sols_6Morning Everyone,

It’s been a busy one and hey it’s 8:32.  I need to write and get to the shower… guitar in one hour and ugh, I didn’t play much this week.  I hate to be unprepared.

But what I really want to write about for this slice is my commenting experience.  Ruth and Stacey motivated us to focus more on commenting at just the right time in the marathon.  I was ready for it.  I have been commenting regularly, but it’s overwhelming to decide on who to click on.  I have my regulars, slicers from our ongoing community, some still with me from the first March Marathon, 6 years ago.  But then I want to welcome and support newbies and slicers I don’t know well.  But until Friday night I was not in a groove.

I think the snow storm here on the east coast slowed things down.  I was busy in the world of Google Hangout preparing for my Saturday Keynote and conference work for next week, but I did make time to click around as slicers posted for the day as well.  And Saturday, Sunday… as my keynote came and went well…my movie date with Mihael came and went… I had that pocket of time to click around.

I read lots of Slices… sorry, I lost track of just how many.  I confess, I love shorter slices and I love slices with images… lots of happy slices with coffee mugs and sharing the pleasures of time to breathe.

I’d be on a roll, one slice, another… rockin’ along…and then there would be one that would sneak up on me, maybe start on a light note but quickly shift to something very serious, heartbreaking at times and as I would finish, I was stopped in my rhythm.  I did not have the words to adequately respond.

I remember in the early days of our writing project site, when I was working with a group of teachers who were just starting to experiment with blogging- sharing their writing publicly and writing comments.  One teacher, frustrated, was at a loss.  She couldn’t. She had too much to say and didn’t buy into the virtual world.  “Why can’t we just share feedback face-to-face? Linda’s sitting right in front of me.” I rolled my eyes at the time and “gently” pushed her to try it without giving up the real world and reluctantly she did.

Now I’m feeling like a comment, one of my short, positive bravos! was just not enough.  Words weren’t enough.  I wanted, need the face-to-face. But of course, all we have our our words and somehow I found some, but yes, this commenting can be challenging.

I have broken through and I am in the commenting groove, so get ready, here I come 🙂


Categories: Slice of Life 2013 | Tags: | 16 Comments

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16 thoughts on “More about the Commenting Experience: Slice #11

  1. Bring it on Bonnie, I love the spirit your comments bring.

  2. I’ve come to believe that commenting is a writing art form – we need to work at it. My students need a lot of initial scaffolding when we begin our yearlong Friday SOL – but they’ve become adept now at commenting on both the substance of the post as well as paying kudos (when merited, of course!) to its craft. This years’ TWT challenge is…challenging! So many writers with really serious slices!

  3. I agree, there are some slices that I read and I get to the end and think Wow, how do I comment on this. It would be so much easier to comment face to face with not so many words, but actions – hugs, a pat on the back or just being there. But, that is not meant to be and we are challenged not only to write a slice each day, but perhaps the biggest challenge is reading and responding to other slices.

  4. This is my first year at the Slice of Life and so I welcome any comments. It helps to know that someone is reading what you wrote. It is also interesting that a post of mine that I feel needs more work will be one where others seem to like it. I tend to like the shorter ones with images too…but the last few days I am forcing myself to read longer ones…and so glad I have. Lots of talent out there…lots of joy, heartache, and love. Today my goal is to read every post and leave a comment…I hope I make it.

  5. I love getting your comments, whether they’re short or long. 🙂 It’s always nice to know when you’re being read (so to speak).

  6. Julie

    I find there are days I can barely read the required three slices and comment and then there are days where I explore many. Last year I challenged myself to read every single slice one day out of the challenge. Today is that day for me this year. Glad it is, as I got a chance to read your’s for the first time. I’ll be back……:)

  7. mag

    Loved your slices and your comments! I’m sure your encouragement was the right thing to do. Comments are like sitting next to stranger on a plane. We can say things to our writing community that we might not share with a school writing group. Plus, there is the additional challenge of brevity and meaning. We must keep it short, so we need to focus on what we are communicating. It’s about the audience. Just having even a few readers makes it worthwhile!

  8. The best part of taking part in my first SOL has been the commenting–both giving and receiving them. I love any comment at all on my posts. I know people read my blog before this month, but most just read quietly and moved on. I’ve been inspired and amazed at at times overwhelmed by the slices I’ve read, too, but I keep coming back for more.

  9. Bonnie,

    Glad I scrolled through to your slice tonight. There are so many, trying to read and respond to a bunch tonight. Your words and a note from Carol have me thinking more about my own slices too. I tend to be wordy at times and that may be why I am not succeeding the way I would like to. Here’s to shorter posts with happy images. Leaves more time to peruse other Slices. Thanks. ~ Theresa

  10. mrssurridge

    This is my second year of Slice of Life and I’m trying to be faithful in my comments. Right now my dog is whining at me–telling me I need to feed her. I’m trying to explain how important commenting is, but she doesn’t get it. It makes my husband laugh because every time he asks me what I’m doing I say “commenting”. It’s like running…the more you do it, the more you want to do it. Great slice!

  11. Paul

    I haven’t done as much commenting as I’d like, and you’re right — with a wider range of people every time out, there’s a greater imperative to move out beyond your ‘regulars’ and seek out the newer members of the community. The more you read, the richer the experience is. I’ve gained two ideas for writing exercises just in what I’ve read tonight. This slice gives voice to the thoughts of many, I’m sure! 🙂

  12. I love the way you describe the “rhythm of commenting” and the way that was disturbed when a post would catch you off guard. I experienced it, with a love/hate relationship kind of feeling, this weekend as well. In some cases I caught myself thinking, “But we don’t know each other well enough for me to read this and say something back!” and for others, where I commented as if we have known each other forever, I left thinking, “Do I sound creepy, talking so friendly to someone I have never even seen a picture of before?” 🙂 But at the end of the weekend, I couldn’t ignore the fact that my life was touched. There were cheers, and giggles, and some tears, and “oh-nos!” And if I am true to myself, as a writer and a human, I know that I can’t experience any of that without acknowledgment. And so, I commented, hopefully with grace and love, because that’s all I have been touched by with the comments that have been left for me. What a wonderful part of the journey.

  13. I struggle with commenting, too. The slicing crowd is so large that I know I can’t comment on even a 1/4 of the posts, and I try to juggle checking in with familiar faces from 2008 while getting to know new ones … and then add to all of that the question of what’s the right thing to say. It’s hard. I remember there was a site that ran a commenting challenge a few years ago. That was interesting. They really pushed us to think about how we comment, how we invite comments, how we comment on comments … I think I need to relearn some of those lessons!

  14. Bonnie,
    Missed this yesterday, but came over from Tara’s slice today. We had a snowstorm, kind of a minor blizzard, in Denver this weekend so I read and responded to more slices than I usually do. I tried to really push outside my usual comment “window” and respond to some people I have never read before. Also tried to read some early slices and some later ones. Like you and so many have said, sometimes it is hard to know what to say. some of the posts are light and funny, and just fun to comment on. Sometimes, though, I read one where the writer has shared deeply, and I just so much want them to know I hear them, and I care, whether I know them or not. And then I wonder if I’m supposed to comment on the writing- style, etc. I’m certainly not an expert on writing! Thanks for a post that made me think…

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