March 13, 2006

Blogging For Books

MAY I JUST SAY----if you like the BLOGGING FOR BOOKS contest, then please help get the word out on your blog. We had 8 entries last time, and it may simply be time for B4B to die a sad sad little death via ennui. We can stand around making tut-tut noises, me and the 8 purists who remain staunchly bloggerriffic, and together we shall shake our heads and say, SHE WAS A GOOD OLD DAWG, DOC, BUT IT'S HER TIME... I'm committed to running it up through April, and then we shall re-assess.

I am off to New York for the rest of the week, and shall blog sporadically about what's happening as the laptop allows...

Blogging 4 Books is LIVE NOW. We remember with fondness The Zero Boss, because he made it up. He stopped working for Blogging for Baby....where is he now? I do not know!

How to play: You blog on a chosen topic. You post a link to your blog entry in the comments below this entry. B4B closes at MIDNIGHT your time next Monday.

If you have no blog, you write the essay and cut and paste it (no attachments please) into an email to Ann Fitten (the Bloggess behind Edgy Mama) and ask her sweetly to host it for you.

Your special guest blogger this month is DebR, a former B4B winner with her blog Red Shoe Ramblings. She will narrow the entries down to seven.

If you are one of the seven finalists, your entry will be read by author Sarah Smiley, whose book, GOING OVERBOARD chronicles the misadventures of a military wife. She will pick first, second and third place.


The rights to GOING OVERBOARD were recently optioned by Kelsey Grammer's company, Grammnet, and Paramount Television. It is now in development to be a half-hour sitcom for CBS. Dude, that's just cool.

And now, THE TOPIC! As usual your topic relates to the book...

Write about the military. HOW BROAD IS THAT? SO broad. You can talk about anything from your own experiences in the military, or you own experiences as a pacifist, or how hot Jake Gillenhaal looked in Jarhead, or how Michael Kors could NOT see the military influence in Daniel V's collection for Project Runway, and how when Daniel pointed out the BIG HUGE OBVIOUS MILITARY boob-epaulette on the front of an evening dress Michael Kors said, "Oh, THAT thing. I can't tell you how bad I want to RIP IT OFF that otherwise pretty dress," or how the Trojans were SO dern dumb for buying that whole "hollow horse" ruse, and how the fact that the horse was used to SNEAK AN ARMY INSIDE THE CITY makes Trojan such a BAD name for a condom.

Heck, I'll take anything with the word SOLDIER in it.


Posted by joshilyn at March 13, 2006 5:53 PM

I'll comment on B4B on the writers website I frequent. Perhaps it will spark some interest.

Posted by: tina at March 13, 2006 6:02 PM

Ok, for the first time, I am actually entering B4B!

Here is my entry (albeit one that was previously written)

Posted by: kim at March 14, 2006 1:42 AM

It didn't work....I pasted the wrong url (sheepishly hangs her head in first-timers shame)


Posted by: kim at March 14, 2006 1:45 AM

Here is mine!

Posted by: Meghann at March 14, 2006 3:06 AM

Not writing on the topic this month, but I am writing about B4B for BlogHer today.

Posted by: Debra Roby at March 14, 2006 11:11 AM

Here's mine, and though it's old, I think it fits the theme well. - Sucker for a Cause

Posted by: amber at March 14, 2006 12:05 PM

Great idea!! I haven't written anything about the military, and only just started blogging, but I love this idea. I hope you keep it going a bit longer so maybe I can get in on it....

Posted by: cloudscome at March 14, 2006 2:34 PM

Here's my entry that I actually just posted yesterday. Then I read over at Mir's blog (Woulda Coulda) that I was morally obligated as a blogger to enter this contest...which I read about today for the first time and think is a great idea BTW!

The post is not my opinion about the military (as we don't share the same military - mine is Canadian), but it does have the word "soldier" in it....once. Letters to my brother in Afghanistan from my children. The military through the eyes of a child.

Posted by: Vicky at March 14, 2006 4:06 PM

Here's my entry- something I've never talked about before! Just for you! And Mir! And the Blogging for Books tradition!

Posted by: liz at March 14, 2006 4:50 PM

OK, I'm in! My entry is here:

Posted by: Donna at March 14, 2006 4:58 PM

I'm pretty new to the blogging thing. In fact, I don't even have my site design finished, but, what the heck! I'm in! I'd hate to see Blogging for Books die an untimely death so, here's my entry

Hopefully that should get you there, like I said, new to blogging. If that doesn't get you there, it's the entry entitled "Just" a soldier at

Posted by: Jessica at March 15, 2006 12:10 AM

If you should see me anytime soon with someone named Lani IN PERSON, check out HER shoes, but when it comes to mine, AVERT your eyes woman! You have been warned. You will be so sad if you should mistakenly look down at my feet. They are not feet a shoe shopping lover should have to endure. I apologize in advance....

Posted by: Linda Sherwood at March 15, 2006 7:59 AM

I'm posting for my husband who writes often about the military. Check out my favorite posts of his at:

Posted by: Kristin La Flamme at March 15, 2006 9:20 AM

Ooops, I posted too many B4B entries. This shall be the official post:

Posted by: Kristin La Flamme at March 15, 2006 9:52 AM

Wow. Great to see so many entries this month. Here's mine:

Good luck to everyone!

Posted by: dragonfly at March 15, 2006 10:37 AM

Mir sent me. Can I come in? :)

Here's my post. This is the first time I've done this type of thing, so please be gentle.

Hope you like it!


Posted by: Shash at March 15, 2006 12:46 PM

I'll advertise on my blog!

Posted by: Edgy Mama at March 15, 2006 5:25 PM

Here's my blogging for books entry about the military. I'm glad blogging for books has been resurrected as I never got around to doing it before.

Posted by: jen at March 15, 2006 5:36 PM

Thanks for the broad entry rules!

Posted by: Dara at March 15, 2006 8:40 PM

Oh, okay - you twisted my arm. Good thing this topic is so dang BROAD...

Posted by: Africableu at March 16, 2006 1:57 AM

Some terrific entries so far! Here's my post:

Posted by: trillwing at March 16, 2006 10:48 AM

I love B4B, I don't want it to die. I love reading all of your words. But often the topic doesn't inspire me - this one didn't either.....but I ran with it, or tripped with it, or...well at least I did it.

Posted by: Cele at March 16, 2006 12:28 PM

Here's mine, such as it is.

Posted by: Jasper at March 16, 2006 12:35 PM

This is my first trying to do the B4B. I tried to post my link to my post but I get an error that says "my comment was denied for questionable content." Follow my url to get to my blog and it is the March 16th post.


Posted by: Stacie at March 16, 2006 2:18 PM

Let's try this.. since I can't get anything in the URL to work for me...

it is at http://dimplespoo blog-city com


Posted by: Stacie at March 16, 2006 2:30 PM

It's time to give this a try!

Posted by: LoryKC at March 16, 2006 4:01 PM

Here is my entry:


Posted by: Amy at March 16, 2006 5:19 PM

OK, here's my entry. I wouldn't want any dogs to be put down because I didn't submit something. Gads.

Posted by: Cyndi at March 16, 2006 7:06 PM

Does poetry count? If so, one I wrote a while back:

Posted by: terry at March 16, 2006 10:47 PM

Oh yeah, an essay I also wrote:

Posted by: terry at March 16, 2006 10:48 PM

I did one :)
I'm a fan of 'gods' and a fan of your blog, and this is my first B4B. Yeehaw!

Posted by: Janet at March 17, 2006 2:02 AM

ROFL! I, personally, am rooting for Janet. I know her, and she's a darn good writer and dead sexy. :) She sends me poetry and funny ecards. Can't help but love her. That, and I have personally seen the "garden" of which she writes. Alabama at its finest.

Posted by: Heather at March 17, 2006 7:50 PM

I am a military wife of nearly 12 years. I don't write about being military, it's just something that is. I don't expect non-military people to understand, because they don't. Much as they might like to, want to, try to, they often don't.

It was nice, today, to meet a woman in the commissary (that's mil-speak for "grocery store") whose husband had done a recruiting tour (like mine did five years ago). It was nice, because she understood. She understood like no one who has not done a recruiting tour understands. I bet, even though she's Air Force and we're Navy, she wonders where he is when he's deployed, and I bet she leaves a light on for him. And I bet... she would know exactly who the unsung hero is.

Posted by: Dejah at March 17, 2006 9:13 PM

This is my first attempt at B4B but I thought I'd give it a shot. Here is my entry:

Posted by: Joyce at March 18, 2006 12:26 AM

okay I'm doing this, granted not sure what we were really allowed to write about but I kind of wrote a book. :) I'll post in a bit.

Posted by: Eliza at March 18, 2006 7:55 AM

Okay this is just about life in the military and how different two services really are and how I learned what moving and deployments really were. :)

Posted by: Eliza at March 18, 2006 8:13 AM

Okay it didn't appear the last time I posted so this is my entry. akkk so sorry.

Posted by: Eliza at March 18, 2006 8:14 AM

Something I wrote a couple of years ago when my brother and bil were both in Iraq.

Posted by: Jensgalore at March 19, 2006 7:08 AM

A great idea for finding new, interesting entry here but one comment. While I'm thrilled for Sarah Smiley--both for her personal success with Going Overboard and for her talent in bringing alive the long unrecognized challenges of the military spouse--I'm not sure she's the person to be judging essays on military subjects. The whole dilemna of the military spouse (as Sarah heself writes) is having to put up with unreasonable sacrifice while largely being left out of the action. A military spouse is the ultimate outsider--an outsider with more at stake than anyone else--but still an outsider. Most of the military spouses I've known can't describe their husbands' (or wives', in a few cases) jobs. They're good at spotting the often absurd rules, but are typically at a loss to explain why the rules exist.

Please don't take this as sour grapes. I'm very happy for Ms. Smiley, but having her judge a competition on military blogs is like having her Navy pilot husband judge a competition on, say, raising children in times of war...something in which he would have an acute interest but would (if he were fighting the war) have little experience.

Kim Ponders
Major, USAFR
author of The Art of Uncontrolled Flight

Posted by: Kim Ponders at March 19, 2006 1:44 PM

I might agree with you if this was a contest for military types writing, as you say, military blogs, but it's a contest for writers. Most of the entries so far have been written by "outsiders" very like Smiley herself----CONNECTED or NEAR but not IN or OF the military. The entrants are mostly people with military spouses or siblings or parents (me too, by the way) or grandparents or lovers, one woman who THOUGHT about enlisting but didn't, even one metaphorical thinker who wrote about being labeled a FIELD MARSHALL by Meyers Briggs. (Me too, by the way.) I've only read the first half of the entries, but so far, only one essay has been written by someone who is or has been in the military.

PS, Your book showed up on Amazon as a link on one of my book know, one of those, "people who bought gods in Alabama also bought..." and I followed the link and got very interested and ended up ordering it. It's in my TO READ pile. I'm ashamed I haven't gotten to it, since, look, here you are, but I've been reading Truman Capote in honor of PSH's win and because, WOW, brilliant writer, brilliant STYLIST, right? But I am very much looking forward to cracking it when I get off this Capote kick.

I don't take it as sour grapes at all. In fact, if you're interested, I'd love to have you as a B4B judge in the coming months. We base the topic on the BOOK and the author has input into what the topic should be. I just require that it be broad enough to be taken several ways and be OPEN to all....So, for example, instead of "write the story of how you birthed your first child," which would be only open to women who have become mothers in the traditional manner, I would say "Write about birth, be it biological or artistic or getting skeeved out watching cows do it on the Discovery Channel." Like that.

I will CC this to your email addy,

Posted by: Joshilyn at March 19, 2006 4:26 PM

Here is my paltry offering:

Long Live Blogging For Books!

Posted by: Holley at March 19, 2006 4:26 PM

It was VERY hard to think of what to write. Maybe the broad topic made me panic a little bit.

Posted by: Sarah at March 19, 2006 5:01 PM

My very first attempt to BFB!

Posted by: Sara Diane at March 19, 2006 6:17 PM

Joshilyn--Is there any way the B4B Yahoo group could be updated when the contest is live? I gave up checking it and have had trouble tracking since I entered and was a finalist awhile back.


Posted by: Hannah at March 19, 2006 7:26 PM

I'm in - my entry is at:

and is titled: Blogging4Books

Posted by: Sara at March 20, 2006 10:04 AM

Here is my entry:

Posted by: Leslie at March 20, 2006 2:00 PM

This wasn't the post I originally intended to submit about military life, but somehow this is what I ended up with.
Good luck, all!!

Posted by: Crystal at March 20, 2006 5:15 PM

Love B4B!! I'm happy to see all of the entries you've gotten this time. Here's mine:

Posted by: Skovbo at March 21, 2006 12:25 AM

ok, here's mine...

Posted by: barbie2be at March 21, 2006 1:21 AM