look ahead to 2017

As I sit here at my computer writing this post I’m excited about the possibilities for the blog in 2017. So what are some of the changes in order? I’m glad you asked…

More posts in store for the new year. About twice as many in fact as I’m committing to a Wednesday/Saturday posting schedule in 2017. It took me a while but I think I’ve finally figured out how to make a posting calendar work for me. If you’ve spent any time blogging at all you will eventually confront the challenge of figuring out what to write about next. And if you are at all serious about your site and respectful of the people who make the effort to follow it, this question of what next can quickly grow from challenge to anxiety especially in the face of a looming deadline.

The advice of experienced bloggers is that a posting calendar facilitates sticking to a posting schedule. For too long, I attempted to keep to the latter without the benefit of the former. So, for example, while I would know the deadline for my weekly Saturday post was upcoming I wouldn’t necessarily know the topic of those posts even after sitting down to write them. This is simply the recipe for frustration. In early November, this all changed for me. I created a posting calendar in Evernote that has helped me research and plan my posts through the end of the year. Thus far, the calendar has worked very well and I’ve kept to it with minimal variation.

One-on-one interviews with people living the life of buildings, bread and bicycles. Simply, it’s time to put more people in PeopledPlaces. I’ve always planned to profile the folks I meet who share my love of architecture and design, bread making and other craft foods, and bicycling culture. Beginning in 2017, once every other month or so, I’ll introduce this project.

Video. I enjoy the writing and photography I do as part of telling the PeopledPlaces story but it’s time to introduce video into the mix. Some stories are just better told this way and readers can expect to start seeing video shorts as soon as I figure out how to improve the sound quality of my recordings.

Lastly, a monthly e-newsletter will begin in January. I’ve been testing this project for some time but didn’t want to begin until I had a better idea of the focus for the email subscribers to PeopledPlaces. If you’ve followed the blog for some time particularly those posts related to bread making you’ll note that I don’t include a lot of bread recipe details. There’s a couple of reasons for this. First, I want to give full credit to the sources from which I draw my bread baking inspiration and the best way I know to do this is to link directly to those sites. Second, I’m more interested in the story, culture, people and craft if bread rather than obsessing over temperatures, ratios, hydration percentages and the like.

As I’ve written about previously, I adhere to Peter Reinhart’s recommendation to follow the spirit of the law rather than the letter of the law. But this perspective doesn’t mean the details of bread baking are unimportant to me. For example, I keep a bread log to track my progress as a baker and wherein in note successes and maybe more importantly, failures. For those who’d like to go deeper, the PeopledPlaces e-newsletter will provide this behind the scenes view. Also, the e-newsletter will give readers a heads up on posts planned for the month upcoming as well as ideas and progress on new projects.

Well, this is the plan for the changes ahead and I can’t wait to get started. If you’ve enjoyed following the blog I’d love to hear it. And if you have any ideas for future topics or projects, let me know. As always, thanks for reading.

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