Doughnuts, hammers and MiGs

The Week 7 posts for Weekly Blog Club provided useful advice, shared wisdom (gained rather painfully at times) and experience, and asked lots of questions. There were 16 posts this week.

The blogging week started off with Phil Jewitt telling us about the importance of hammers and knowing how to use them. Dan Slee was the one who shared the doughnut meme with us (was I the only one looking rather longingly at doughnuts when out shopping after reading it?).

I was not the only one who was delighted that Mark Braggins did not make us wait too long for part 2 of his excellent account of LocalGovCamp North West. For those of us unable to get to the event, as well as for those attending other sessions on the day, it was extremely useful that Mark provided a good account of discussions.

There were three posts from Ian Curwen about the highs and lows of his journey to health, fitness and a slimmer self. I really admire Ian’s honesty with himself as well as readers, and think that he has achieved so much already.

Another transparently honest writer is Diane Sims (better known on Twitter as @72prufrocks). This week’s post was as lyrical as her previous posts and one of those to which one wants to return. Although the title suggests sadness, she found a positive side to losing things. It seemed to me that she was writing about the process of how wisdom is gained over the years. I get the feeling that wisdom is a much overlooked quality.

Rachel Jane Snook shared what she did not, does and does not know – and what she has found out so far – about open data. She is interested in how it could be applied in her area of interest – social housing – so I hope that those of you who share her interest will respond.  Sarah Lay shared what she is reading relating to website design and content strategy. She also asked what others are reading about web content strategy or UX (user experience) design, especially relating to local government sites.

Carolyne Mitchell announced Scotland’s first national TweetMeet: the Tartan TweetMeet (of course). It will take place in a number of locations. Read her post to find out more!

Kelly Quigley-Hicks shared what she had got out of her first read of Euan Semple‘s book that had been recommended by Shirley Ayres. The advice “the more you blog the better you get at it…” seems especially appropriate for Weekly Blog Club.

The way in which Weekly Blog Club members (both writers and readers) interact, share and inspire each other is becoming very interesting. Louise Brown was inspired this week by Sarah Lay to consider whether charities should commission apps or whether their online needs might be met more simply (and, probably, more cheaply).

Peter Olding wrote about his intention to build a new website and his thoughts about what to call it, since his preferred name refers to MiG fighter jets, and he does not wish to upset the Russians.*

Janet Harkin‘s alphabetical review of her first year of blogging, sharing what she learned, is an interesting read. It could be especially useful to new bloggers or those hesitating to start (come on, join us). Another one who shared learning experiences in her Week 7 post was Kate Bentham. She realised that her inability to talk directly to children whose first language is sign language meant that she was unable to make them feel included at an annual families event, so she decided to learn some words. Peter Olding made an interesting comment on her post about the cost of sign language courses being off-putting.

Since the week had been included Valentine’s Day, I finished the week with a post about love of culture and community, how important culture is to the sense of community. This was prompted by my engagement (in a volunteering way) with a project to help a local place’s future design.

This club is as much about the readers as the writers, so if you participate as a reader, please do join in by responding to questions via Twitter or in the comments on the relevant people’s blogs. Writers, if you are suffering from writer’s block and need some inspiration, tweet out and you should receive some help quite quickly.

Any ideas for the (strictly optional) Week 8 theme would be welcome!

If you want to help collate, encourage and disseminate links to Weekly Blog Club posts, do let me know. My intention always was just to kickstart the club and then encourage others to share in the running of it.


Janet E Davis

Summary of Week 7 posts.

Hitting the spot by Phil Jewitt.

JAM TODAY: Social media expressed as doughnuts by Dan Slee.

LocalGovCampNW (Part 2) by Mark Braggins. [see Love, loss and bison – Week 6 summary post – for part 1 and other LocalGovcamp NW links).

This week’s loss by Ian Curwen.

Uh-oh by Ian Curwen.

Run from hell  by Ian Curwen.

Five things I lost by Diane Sims.

Everything I don’t know about Open Data by Rachel Jane Snook.

A little light reading by Sarah Lay.

We’ll tweet again, we know where, we know when by Carolyne Mitchell.

Some Semple advice by Kelly Quigley-Hicks.

Is there an app for that? by Louise Brown.

What’s in a name? by Peter Olding.

The A-Z of my first blogging year by Janet Harkin.

Talking: My Sign to Learn by Kate Bentham.

Love culture, love community by Janet E Davis.

*If you wonder why it might not be a good idea to upset Russians, read about Big Oleg in the Konnolsky Files  (humour may be involved).


Weekly Blog Club was set up in early January 2012 to encourage people to blog regularly, and especially to encourage those working in and with the public sector, charities and voluntary organisations in the UK to find their own 'voice' through writing.

Posted in #WeeklyBlogClub summary, cake/caek, charitable trusts, communicating, communities, cultural heritage, culture, digital technology, education, health, housing, intellectual property, local government, open data, public sector, setting goals, social media, storytelling, websites, working practices

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