I read this topic on a blog called 'Better In Bulk' at http://betterinbulk.net/2010/04/what-has-blogging-taught-you.html. I've thought about five things blogging has taught me.
-I really am growing like my blog title implies 'Zombie Evolution'. I recently went back and read every single blog of mine starting from the first and I have developed a voice, found more of myself and I'm more confident now than when I first started.
-I'm a more social person than I realized. I first started my blog with no intention of interacting with people, but now I have quite a social network that includes family, old friends, old high school classmates, movie companies, publishing companies, actors, writers and special effects make-up artists.
-I have a purpose more than I ever knew. My blog started out as 'Zombie Killer's Crazy Ideas'. It was just a way to share some of the ideas I've come up with for stories and characters. I ran out of those in about ten blogs, but I found I had more to write about. When I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, my blog took on a whole new life of its own. It became as much about me as it did about my writing, but somehow it was more interesting that way. That leads to my fourth point.
-Writing is more interesting if you don't forget the human element. I've always known that, but I've been making more of an effort to deal with feelings in my writing more than just concepts and fanciful ideas. My wife has helped me to figure out ways to show what a character is feeling, through descriptions of their body language, facial expressions, etc.
-And finally, I've learned the importance of friendship. I had lost a lot of friends when I went into the Navy and I'm just now reconnecting with some of them and finding new ones. A favorite movie quote of mine is from 'Fried Green Tomatoes' when Jessica Tandy says that the most important thing in life is friends. I think that's a big part of why I developed the bipolar disorder while I was in the Navy. Now it feels good to be back home in a familiar place with people who know me. I've even found a new hero, as I blogged about yesterday: Craig Chenery. He is involved in books and movies and is bipolar.