I’m having a hard time believing that Wordcount Blogathon 2010 ends tomorrow. I’ve blogged for 30 straight days, something I wasn’t sure I could do when I agreed to take part in this crazy thing. Looking back now, it feels like the time just flew by.
It’s amazing what 100 writers urging each other on can accomplish in just a month. As odd as it seems, I may actually miss it. The blogathon generated it’s own kind of energy, as well as, a camaraderie often missing in the solitary life of a writer. I got ideas from my fellow bloggers and was encouraged to stretch in ways I might not have otherwise. (Haiku, anyone?) And while I found new readers, it also led me to some fascinating work that others are doing.
On weekends during the blogathon, I’ve been posting poems or inspirational stories that might be of interest to ex-offenders and those who help them. Today, I’d like to single out some newly discovered sites that really inspired me.
1. First, a shout out to Prison Photography for leading me to this great graphic on the number of incarcerated individuals in the U.S. by state. It was created by the Pew Center for the States. It’s designed so that you can click on the state and automatically find out how many are people are in prison or jail there. It’s also color coded so you can automatically see where the high concentrations of inmates fall. Blog author Pete Brook is a Brit who lives in Seattle and describes himself as an amateur photographer. His blog features fascinating prison photos from photographers around the world. His ultimate goal, he says is to “prick people’s curiosity about the prison systems that exist within their societies.” How much do you know about yours?
2. Correctional Nurse.net Lorry Schoenly is a registered nurse who works in corrections. She’s also a writer and educator. I just discovered her site this week and haven’t been able to scratch the surface in terms of all the information she has there. Some of her recent posts include advice on dealing with the fallout from pepper spray, how to help prevent suicides in prison and jail and how correctional staff can identify and deal with alcohol withdrawal. I can tell this is a blog I’ll be coming back to again and again.
3. Ed Pilolla Ed is a fellow-blogathoner and journalist who used his 30 days to continue composing love letters he plans to publish in a book soon. Each daily post brought a new letter and another lesson for me in evocative and exquisite writing. In his free time, Ed also was kind enough to stop by this blog to offer comments and encouragement.