Every job has its benefits. I don’t mean 401k or paid sick leave. No, I’m talking about the unforeseen side effects of working in various industries. I remember getting free pizza at my first job as a dishwasher and I felt exceedingly blessed. I also remember getting free books from my time working at Eastern Washington Univ., but again I digress. So the question, what is the side benefits for working at a company filled with successful bloggers? Since I started working for LexBlog, I’ve wanted to try my hand at a serious blog.

At LexBlog, I will be attempting to use the LexBlog platform to launch my new blog. Unlike my failed attempt at a food blog years ago on google blogger: Grim’s Gratitudes, or my “never-was” blog Tech Comm Corner last year, my hope with this blog is to gain access to a community of scholars. Currently, I have two blogs on WordPress, my nerdy friendship club Currently Undecided and my courtship with my significant other, Intentional Vulnerability. I also write from time to time here on donuts. While blogger was meh and I haven’t had any issues with WordPress, when offered to use LexBlog to launch my new blog, I couldn’t help but think of all that I could learn.

So far, I reach out to a multitude of bloggers to add them to LexBlog for free, but I don’t ask them to switch platforms or even use LexBlog in any capacity though many of them have started subscribing to different channels. However, I never thought to ask what the process looked like to make a blog on LexBlog. I’m curious to see the result. So far, there has been mention of a checklist and I’ll be reaching out to the Success Team for more info. In any case, I’m excited.

My day is filled with looking at blog after blog, some good and some, well, not-so-much. I even follow several law blogs now. My day is filled with people collectively thinking, writing, and sharing about experiences, thoughts, ideas, and innovations. They are doing this at no-cost. Sure, many of these people want to advance their careers, but otherwise, the motivation seems to be more valuable. They want to share and explore the world. I use to have a professor that talked about the “power of thirty people in the room all knowledgeable about a singular subject”. The room has now expanded to incorporate the entire world. Blogs, allow you to step into that room. I hope to take that first step.

Between process and motivation, I feel as though I’ve stacked the deck in my favor. In a few weeks I’ll write another donuts post about all the things I’ve learned. Maybe my motivation will take on a new form different from the “collective experience”, but we’ll see. Right now, I’m in the planning stages. I want to give the serious effort of 2 posts a week and have a good idea on the tone I would like the blog to take. I have images already set for the first several posts. I even have a logo. With all the ingredients for a good blog, I hope to bake me a delicious multi-layered blog. The process will be the most interesting.

In the meantime, I will continue to reach out and learn what good blogging looks like. I’ll sift and sort as many law blogs as I can learning what good blogging looks like. I won’t go into details about what my new blog will entail. I will only say that it involves something that lawyers know all too well. So, stay tuned. We’ll see what we learn.

The Great LinkedIn Challenge has come to a close. The competition was fierce. The challenges were tough. The competitors were tireless in their pursuit of the long-awaited donut cake prize. 

All of that being said, I am happy to announce our winner (at last!). 

Congratulations, Melissa!

Melissa is our Associate Editor here at LexBlog with a passion for storytelling, journalism, and helping others. As I was reviewing her completed LinkedIn profile, I noticed a comprehensive theme that truly spoke to her interests and passion for what she does. She also fulfilled all of the challenges – not an easy feat! 

Because LexBloggers put a tremendous effort into making their profiles shine, I chose two runners up who also did a great job getting their profiles to all-star level. 

Well done, Jaime and Josh!

They will also receive a donut prize (a bit smaller than the cake, of course) for their dedication to completing the challenge. 

I hope you enjoyed following along on this fun competition with me. It’s great to see LexBloggers work hard to make a name for themselves online! 

If you’re wondering, Melissa’s infamous donut cake will arrive at the LexBlog office for celebration in mid-January when we’ll have some of our remote LexBloggers in Seattle for the week. Pictures will follow!

Send your congratulations to Melissa, Jaime, and Josh with a connection on LinkedIn!  

No kidding, there I was, checking my email, when I saw it:

[RESPONSE REQUIRED] You’ve been selected as a speaker for WordCamp Maine!

It’s more or less my professional goal to infiltrate the inner circles of the WordPress community, so this came as good news.  Even better, I already had my topic prepared because I’d written it as an ALA article some years ago.  The one problem?  Slides.  I had none, and if I tried to make one I’d need a pro license for MS-Paint.  That’s when I decided to hit the easy button.

Brian Made My Slides

I literally made a jira ticket for Brian to make my slides and he did just that.  They were phenomenal and you can download them here.

The cover slide.

That’ll do, no?  I had the first presentation after the morning break, but put my cover slide on the projector as soon as the break began.  I think the awesome design helped fill a few extra seats.

The Talk Went Pretty Well

A 40-minute stage appearance is a really long thing to commit to rehearsing on a given evening.  Do I shower today, or rehearse my talk?  I showered less than average over the month prior to my talk, but still should have rehearsed a bit more.  I stumbled a couple of times.  But, it seemed like people were engaged.  I was having to pause for laughter at the occasional dev joke and I can’t really ask for more than that.

Yeah Speaking at WordCamp is Fun but Have You Ate Pizza with Matt?

In an amazing coincidence, Matt Mullenweg happened to be visiting Portland that same weekend.  He held a meet and great at a small workspace where several Automatticians work and I finally got to meet one of my heroes.  I was a little star struck!  He honestly was so cool.  So friendly, so engaging, so intelligent, so inspiring.  He spoke for about 45 minutes, and then took questions for about that long.  One person asked him several very specific questions about how to use the media library, and he was incredibly graceful about it.  Not even a chuckle or an eyeroll, just passion and interest about some of the features that came straight from “Photo Matt”.

He spoke about Gutenberg a bit.  He seems happy and he seems unflappable despite the mounting uncertainty in the community.  I think it’s called perspective.  He compared it the uncertainty that came about when WordPress first adoped TinyMCE.  Wow.  Yeah, that’s perspective.  He also said that it can be challenging to discern between valid criticism and criticism of change for its own sake.

Anyways that’s a wrap for this donut.  I’ll be sure to share the video of my talk if it makes it onto WordCamp.tv!

Today, our Director of Product, Jared Sulzdorf, announced in our Slack channel that the Gutenberg editor plugin was installed on our Donuts blog so I thought I would take this opportunity to try out the new editor and write something!

I’m not the type of person that’s afraid of trying new things or taking a risk, especially if I think the risk is worth the reward. For example, one of my favorite hobbies is fire dancing, which is inherently full of risk (yes I burn myself sometimes). But when the news of this new WordPress editor came out there was a lot of controversy and backlash in the WordPress community. The unknown(s) of this new editor seemed scary – will it still work with my plugins?? Will the bugs be resolved? Will my blog implode??

I looked at the Gutenberg test editor a few months ago and was surprised with just how different it looked. What happened to the familiar post editor that I knew and loved?? I’m ashamed to say that instead of trying it, I closed the browser tab and didn’t look back, rejecting the coming change instead of embracing it.

I’m not surprised that the new editor is a very different writing experience, the “blocks” feature is pretty cool and interactive. I like how I can move individual blocks of text and even apply custom background and text colors to my blocks! Apparently you can even format and save blocks for future posts. Adding media in a block is a breeze! I also like how Publishing tools, Categories, Tags, Featured Image and Excerpt fields have moved to one location in the “Document” tab:

Sometime in the near future, I read this post in WP Tavern that offered an explanation for why its time for WordPress to make a big change. It reminded me that change is sometimes hard, sometimes scary, but its necessary for us to learn and grow.

Now I’m using the Gutenberg editor to figure out my thoughts and share them just like I always have, and its not so scary.

Per an Economic Impact Report out from WeWork last week, small businesses are thriving as a result of locating in WeWork, not just because of the concept of “offices as service,” but because of the networking being done by their employees.

And small businesses are not alone. Twenty-two percent of the Fortune 500 are WeWork members because of the opportunity to secure top talent combined with the entrepreneurial environment and culture.

This Thursday WeWork is having a networking happy hour here at Holyhoke.

LexBlog team members should give some thought to taking part. Personal networking can be tougher than online when you’ve already met folks via WeWork’s chat, blogging, Twitter, Facebook and the like, but obviously it can be done – especially here, where people in entrepreneurial companies are wired to network.

  • Where are from originally?
  • Who do you work with here?
  • What does the company do?
  • What do you do?
  • How long have you been there?
  • What do you like most about it.”

LexBlog is here at WeWork, in part because of the networking opportunities that serve you, personally, and our company. As a company founder and CEO, it is my responsibility to help you grow as people, and professionally. And the way you grow is in large part based on who you meet, know and perhaps mentor with.