Heart of a Southern Woman

A snapshot of life one blog post at a time.

Zero to Hero Challenge Progress


Thought it might be helpful to let other bloggers on wordpress know who I am and what I am about perhaps. Besides, that is also the first assignment in the Zero to Hero Challege! 

For my friends and famly, and readers who have yet to become friends, I am engaging in this  30- day challenge issued by wordpress to encourage their bloggers to become better at what we do–mainly, writing our blog!  I am excited about actually learning about blogging and its techniques, because i just jumped in and started writing a little over a year ago! I wanted a forum, and I wanted to write, but most of all I wanted a place to write and interact with friends and family! 

Along the way, I’ve noticed  a few things:  Posts about community life , like the barbecue fund- raiser at our local fire department get the most fun community interaction from local people who somehow hear about your blog.   However, as I am disabled and a wheel chair user, I don’t go to a lot of these anymore, so it can only be a small part of what I would write about. Of course there are always my red  hatters! They have been my “group” for ten years! We go out and play together once a month, and the relationships I have formed with those women are some of the highlights of my life. We play and laugh together and remind each other to enjoy life! Ah, then there is my neighborhood…a diverse group of people of all races, ages, and family make-up—a wonderful microcosim to observe. I was a psychologist aterrall, observing and loving people’s stories is what I love! But its also a way to estrange  your neighbors! LOL

Then there are the issues I love to discuss! Domestic Violence and Abuse are two of my most hated things, and I like to campaign against them , to keep reminding people of the damage it causes and how we need to stamp it out like polio! I am a fervant supporter of public education  and its importance!

I’m really into politics, but as a liberal democrat, some of my family and friends even dump me at election time, I can be overbearingly opinionated apparently–or is that them?! LOL Part of me thinks I might have to stop writing in this vain, but I’d like to be of substance as well, What good does it do, if we have the blessing to grow older , not to be able to express what we believe we have learned is important along the way?! I’m getting old enough to realize some people just aren’t going to like me no matter what I do or who I am, so I’m stronger at being myself! I try to respect those who disagree with me, and I expect their respect in return. We can do that, 

Then there is genealogy…and gardening…two hobbies that I love and enjoy sharing snippets of whenever appropriate.  But genealogy is becoming more than a hobby to me…I’d say a calling, a way to give a gift to my descendants. Others would say an obsession! LOL  If you have read anything I’ve written in that category, you know that I love the stories…stories of my ancestors, and stories of all the new cousins I’ve met since doing my DNA on ancestry.com! 

Then there is my family of course. I know that is not as interesting to you as it is to me, so I will try to keep it at a  minimum. But the title of my blog is “The Heart of a Southern Woman”…my heart is in my family…but also in my friends, my life!

Spirituality and angels are another area I like to explore! I’ve had some experiences and I like to share them and to hear about  others!

I HAVE TWO QUESTIONS i’D TRULY LOVE TO HAVE SOME FEEDBACK ON… I was wondering whether to change the title. I have been playing with “Stories from the Heart of a Southern Woman’ as well as just “Heart of a Southern Woman”.. I am proud of my Southern heritage–well, most of it. I also have terrible heart disease that should have ended my life quite many years ago. So “my heart”–the fact that it is still ticking–is important to me! I also think from the heart connotes genuineness—a trait I admire. (Of course, I’ve considered many other titles, more substantive, but keep coming back!)

Another question I’ve been playing around with…is… should I try to specialize in my blog…one for genealogy…one for gardening…one for red hatters..so that perhaps I would build up an audience with one subject matter?  I think I prefer the different subject areas, but I do want to attract readers—so I’d love some feedback in that arena—should I lmit the scope of each blog? 

But ah, I forgot! This is part of my challenge, incorporating seveeral days’ assignments as I try to catch up! LOL  Day six’s assignment was to insert a new element–new to you. So one thing I want to do is try to create and insert a collage of pictures, depicting the various subject matters I like to write about…I’ve never done a collage before, so lets”” just see how this goes! 

Thank  you for any feedback  you can give, and here’s looking forward to a productive challenge!  Helen

Author: Helen Holshouser

Old enough to enjoy life, I am a Red Hatter, grandmother, gardener, and amateur genealogist. I am a retired clinical psychologist, master's level, who is disabled with heart disease, but having fun with family and friends. Married over 40 years, I have two grown daughters and three grandchildren. I have learned that grandchildren provide a joy one never knew existed---writing feeds my soul, gardening is therapy, and genealogy research makes me feel like a detective!

8 thoughts on “Zero to Hero Challenge Progress

  1. Nice collage!

    Personally, I like the shorter title: “Heart of a Southern Woman”, but either title works.

    As for whether you should focus your blog on a particular topic, it depends on what you want to do with it. If it continues to be a personal project for your friends and family, then keep it as a personal blog which covers a variety of topics. However, if your goal is to attract a lot of readers and eventually monetize the blog, then having separate blogs for each focus may be a better strategy. My two cents.


  2. Thanks so much Liza! Your feedback is very valuable to me. Your assessment is right on–that’s the rub…guess I have to decide. I’m thinking perhaps keeping it personal and folksy for now. Money is good however, maybe that will have to wait for something published like in a magazine or book! Appreciate your time! Helen


  3. I like your blog just the way it is because I never know what I’m going to find and learn when I tune in. I think the name is good too, although stories from the heart …. would be good too. I guess I feel the same about your blog as I feel about you — I love you just the way you are!! Love and hugs, Linda

    Sent from my iPhone



  4. What a precious friend you aare Linda McLaughlin! Thank you!


  5. Hi, Helen! You have a fascinating blog. I think you can have a successful blog that covers multiple topics, as long as your readers can easily find the topic(s) they are interested in. If you post a lot, multiple blogs would probably be better. I follow both kinds of blogs, but some probably prefer not so many diverse topics. I say go with what works best for you. Either way, each topic will demand attention, which is something I’m not all that good at. Perhaps a regular posting schedule is the answer there.

    I like your current, shorter title (Heart of a Southern Woman). I think it says you have stories to tell without explicitly saying so. Looking forward to see your next challenge post!


  6. Thank you so much for the thoughtful feedback Lee. I am battling pneumonia right now, so suspect will have to write erratically for a bit. So glad to have your blog and others to entertain and encourage me to stay involved. Helen


  7. Pingback: Zero to hero: eleven | (a)typical amateur

  8. Thank you for coming by and leaving a comment! I am struggling to get my blogroll up and running and looking like I’d like, as we speak! I cannot tell you how wonderful this challenge has been for me–I have learned a great deal!


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