I’m in the middle of an online course called “Blogging for the Writer” through Creative Nonfiction magazine, and a recent assignment asked us to “poke around the Internet” for blogs we like in the topic area of our interest. I found this a useful project, because it prompted me to be more objective and analytical about my blogging. In the interest of turning over new ground beyond the familiar Catholic terrain, I focused my research primarily on Christian blogs by women. Sharing my findings here in case you are looking for something different too!
Rachel Keefe – She calls her blog Write out of Left Field, specifically because she’s “tired of people thinking the Christian Right represents the whole” and wants to “write from the ‘left’ side of things.” An ordained minister for more than 20 years, she posts weekly, by Thursday, on the lectionary readings for the following Sunday. Actually, she uses the readings as writing prompt; her posts are not sermons. She has written several books, and there’s a link to a separate site where they are featured.
Micha Boyett – I first came across her writing through Patheos, an umbrella site for many blogs on varied faiths. A year or so ago, she changed the name of her blog and went out on her own. Her first book is coming out in April, and she is available for retreats/programs. I like how she has grouped certain posts into Series and has a category for them across the top. She also has very colorful and attractive images throughout. She seems to guest post elsewhere a great deal, which I found a little annoying as a reader, because the posts jump to another site after a couple paragraphs, though as a blogger I see the appeal.
Rachel Held Evans – She is a bestselling author and a leading spokesperson for feminist Evangelicals, and her site achieves a high level of engagement. She uses “we” when talking about the community of people who read her blog and herself. She has hosted actual events like a Rally to Restore Unity (advocating Christian civility) that invited readers to submit photo collages, raised money for a well in Africa, had guest posts on the blog and a synchroblog. When she traveled to Bolivia on a mission trip, she wrote answers to questions people submitted in advance and raised money to sponsor children there, She also has thematic series, including a round-up of “around the blogosphere”, women of valor, and Ask an [expert in something] interview posts.
“Ain’t I a Woman blog” by Kendra Weddle Irons and Melanie Springer Mock – It’s rare to see a two-person blog in the category I was looking at. These two women are academics, one in religion and the other in English. The blog’s subtitle is “De/Constructing Christian Images” and its purpose is “to examine ways that Christian culture lets women know exactly who they should be.” Their posts are sporadic but often time-specific in response to an event in the news, and I find their perspectives thought-provoking. They write with a lot of sarcastic humor and irony that I also enjoy.
Chris Glaser – The lone male in my research and another ordained minister who writes books and speaks/leads programs. I like how he states his purpose as a writer “to encourage the ‘thoughtful pause’ in his readers, to help them think of spirituality in fresh ways.” He posts on Wednesday mornings and writes about all sorts of subjects related to faith, from responding to events in the news or books to personal events/milestones in light of faith to scripture-related posts.
The Mudroom – This is a just-launched group blog whose focus is on stories and authenticity. The writers, all women, seem to have Christian leanings but it’s not front and center in their purpose. They’ve posted a list of monthly themes and are soliciting posts. I’m interested to watch how it unfolds.