7 Links: Past, Present, Future


When one of my very favorite blogger friends, Melissa Crytzer Fry (my Mr. Bacon Partner-in-Crime!) nominated me to take part in the 7 Links Challenge, I was honored and happy!

Then I was daunted. To go through 178 posts from the past 8 months and pick just 7 to highlight in specific categories? It was pretty overwhelming. To be honest, when I started to go through them I realized there were some posts I’d completely forgotten about!

In the end, I felt like Melissa had given me a present, and I enjoyed re-visiting blogs of wordsxo past. I hope you do too!


Most Beautiful Post: Melissa cheated on one of her categories, so I’m going to too; I’m going to say that my Sunday videos have been my most beautiful posts. In fact, I’ve been surprised at how popular these have become. I started out thinking I’d make a video once a week of one certain beach spot near where I live: through the seasons, low and high tide, regardless of the weather. Here are two examples: “Waiting for Irene” and “Vacationland Real-live Beach Day Video.”

Most Popular Post: This one was hard. I couldn’t decide: should I list the most popular by number of comments—in which case it was a tie between “What’s a Writer to Do?” and “Are We Competing?” (each with 31 comments—not counting my responses). Or by number of hits on the post—in which case it was a guest post “Are you a Comfy Writer?” by Milli Thornton. In any case, cheating again here and listing them all! (See how I am?)

Most Controversial Post: One of my goals when I started my blog was to not write anything controversial. That said, I did write a post that was controversial without even trying! And believe it or not it was one about punctuation—commas to be exact: “I’m Just a Serial Girl.”

Go figure, writers have strong feelings about commas!

Most Helpful Post: As a rule, I don’t offer advice in my posts—I only talk about my personal experiences. However, one of my earliest posts, called “True or False, I can Help You with Your Resume” offered some tongue-in-cheek advice on resume writing. If nothing else, it’s worth a laugh and it only received one comment, so it deserves some blog love!

Most Surprisingly Successful Post: I’m tempted to say it was the posts I wrote about the message in a bottle, because I was pretty surprised at how many people enjoyed those posts! But the truth is that “Mamas Please Let Your Babies Grow up to be Librarians” surprised me most. It was one of my early posts that helped people find my blog—and it continues to be one of my very most popular posts. It was a review of Marilyn Johnson’s wonderful book: THIS BOOK IS OVERDUE! and led me to actually meeting Marilyn when she was in Portland at a book reading, which led to another very popular post: Libraries Rule, Part 3!

Post That Didn’t Get the Attention It Deserved: In my early days of blogging there were posts that never got any comments. And then there was a period of time that posts would get just one or two comments each. Like most bloggers, I spend a lot of time writing my posts and when they don’t get many comments, it can be dispiriting. That said, if I have to pick just one post (suddenly I’m a rule follower? What’s up with that?) then it’s: “MEH, the Amygdala, and Me.” When I first started out I wanted to write about science, and this was an early attempt to write about science in a humorous way.

Post I Am Most Proud Of: Of all the posts I’ve written, I’m most proud of the “personal essay” posts. Those are the posts that are closest to my heart, and I’ve written about friends, my house & neighbors, my grandmother, my kids, and MEH (My Engineer Husband). But the one that I think I’m proudest of is “The Ghost and Mr. Able” because it’s outside the usual realm of what I write, but it was still very well received.


The final part of the 7 Links Challenge is to nominate five bloggers to participate in this challenge. Here are five blogs I read regularly, and I think you may enjoy reading them too! (There are many more I could have nominated, but I can only name 5!)

And now…a question…do you have a favorite post of mine that I haven’t mentioned? I’d love to hear about it!


  1. Susan Okaty says:

    Good job on the challenge, Julia. I’m enjoying reading (or re-reading) your posts. I see you’ve mentioned me at the bottom, and that was very kind of you. Since I did this once before, I’ll have to go back and see which posts I already mentioned, but this gives me a great opportunity to choose some other ones I really liked. So thank you!

  2. Hmm… what’s with you being such a rule breaker? You cheated many more times than I did :-).

    But I have to say that I DID read “MEH, the Amygdala, and Me” back then, and thought it was a hoot. Which brings me to a realization: a lot of people read our blogs, but just don’t feel they have a compelling response, so they read and move on. I think when I read your amygdala post, I was knee-deep in work and just didn’t have time. SO.. while I totally GET how dispiriting it is to not see many comments, sometimes we need to remind ourselves that people may be out there ‘lurking’ and ‘reading’ but not voicing opinions! 😉

    Thanks for participating. Fun to see your favorites!

  3. Julia, I know this seems like a cop out, but I love all your posts. It’s the honesty and variety that I like so much, so I couldn’t pick just one. Keep doing what you’re doing and that’ll be just fab!

  4. Great challenge, Julia, and you’re a natural for it. I loved reading your choices. (And thank you for the mention :~)

    I’ll have to come back when I’ve got more time to follow links. You’ve mentioned stuff here that I missed.

    My favorites? Well, you’ve mentioned some of them. But two that you didn’t mention that stand out in my memory are “Getting Into Character” (you knew I’d say that ;~) and “The Police Beat.” Those really captured my imagination!

    ~ Milli

  5. Susan, I’m glad you enjoyed reading/rereading posts! And you’re welcome (but if you decide not to do the challenge, I will not be offended in the least!) If it works for you, that’s great too! And I’ll look forward to it on your blog! 🙂

    Melissa, I’m a repeat offender in the cheating department, apparently 🙂 Incorrigible! I thought about that (with commenting) that some have been read but not commented on… I once read that it takes a certain momentum with blogs before people will comment, interesting huh? Of course I’ve also read that comments are consistently down everywhere — so who knows! (p.s. thanks for the challenge AND the comment 😉

    Abi, Glad you enjoyed all the posts! I’m glad you like the variety because apparently I can’t stop myself from being the Heinz 57 type — do you have that expression? I’ll ask you on Twitter! Thanks for the comment! 🙂

    Milli, Of course I gave you credit where credit is due! Isn’t it so interesting that your post got more hits but (a few) fewer comments? I think it’s because of the slightly conversational nature of the other two posts, don’t you? And I’m not so surprised at your personal favorites, you’re right! You love that Maggie angle! 🙂

  6. Pet says:

    You know that I ‘m hooked to your beach videos too 🙂

  7. Pet, Yes, I do! It’s nice to have such a faithful and loyal reader/viewer!! Thank you so much! 🙂

  8. Ann says:

    Julia – Thank you SO much for tagging me! I love it! I agree with Milli…I LOVED the police beat post! However, the Ghost and Mr. Able is one to be VERY proud of….it was amazing!

    You’re too awesome for words how ’bout…..Juliaxo!

  9. Wasn’t this so fun to do? I’m happy to say I’ve read most of your posts and am looking forward to reading the ones I haven’t. I would love to see which posts Jolina picks too!

  10. Ann, I’m so glad you enjoyed the Police Beat post! And I look forward to your 7 links, too. xo from Juliaxo!

    Leah, It was fun to do this and look back! I’m also looking forward to seeing the ones Jolina (and the others) pick, too!

  11. I have to tell you, Julia, great work on narrowing down your lists even when you did cheat. 😉 I’m terrible at doing any of these tasks, because I have an over-active need for context. Obviously you have a bit of that in you, too, since that’s basically the reason you had to list two or three answers on some of those! XD


  12. Ashlee, These things are VERY hard for me, too, as you surmised!! 🙂 If there are no guidelines for choosing, I tend to have a very tough time choosing — not just with blogs but with everything! You too? 😉

  13. Barb Riley says:

    Melissa brought up a great point about reading a blog post, but not commenting if you feel at a loss for words (for whatever the reason: busy, etc.). I think that’s important to know, and also very much the case with me when I read others’ blogs.

    Now. To answer your question, I think one of my favorite posts of yours was about your broken coffee mug! Seems to me that was early on in your blogging career, and I remember being impressed that someone could create such an engaging post about it. 🙂

  14. Haha, yes! Because if something is “The best” this or that, you can always find reasons why one thing is the best in this regard, and another thing is also the best in another aspect, and both times they fit the general theme, but you crave precise context! Ah!


  15. Barb, I completely agree with you (and Melissa) that commenting is key, especially if you want to develop a relationship with the blogging community and/or let the writer know you like their work. You are AMAZING at that, by the way!! And I’m so glad you mentioned the coffee mug–I love that post too! Thanks for reminding me and for the compliment 🙂

  16. I just happened to stumble upon your blog through Ann’s blog and what a wonderful find this is. I love the concept and clicking though each of the posts is so much fun. This is a great way to highlight and remember.

  17. Kate, So glad you found my blog via Ann; and so glad you enjoyed looking through my past posts — what a nice compliment! Thank you for your visit and for your comment! It’s nice to meet you!

  18. Ado says:

    OMG, I LOVE THIS!!! Thank you!! Between being nominated for this AND being sent Mr. Bacon, I am complete! (-:
    I am out of town for the weekend but look forward to this post next week!!
    PS: OMG, I can’t believe I said OMG.

  19. Ado, OMG you said OMG 😀 Hopefully Mr. Bacon will be awaiting you upon your return from the weekend. And I’m glad that you are now complete…. which must mean that I’m PAST complete! 😀

  20. Fun exercise, Julia! When I think about my favorite posts of yours, the ones that first come to mind are the ones you already mentioned about Mr. Able and the ghost. But I also really liked the post where you talked about the police blotter (is that the right term?) in your town. That was a lovely slice of life essay. It still makes me smile. 🙂

  21. Hi Jen, Glad you enjoyed this stroll down memory lane! The police beat posts have been among my favorites too — it was so hard to pick just a few, believe me! I’m glad the police beat ones still make you smile! 🙂