A Year In Writing
September 19, 2013

A Year In Writing

September 13th was my one-year anniversary as a writer for redOrbit.com. A year ago on that date, I published my first article titled “Is a Banana Just a Banana?” This blog was my first step into doing something I love: writing about science and health. It soon became so much more. So, I wanted to write a blog reflecting on my last year as a writer for a website I admire and respect…a commemoration, if you will.

In the last year, I have written articles in categories from the four main redOrbit topics of science, space, health, and technology as well as other categories of interest including pets, nature, education, lifestyle, seasonal, media & entertainment, and so much more. I have relearned areas of science that I had since forgotten since my days as an undergrad. I have learned about really cool technology for all aspects of life. And my knowledge on diseases, disorders, studies, medicine, holistic treatment, and health issues as a whole has grown exponentially. Plus, I have been able to write about things that I dearly love like travel, camping, national parks, hiking, and writing.

Yeah, I’d say writing for redOrbit has been a good addition to my life.

I have loved learning and writing each of my blog articles, but I thought I would highlight some of my favs here. I mean, this is a commemoration of my experience this past year, so why not promote some of the publications, right? Forgive how myopic and gloating this might seem, but an anniversary is nothing if it is not a time to celebrate.

So, one of the blogs I wrote that still sticks with me was released on February 24, 2013. It was about the artwork of caddis flies. What I found so interesting about this blog was learning about how art and nature married to create completely unique and beautiful pieces. It furthered my spark for arts and crafts.

Beyond the caddis fly artists, I have enjoyed doing different series on travel and the outdoors. This past summer I wrote a series about some of America’s National Parks (click here, here, and here for three of those). I was able to write about something that I dearly treasure as an American and an outdoor girl as I was visiting these places. Plus, I was able to use pictures I had taken from some of these as the image that accompanied the blog. The pride that swelled within me at seeing my photos posted next to my words is still indescribable for me. I was able to show through the visual and written mediums places that I love. That is a great feeling.

Another series that I am proud of from this last year was the Travel Journal series (click here for Day 1) I wrote about my journey and experiences in central Europe this past July. redOrbit allowed me to share my experiences and travel knowledge with readers…and maybe even inspire them to travel, too.

And I would be remiss if I did not mention the surfeit of blogs about health I have written. From information about health conditions I found out I have (like Factor V Leiden) to the studies and knowledge about health and mental health in general to being fit and healthy, each health-related blog has been a journey into understanding for me and, hopefully, for redOrbit readers. Ideally, right?

In addition to the completely enjoyable and informative blogs I have written, I have personally gained benefits as well. One of the major benefits of writing these blogs this past year has been patrolling websites for new and interesting data. Every day I am privileged enough to sift through redOrbit’s articles and information to see if anything grabs me on that day. If redOrbit does not have anything that particularly tickles my interest, then I jump over to the Huffington Post or National Public Radio or CNN or National Geographic or any other number of websites to find something that provokes a reaction in me at that time. I learn and see so much of different websites. It is so fun!

And the information I learn and report on educates me as well. I am a better-engaged citizen, patient, and learner because of these blogs. Plus, writing is a part of who I am, so to be able to write and share with redOrbit is just the berries.

Yes, this past year as a redOrbit writer has been inspirational, informative, enjoyable, and life changing. I can’t wait to see what year two has in store for me.

Thank you, dear readers, for sharing this past year with me. I look forward to the upcoming year of learning and writing and sharing. Happy Anniversary!

Image Credit: Thinkstock.com

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Rayshell E. Clapper is an Associate Professor of English at a rural college in Oklahoma where she teaches Creative Writing, Literature, and Composition classes. She has presented her original fiction and non-fiction at several conferences and events including: Scissortail Creative Writing Festival, Howlers and Yawpers Creativity Symposium, Southwest/Texas Pop Culture Association/American Culture Association Regional Conference, and Pop Culture Association/American Culture Association National Conference. Her publications include Cybersoleil Journal, Sugar Mule Literary Magazine, Red Dirt Anthology, Originals, and Oklahoma English Journal. Beyond her written works, she successfully created a writer's group in rural Oklahoma to support burgeoning writers. The written word is her passion, and all she experiences inspires that passion. She hopes to help inspire others through her words.

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