Sunday, 5 July 2015

A Lot Less Time

I have to admit that getting HBIC Headquarters up to the standard I want has occupied a number of weekends. Renovations consume a lot of time when one does them him or herself, and I've been knee-deep into renovations. I love doing it, but it occupies a lot of time that I could be using elsewhere such as HBIC. And now, more of my time will be eaten up as I've been enlisted to call balls, strikes, and outs for the softball league in which I umpire.

Thanks to the league adding a couple of new teams, they needed an umpire on Monday nights. That assignment started last week, and will run through to the end of the season. This past week, I was assigned a second evening of softball action as one of the elder statesmen in our stable of umpires has opted for surgery to correct an injury he's had for some time, so I'm taking over his Tuesday night assignment. So much for being an extra umpire this season.

Because my Monday and Tuesday nights are being occupied by umpiring, my weekends are filled with renovation work, and Thursdays are always radio show night, it leaves very little time for writing and researching. Researching is 90% of great writing, and I love doing research because it's where one finds the amazing details in hockey's rich history.

So here's where you come in! I want you to write. I want you to find a hockey topic you love, and write like there's no tomorrow. Write whatever you like - funny, serious, crazy, anything - as long as it's about hockey. Write often. Submit it to HBIC, and I'll post it. Your voice matters as much as mine does, and very rarely do I receive reader submissions, so let's change that. Let's get the writing going, and let's have a discussion. History has shown that we learn my by sharing and discussing, so let's make this summer one of knowledge sharing and information overload!

I have always enjoyed the interaction with readers because when all the layers are stripped away, we're all fans of this incredible game. It doesn't matter that I have a blog. I'm no better or worse than anyone reading this. It's all about the passion for the game. Being that we're fans, we both have that passion, and that's from where good writing comes!

Maybe you're passionate about women's hockey. Excellent! I could really use some additional insight on the game. Do you like minor-league or junior hockey? Perfect! I can always use more great stories outside of the NHL ranks. What I want is passion. A passion for the game. A passion for the nuances and intricacies of this great game. I doesn't need to be a seven-part on-going series of articles - it can be if you like - and it doesn't have to be a 10,000-word thesis on the game. All I want is a passionate article about hockey. That's all. I know it's in you!

Now I want to be clear: I can't pay you. This blog earns me nothing as I'm extremely selective about advertising on HBIC. However, that doesn't mean that you can't advertise a product that you own - write an article about it! If you're looking for a paid writing job, though, HBIC cannot help you there. I make nothing, so I pay the same in turn to anyone who writes for this blog. Would I like to? Hell yes, but right now it's not in the cards. This is a blog fueled by passion, not by dollars.

I also don't expect articles on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis nor will I give you deadlines. You write when you can, and I'll fill in the gaps. And don't feel like you can't rip me a new one if you've disagreed with an article I've written - that's the passion and discussion I want! Still interested? Excellent!

Have at it, and fire it in to me here. Again, it can be about ANYTHING related to hockey! You will get full credit for the writing, and I'll vouch for you if you want to use it as a submission piece for a writing job. Feel free to use this online soapbox as a way for you to get published. As I've always maintained, this blog is "of the people, by the people, for the people" and you're a major part of why I love doing this thanks to the interaction.

Sometimes, though, we can all use a little help. And I'm asking for that today from the people I trust the most when it comes to excellent hockey chatter.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

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