In this meme, I explain how my blog has evolved, in five steps, giving examples.
1. The Utah Valley Monitor days: Some may recall that this blog started out as a column in a student paper called the Utah Valley Monitor (which I was invited to write as a BYU alum). That's where I got my crazy URL that I have never bothered to change. So from the beginning this blog was written with the idea of having a Mormon theme and audience, thus as light, friendly communication between Mormons and atheists. Most of my primary topics (motherhood, living in France, book reviews, Mormonism/ex-Mormonism) trace back to my earliest columns. Here's a blog entry that really captures this stage: Cultural Mormon.
2. The RfM period: While this blog was still an archive for my column (before the Monitor went belly-up), I used to like to read and post to the popular "Recovery from Mormonism" message board. (Just for fun -- it's not like I felt like my Mormon past was something I needed to "recover" from...) There I discovered that some other exmos (like JLO/substrate and Sideon) also had blogs, so we linked together to form a little network called "Outer Blogness." For a while, then, I was writing posts tailored specifically to the RfM audience. A good example of this was cults vs. cult-like behavior where I thought I'd have a little fun with the RfM'ers by challenging their beloved stance that Mormonism is a "cult".
3. The "digging through the archives" days: (This was actually more-or-less concurrent with the RfM phase.) I figured that my blog was a good place to post the "best of" projects I'd done years earlier including mathematical artwork, a childhood novel, a Student Review article on "Why I Hate Church", naked comics, and me on Star Trek.
4. The "enter politics" wave: For a long time, I'd been deliberately avoiding controversial political issues because, well, I wanted everyone to like me. After a while, though, I got bored of that stance and decided to dive in and write about politics even if some readers may disagree with me. A good example of this would be my first porn-and-feminism article yes means yes.
5. The novel-goes-live!!! Before starting my Utah Valley Monitor column (see #1 above), I had just finished writing my novel Exmormon. From the beginning of this blog/column I talked about the novel and promoted it here. Then one fateful day I decided that I am so
So that's my story! I guess now comes the tagging part. Unfortunately it's a little tricky to find someone who hasn't already done this one and is in the mood to do it. I'm kind of tempted to tag Sideon since his blog covers the same time period and has had some related evolution (plus the last time he tagged me for a meme, I didn't quite get around to doing the meme, oops...). Then, while I'm at it, perhaps some of the other charter members of "Outer Blogness": La, Notamormon, Gunner, Eric, plus some other early members Rebecca, Mason is free and Bull.