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Finish Line

The Finish Line

By Rachel L. West, MSW, LMSW
The Political Social Worker

We are approaching the finish line. This is the final day of the 2013 WordCount Blogathon. As some of you know I have been participating in the blogathon which is run by Michelle Rafter.

The rules of the blogathon are pretty simple. You have to register your blog then you just have to publish something on your blog every day throughout June.

WordCount Blogathon Logo

WordCount Blogathon logo

I chose to participate in the blogathon because during the months of April and May I had gotten lazy when it came to updating The Political Social Worker. I think in May I only published three articles.  Ideally I should be posting original content three days a week. So I signed up for the blogathon as a sort of boot camp to wipe me back into shape.

It wasn’t nearly as hard to post everyday as some might believe. Actually it started to get a bit more difficult in the final week. I think one thing that I benefited from was that I work best under pressure. So knowing I had to have a post published before midnight helped me to buckle down.

The blogathon led me to revisit the idea of using an editorial calendar. This was something I had tried to utilize back when The Political Social Worker first moved to Word Press, but it quickly fell by the wayside. I still do not find it to be the best method for me. What I do find helpful is establishing a couple of weekly or monthly columns.

A while back I started doing Bits & Pieces which is a column that appears every Saturday.  Bits & Pieces is where I share varies articles related to social work and politics.

This month I also introduced two new columns; E-Advocacy and Best Tweets in Social Work and Politics.

E-Advocacy will be a weekly series that focuses on using technology in advocacy, campaigning, and community organizing work. It will be published on Tuesdays. Additionally, I am working on developing a workshop around this topic. On a related note I will be writing a monthly e-advocacy tip for ACOSA which will be sent out in their email blast.

Best Tweets in Social Work and Politics will publish every Monday. It will feature tweets from social workers and politicos.

What also helped me get through the month was that we had a few major news stories break that were related to this blog’s mission.

Sadly, this month New Jersey’s long serving Senator and Democratic legend Frank Lautenberg passed away. Shortly after his passing Governor Chris Christie announced that there would be a special election held in October. Newark, New Jersey Mayor Cory Booker then officially declared his candidacy.

Last week the New York Senate failed women in the state by essentially killing the Women’s Equality Act. This, only a couple of days after WEA passed the state assembly.

This past week alone we saw the Senate pass a comprehensive immigration reform bill.  While far from ideal it is the closest we have come to getting an immigration reform law passed in years. Now the House will have to take up the legislation. Many have doubts about it passing the House as a number of GOP Congressman have spoken out against the bill in public.

Then of course on Thursday the Supreme Court of the United States found the Defense of


photo credit: JoshuaMHoover via photopin cc

Marriage Act (DOMA) to be unconstitutional. As a result the Federal government will now have to recognize same-sex marriages. SCOTUS also kicked the Prop 8 case back to California. Because an appellate court already ruled Prop 8 to be Unconstitutional, this meant that same-sex  marriage in the state would resume. Sure enough by Friday California county clerks were ordered to begin issuing marriage licenses.

So what did I learn from the blogathon? Basically that there is no reason why I can’t publish at least three good pieces a week. I certainly feel that participating has helped get me back into shape and I plan on actively updating this site.

photo credit: jayneandd via photopin cc

Posted by Rachel L. West

In addition to being the founder of The Political Social Worker blog, I am a consultant. My consulting practice offers advocacy and community outreach solutions to nonprofits, social good organizations, and private practitioners. Additionally, I offer career coaching to macro social work students and professionals.

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