Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Behold the only thing greater than yourself

Reasons I didn’t start a blog until now: (1) chaotic insecurities (2) paranoid delusions of my eternally legacy being tarnished (3) arrested imaginative development (4) inability to come up with a clever name.

I started this blog today. Thus far I have managed to overcome one* of these limitations. This was no small task**, requiring months of brainstorming, talking to friends, experimenting and doing nothing for weeks at a time.

In order to help me determine an acceptable blog title, I (arbitrarily) decided on certain criteria I needed to reach:

Search Engine Optimization
Available Twitter handle (Not anymore! It’s unclear if I’ll use it, but @grantwritesgood now belongs to me.)
Relatively unoccupied acronym (GWG***)
Attract confused people looking learn how to write a grant proposal


Having a generally optimistic premise was particularly important. Although I’ll likely expand on this point in a later post, I’m really bothered by the overall negativity of the internet, the current state of comedy and American society as a whole. It seems like people can’t tell jokes anymore unless they involve tearing someone or something else down. I blame VH1.

More importantly, I find it much easier and enjoyable to write if the topic something that makes me happy. There is a great deal of work involved in formulating and voicing a clear opinion, and then putting that opinion in words. I’d much rather spend that time and energy being happy.


The title went through many incarnations over the last few months. Some of my favorite ideas were already taken (I would mention them, but I’m not giving anyone else the satisfaction) and others just didn’t seem like a good fit.

I had a couple get all the way to the creation process before abandoning them. I believe I started three other Twitter accounts, two other blogs (with zero posts) and wrote a handful of ledes to stories that I never finished.

I didn’t start to get to this point until my friend**** switched her “very popular” blog from wordpress to blogspot and got me thinking more about what I wanted to do with my own.

Not long after, my friend Betty and I started texting after a prolonged communiqué holiday (that rhymes). She suggested without provocation that I start a blog. Together we brainstormed names (read: threw [ideas] against the wall).

For me, being witty usually involves portmanteaus. Thus, I began pitching a series of letter piles such “gramazin,” “gramusement,” and “grantificating.”

Betty (swiftly and correctly) decided these sounded like blogs for septuagenarians who knit sweaters, watch Lawrence Welk and complain about the declining quality of appliances manufactured after 1964. I haven’t given up on portmanteaus, but for my blog title, they were out.

Next I tried thinking of alliterative words to combine with “Grant.” These ideas mostly had negative (grumbles, gruntles), arrogant (grand, great), or oddly rhythmic (groove, grace) connotations.

GrantWritesGood was suggested by Betty, who quickly added, “People might think it’s about writing grants, so maybe smart people will stumble upon your blog. Win!”

The entire conversation took less time than when she tried to explain to me how to use Spotify*****.  So hopefully I will have at least two readers, with that added bonus that they’re both smokin’ hot AND have lots of friends.


*Possibly 0.5, as I’m not entirely sure the name can universally be considered “clever”. It is (hopefully) at least clever to a small but devoted group of people. I like to call these people gravotees******

**See issues 1-3

***Others include: game-winning goal; girls with guns; Ghent PDF workgroup; Great Western Minerals Group, Global Warranty Group, some guy who likes politics and the Cubs, and the Geospatial Intelligence Standards Working Group*******

****For future reference, any time I use the word “friend” I’m referring to a girl. Any time I use the word “buddy,” I’ll be talking about a guy. I would like this to become the accepted terminology for everyone.

*****I still have not figured it out. Someday, though, with determination and a lot of help, I believe I will. I have that much confidence in my abilities.

******Subject to change

*******I’m bewildered about the inclusion “Intelligence” in the name but not the acronym.

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