While 2009 was a wild and crazy year for me and my fine blog – it more importantly introduced me to so many other amazing people who are a heck of a lot smarter than I am. I read just as much as I write, and in 2010 I hope to sway the balance beam even more toward ‘reading’ (more on that later this week). There’s no way I could include every awesome blog out there, so instead, I wanted to share just a few of the best, writers to look out for as we cross the threshold into the next decade. If you haven’t already – go subscribe to every one of these – You’ll be glad you did.
World’s Strongest Librarian
His description: World’s Strongest Librarian is a blog for anyone looking to get stronger, healthier, smarter, and who wants to enjoy every day of their lives. It’s also crazy and scattered–like most of our lives. Josh is an “aspiring strongman, bookish nerd, twitchy guy with Tourette’s Syndrome, devoted family man, tearer of phonebooks, and humble librarian. A tall, thin paradox wrapped in thick glasses”.
My description: Whether he’s writing book reviews or teaching life lessons through emotional and thoughtful video posts, Josh has gone a long, long way with his blog in a very short time. His guest-blogging strategy has been a smashing success, including the landing of a book deal ala a connection with Seth Godin. Give me whatever Kool-Aid this guy is drinking!
The Middle Finger Project
Her description: It’s about encouraging you to stop wasting your life engaging in meaningless, trivial activities day in and day out–like sitting in a cube for 8 hours a day at a job you despise, typing up useless reports that no one is going to read anyway–to inspire you to start taking your dreams seriously,and to start doing things that inspire and excite you (wants), rather than things that drain and bore you (shoulds). It is my assertion that the shoulds are where we go all wrong. It’s the shoulds that are causing us to lead lives of mediocrity, lives that we are unhappy with but don’t know, exactly, how to fix.
My description: Relative new-kid-on-the-block Ashley Ambirge hasn’t taken her long to take a major splash in the crazyawesomeinspiringchestbumping group of bloggers. The name really says it all. Her post, Dealt the bad hand in life? Learn How to Snub Your Circumstances & End Up With a Royal Flush had me leaving this comment:
I feel like I have to go and ride a unicorn into a lightning storm through the mists of Avalon, or go withdraw everything from my savings account, dump it into my living room, and swim around in the money ala the opening credits of Duck Tales. (Woo-hoo)
Yeah, enough said. The TMF Project has quickly turned into one of my favorite blogs, by far. Check it out, or, you know, don’t and be lame.
Life After College
Her description: There’s no manual for the real world. Find tips and resources for life, work, money, happiness, personal growth, productivity, and more. My mission is to provide simple, practical tips that help you focus on the BIG picture of your life…not just the details.
My description: Jenny Blake is probably definitely one of my favorite people – her personality shines through in everything she does and she has a way of making you want to be more and do more with your life. Where she stands out is in taking it a step further, providing the tools for success (literally) with templates, spreadsheets, documents, the works. It’s one thing to preach, it’s another to practice, and Jenny clearly does both, time and time again.
Corn on the Job
Summary: Rich DeMatteo’s aptly titled Corn on the Job is an awesome resource for job seekers, HR enthusiasts, and everyone in between. I had the pleasure of pimping out Rich’s blog design, giving his awesome writing style an aesthetic face lift, and he has really been on a roll to round out 2009. He’s excelling by being approachable, actively engaged, and letting his passion for the people shine through in everything he does. It’s only the beginning for a long and prosperous future ahead for him and his ‘Cornheads’.
LAF | Lauren Fernandez
Her description: Writing and driving conversation (her words, not mine people)
My description: Even though she’s a Packer fan, I can’t help but love what Lauren Fernandez (aka LAF) has done and continues to do over on her blog. Writing about everything and anything PR/marketing/Social Media/life related – she’s a perfect example of someone who’s been through a hell of a lot, yet holds her chin high and has one of the best attitudes you’ll ever find in a person. Her blog is a direct reflection of someone who means business, but knows how to kick back with a beer and a brat on a Sunday. She was voted “Best Up & Coming Blog” in the 2009 PR Blog Awards – and I think it’s safe to say that the up and coming came and went. She’s here to stay and poised to continue the pace into 2010.
Man vs. Debt
His description: Sell your crap. Pay off your debt. Do what you love.
My description: The line above sums it up nicely – but what I love about Adam’s approach is that he makes the whole personal finance location independence thing seem not so scary, and for the average Joe like me, it’s refreshing to read a blog that tackles some difficult issues in a compelling and downright exciting way. Baker has some big plans ahead for 2010 (in addition to total world domination) – and it’s going to be exciting, from the outside looking in, to watch things unfold.
Summary: Doniree takes a personal approach with her blog, and she does it well. She’s not all “look at me! look at me!” – she’s tasteful in her approach and leaves you clinging to every word. It’s the mark of a truly great writer when you can write about yourself and relate it to so many. She recently quit her job and is moving across the country (wait…doesn’t that sound familiar?) and has a bright bright future ahead of her. I couldn’t be more excited for all the good things coming her way. If you want to follow someone who’s passionate about life and LIVING, look no further.
His description: I’m a believer of youth in business, a lover of indie rock, a writer, listener, and news junkie. I am interested in thinking critically about the world today. I am interested in searching for solutions to our problems. I am interested in doing business better—with more passion and for the sake of our customers, not at their expense. And that’s what this blog is about.
My description: I just recently (literally a couple weeks ago) stumbled across Andrew and ‘Wordpost’ and I’m already loving what I see. Part of blogging is about new discoveries, and this is one of those gems I’m glad I found now (wish I found sooner) so I can be a part of the bandwagon moving forward. His unique perspective on the world of business and Social Media keeps me coming back. Check this guy out if you know what’s good for you!
His description: I use my blog to start conversations that matter – to make my readers think about what’s important and then take the neccesary steps to live a better life, build a better community, and become a better person. I hope to challenge you, inspire you, and give you practical ideas to do something with your life – your one, unique, crazy, meaningful life.
My description: It’s amazing to me that more people aren’t already reading Sam’s blog. This social entrepreneur, Gen Y thought leader, and soon-to-be dad is constantly putting out great writing that makes you think, and more importantly, makes you want to get out there and do something. I love this line from one of his recent posts: “A lot changes in a year. But maybe not a whole lot does over the course of 2,000 of them.” – Talk about saying a lot without saying a lot – head over and follow this guy closely into the new year!
His description: I started this blog to explore what’s possible in lifestyle design and to help people realize that you don’t have to live how everyone else does. There is a richer, more passionate life waiting for you outside of the typical deferred-life plan of the status quo.
My description: I recently became an avid reader of Corbett’s blog and you can never get enough of these “sucking the marrow out of life” blogs. In fact, we need more of them. We need as much motivation as we can to get off our asses and start doing what we want to do today – not tomorrow – today.
Whether you’re living life without pants, throwing your middle finger up to the world, or journeying on your pursuit to freedom, there’s a lot of good to go around, and plenty to take with you into the new decade!
What are some of your favorite blogs from 2009? Which ones should we be following into 2010?
Stay tuned tomorrow as I take a look at 10 valuable life lessons learned this year.