Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Five Years of Rob

Since we're looking back at the history of Six LDS Writers this week, I figure I ought to blog (since, five years ago, I used to blog).

It's really amazing what has happened in the last five years. I think all six of us have gone through some really serious life changes, some terrible and some amazing.

I thought I'd go through some of my old posts--ones that I find particularly memorable or interesting or funny or whatever--and offer a little commentary. A Brief History of Rob, or Whatever.

Never Make Eye Contact, March 14, 2006
This was my first post on this blog, and I think it's interesting for one big reason: the entire post is about how I hate marketing. Of course, what I meant was "self-promotion", but at the time I didn't know the difference--and I certainly didn't guess that five years later I'd have an MBA in marketing.

Everyone's a Critic, March 16, 2006
This is one I'd forgotten about, but it's interesting for two reasons: first, it's in response to the first significant kerfuffle I'd gotten into on this blog, and second, it's discussing my plans for the LDS Fiction Review Database (a database containing all reviews of all LDS fiction everywhere). For people who know the history of the Whitney Awards, you'll remember that this database was my first (and misguided) attempt at helping LDS fiction as a whole. When my mindset shifted from pessimism ("LDS fiction needs to be fixed") to optimism ("LDS fiction is good, and we need to highlight the best of it") the Whitney Awards were born. You can read the first announcement about the Whitneys here.

Guest Blogging, July 21, 2006
An important discussion of an email Stephanie Black sent me.

For Love of the Game, October 10, 2006
It was with this post that I announced I had decided to return to grad school.

Wow, December 28, 2006
The announcement that Deseret Book was buying Seagull and Covenant. I added very little commentary here, but the discussion thread is really interesting in light of what has happened in the last four years. We were all afraid and unsure and speculating.

'Roid Rage, February 28, 2007
This was the first of several blogs about my as-yet undiagnosed pneumonia. At the time this was written, the doctor thought it was asthma. Fun fact: it was this pneumonia (undiagnosed for three months) that led to much of the financial trouble I had in grad school, which in turn led to much of the financial trouble I had after grad school, which in turn led to me writing Variant. It's a tenuous connection, certainly, but I still think it's interesting.

Resistance is Futile, May 8, 2007
After resisting for a year, I joined LDStorymakers, and then I dove in head first and tried to get everyone else to join. There were several blogs to this effect, but this is the best one.

Fake Interviews:
Spencer McKay

Lovers, Haters and Swingers, October 30, 2007
Once I was in business school, I started annoying everyone with business/marketing blogs. I still find them interesting, even if no one else cared.

2007 SixLDSWriters Christmas Letter, December 2007
This is one of my very favorite posts.

The Nephite Who Loved Me, May 21, 2008
A photoshopped movie poster for Sariah's upcoming book.

Minnesota: Currently Giving 106%, June 2006
In the summer of 2008 I lived in Minneapolis while doing a brand management internship with ConAgra Foods (for Orville Redenbacher popcorn). I blogged about it several times.

Architecture and Books -or- How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Tract Homes (and Harry Potter), July 29, 2008
This blog is notable for being the first time I used the phrase "who the hell cares?" in this LDS blog. But I was doing it in defense of a wonderful person when a moron criticized her taste in books.

Billings, August 19, 2008
I wrote this while stranded in Billings, Montana. I was broke and depressed. I followed it up the next day with this: On The Road Again

Max Robison Wells, January 3, 2009
We had a little baby. He's rad.

Barack Obama, January 2009
Even though I talk about politics a lot, I never really give much of an opinion. I did here.

Annette Lyon, Forgive Me Please, March 2009
I think this is my all-time favorite blog. Annette was blog touring and I'd agreed to write about her, but creating a graphic novel based on her covers seemed like more fun.

A Cry For Help, May 5, 2009
At long last, I finish grad school. I need a job.

You Can Never Go Home Again, June 2, 2009
Because it was 2009, jobs were few and far between, especially for dorks who'd just graduated. So, I and my wife and three kids moved back in with my parents.

The Float, July 2009
While living with my parents and being unemployed, I took over the creation of the Stake's parade float.

Time To Set Another Goal, August 25, 2009
This blog details my brother, Dan Wells, giving me the goal to write a sci-fi/fantasy book in two months, in anticipation of the World Fantasy Convention. It was this challenge that got me to write Variant, which got me the deal with HarperTeen, which changed my writing career forever.

The News, November 11, 2009
I announce that Variant is now represented by Sara Crowe.

My Heart Is Breaking, December 9, 2009
This is the first blog in which I discuss my chest pain--pain that would plague me for the next six months and was (eventually) diagnosed as Tietze Syndrome.

The End of Seven Months
After seven months of unemployment, I got a job! Hooray!

Major News: I May Hyperventilate
Variant sold to HarperTeen!

Things Never Work Out As Planned, October 10, 2010
I think this is about as good a place as any to end this 5 year recap. The point of this post was to explain how many of the things I'd expected--to get a great job right out of school, to not be unemployed, to not have major financial problems--hadn't happened. And yet, despite it not going to plan, everything has worked out splendidly. It's worked out differently, to be sure. And at times it's been painful and awful. But it's worked out nonetheless. I look back at Five Years Ago Rob, and he seems like such a different person; different goals and different plans. It kinda makes me wonder where I'll be in 2016.


At 3/30/2011 6:37 AM, Blogger Suzanne Lucas said...

Rob, you've got to start "interviewing" again. I re-read the one with Sariah and I had tears streaming down my face, I was laughing so hard.

I also thought, "Hey, I never got cheese sticks when I was in the MTC." And then I read the comments, and lo and behold, I made the exact same comment on that post.

Please more interviews. You can interview me. I'm Stephanie's sister, you know. I could "tell" you lots of stuff about her.

At 3/30/2011 12:09 PM, Blogger Valerie Ipson said...

Man, I have a lot of catching up to do.

At 3/30/2011 1:13 PM, Blogger Rebecca said...

I like your interviews and your political comentary. Actually, I just like it when you write, even if it is a list of movies you have watched, I like your voice when you write.

Oh, I am a follower, or will be after this post, you can check.

At 3/30/2011 1:15 PM, Blogger Kelsi Rose said...

Actually, Rebecca up there is me Kelsi Rose. I had a slight Google malfunction.

At 3/30/2011 1:39 PM, Blogger Annette Lyon said...

What a great trip down memory lane--lots of laughs, lots of thought-provoking moments, and so much more.

(I vote for doing another fake interview.)

At 3/30/2011 4:55 PM, Blogger David G. Woolley said...

What a crazy bio. Your interviews are hilarious (and your little trick about not answering the obvious question improved my own dialogue-writing skills).

Your graduation was a rush. Who didn't laugh during the trama of your float building? And this Variant thing is so very cool to watch.

Here's hoping that you stay with the frog blog even when you're busy writing another million-plus seller.

Everyone loves Tuesday's with the really smart frog.

At 3/31/2011 12:29 AM, Blogger Debra Erfert said...

The first time I read one of those interviews I so totally believed it was a real interview--I swear!!!

At 4/01/2011 5:19 PM, Blogger Heather B. Moore said...

great compilation of posts. I think I'll take the day off and read them all again :)

At 4/04/2011 2:07 PM, Blogger Jennie said...

You've faced a rocky road these past five years, but in the process I think you've collected a strong following that will serve you well in your future indeavers. By the way, Happy Birthday!


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