The PaperGirl 10-Point Pledge.

posted in: Art, Work 18
I promise this, on an airplane, so you know I'm serious.
I promise this, on an airplane, so you know I’m serious.

This blog has a purpose. It’s had the same purpose since 2006, though there was a year I didn’t write at all, though all the entries from the old site are lost on a dusty server someplace. (If I didn’t have a hard copy of every last one of those entries I might not stop crying till I drowned — it’s not that they’re that great, it’s that they are a record of my life and what else do I have?)

John Dewey, the 20th century American philosopher, once said, “If you are deeply moved by some experience, write a letter to your grandmother. It will help you to better understand the experience, and it will bring great pleasure to your grandmother.”

That’s why I make this. Dewey nailed the best reason to write anything. PaperGirl is me, deeply moved by the experience of life, writing to you, my hypothetical grandmother. You look fabulous, gramma!

But how to do it right? How to balance my privacy and your interest? How to wisely navigate my public job (decorum = critical) with my desire to tell the truth about absolutely everything? (Good writing must tell the truth, but the whole truth? I refuse to speak of my lingerie preferences, much as I’d like to.) How to make sure you stay? Images? Guest posts? Advertisements? All these questions are valid and because they are innumerable, the best way to form the form of the blog is to make a pledge.

And so.

The PaperGirl 10-Point Pledge:

1. I pledge to deliver a fresh paper at least six times a week.

2. I pledge no clickable links, save for references to previous PaperGirl posts. When you’re here, you’re safe from outside tugs. We’ll have a moment, you and I. There is one exception: should I reference an artist, a piece of art, or the work of a writer that ethically must be attached to the post, I will do so — judiciously.

3. I pledge one image per post.

4. I pledge honesty. See No. 5.

5. I pledge class. Details including (but not limited to) my menstrual cycle, my sexual exploits, business matters, or other people’s matters will not be published. Oblique references can and will be made to the above.

6. I pledge to ask anyone mentioned in the blog if I may use their name. If they do not give permission, I will change their name. Direct quotes published in print or online are, by journalistic standards, fair game. See this post about mean people on the Internet. Suckas!

7. I pledge to give you a nice mix of heartfelt, funny, and weird. I will vary the posts so that you will never say, “Geez, that blog is a real drag” or — perhaps worse — “That blog used to be honest and like, sincere, and now it’s just goofy.”

8. I pledge to share what I learn. Poetry, sage words I come across, recommendations for places, people, art, and life choices, etc. — if I learn it, you’ll know it.

9. I pledge to value my readers. Every last one. Even if they don’t ever comment or say hi on Facebook.

10. I pledge to love writing today as much as I did when I was six.

Your PaperGirl

18 Responses

  1. Kathy
    | Reply

    I am going to be a grandma in about a month, so I will read and listen to you as one. Thank you.

    • Mary Fons
      | Reply

      Kathy, first of all: yaaaaaaay!!!!! eeeeeee!!!!!

      Second of all, can I tell the story of how we met? I think I told it long ago, but it’s time for a revisit. You are still so incredible to me.


  2. tanzie
    | Reply

    love you posts

  3. Carrie
    | Reply

    When I see a new PaperGirl post when I check my Bloglovin app, I always save it for last so I can savor your words. A sincere thank you for each and every post.

  4. Carol
    | Reply

    MF…your blog is always my favorite read and like Carrie (previous post) I save it for last ’cause it’s the best. Words at their best on PaperGirl…drawing us in and leaving us wanting more….thanks Mary.

  5. Deanna
    | Reply

    I love reading your blog, it’s very thoughtful and interesting. I also enjoy watching you on love of quilting. Love the mom daughter thing!

  6. Diane Mosher
    | Reply

    …I agree with what has been said…I look forward to the notice on my facebook wall that there is a new PaperGirl article…I have enjoyed reading your blog since we “met” in Grand Forks, North Dakota a few months ago 🙂

  7. Christa Quilts
    | Reply

    Ha ha! I love reading what you have to say – both about quilting and about your perspectives on life in general. You are truly talented. Keep ’em coming!

  8. Kim
    | Reply

    So many times a day one can say “Nothing is ever what it seems”. Well now “at least 6 times a week” we can say someone is exactly what she seems to be. Love the pledge! Honesty, integrity and class, that’s you Mary. I enjoy the varied subject matter all 6 times a week!

  9. Kathy@KayakQuilting
    | Reply

    Mary, I would enjoy your writing even if you never made a reference to quilting!

  10. Marie-Claude Lajoie
    | Reply

    Fabulous you are. I’m really glad I found your blog. I don’t keep it for last but it’s in my favourites folder.

    Six times a week is a lot of work though, isn’t it? Don’t get burned out, please!

    Marie-Claude Lajoie

    • Mary Fons
      | Reply

      Impossible! Thanks, Marie-Claude. And everyone! 🙂

  11. Andres
    | Reply

    Now I can’t be one of those readers who doesn’t comment. So…hi!

  12. Sherri
    | Reply

    Mary – I found you on PBS, with your mom, on Fons & Porter. I follow you on Quilty & PaperGirl. You are a true talent, both as writer and quilt artist & teacher. I very much enjoy reading your spin on life. Keep on Keepin’ On!

  13. merie
    | Reply

    Count me in as one that saves your posts for a quiet moment! I like your pledge.

  14. […] Though I have made my pledge and try my hardest to maintain its integrity, from time to time, we must jettison our rules and regulations to celebrate unpredictability and joy in life. Today, I link to the outside web because this nifty review is cause for celebration. If you’d like to see what the fancy critic said, you can click right over here.  […]

  15. […] will be following this story as it unfolds. My rules state that I will only ever include one picture per post, but all the pictures I take of the Iowa […]

  16. […] The PaperGirl Pledge says that I only ever include one picture per entry. Rules are made to be broken in extreme situations. Today is an extreme situation. And the next few days will be Small Wonders Central on the ol’ PG. If you’re not a quilter, I guarantee you will not be bored. The fabric is only one part of the Small Wonders empire! So much more to tell. Until then, enjoy the fruits of many peoples’ loving labor. […]

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