Update note added Sunday 4th October 2015
It’s Sunday morning and I’ve had a break from blogging for a few days. It was a helpful time because despite the reasons for writing this post on Wednesday night, I have missed it. A few days ago I watched an old JK Rowling interview where she was asked if she’d continue writing after Harry Potter. She didn’t miss a beat in her response:
Of course I will. I have to write. For my own mental health I need to Write.
These words brought me to tears because they resonated with me so powerfully. It’s in me to write. It’s my knee jerk reaction when I’m most content, most sad and feeling most lost. It’s how I process.
It just took writing this and taking a step back to realise. I still find the blogging world overwhelming and I have to keep myself in check not to compare myself to the cool kids. But as long as I’m writing then I’m A-Okay.
Written on Wednesday 30th September 2015:
This week I have very nearly stopped blogging.
I’m not uninspired. I possibly have too much I want to write about. My stats have not dropped. This baby blog is growing steadily in its’ infancy, month by month. I’ve not received any criticism for my writing. People have been lovely and kind and encouraging. To think that people actually enjoy reading my blog makes me feel all warm and fuzzy. And a little surprised if truth be known. It’s huge bonus to the original reason for starting this new blog: Simply because writing makes me happy.
That was way less cheesy in my head.
I have heaps of stuff to write about and more and more people seem to be enjoying it. The conditions to keep building this little piece of cyber space seem perfect don’t they? So why on earth would I consider scrapping the whole thing?
Maybe because more and more people are enjoying it. There’s a brilliant blogger/vlogger Charlotte and she named her blog Write Like No One’s Watching (go and check her out, you’ll love her too). This sentiment was so appropriate for me because for a time it’s what I took so much pleasure in doing. Writing like no one was watching. Or reading. It didn’t matter if a blog post was naff. It didn’t matter if I wrote 5 days on the trot and then not for over a week. It didn’t matter because I was writing for an audience of one. To make sense of the world around me and to capture precious moments that I was all too scared I’d forget otherwise.
Then I made the decision to tell people I was blogging again. I categorically did not do that so that people would read it. I did it so that it was not a secret or to become a big deal that I was writing again after the collapse of my first marriage. I was a little tired of creeping around, becoming consumed with what people, who weren’t in my world anymore, thought of me. Blogging again, openly so, gave me my voice again. And it felt bloody great.
Until it registered in my teeny tiny brain that people are actually reading it.
Don’t get me wrong. I love that I write something and people get something out of it. But it quickly shifted from writing because I love it and people enjoy it…To writing so people enjoy it. My focus became skewiff.
I started writing for completely the wrong reason.
Statistics are both friend and foe to a blogger. It’s great to keep you going when you’ve lost your mojo. But it’s a pain in the derriere for messing with your perspective. You reach a milestone and it feels great, until you want to reach that next milestone. I recently realised I was doing this. I wanted to pull my arm off just to beat myself with it. Since when did it become about numbers? Since when did I become so driven by my ego?? I didn’t like this part of me. I didn’t want a love of writing to turn into this. To turn me into this.
I started to compare myself to other bloggers. I tried to keep up with an unrealistic blogging schedule and social media engagement because I so wanted to be a part of this blogging community. These women are funny and real, and well, I guess I found myself back in the school yard wanting to be one of the cool kids. To just be one of them.
Let me tell you, there’s nothing cool about grabbing the laptop at 6.30am to make sure a post is uploaded on time. That does not make me one of the cool kids. Or if it does I’m nor sure I want to be cool.
I’m also really really knackered. I developed writing fever over the summer holidays and found my stride. And then it was back to school and reality hit hard. Working full time running around after young children and then having two littlies to love and care for when I get home means by 8pm I’m well and truly cream crackered. I have so much to write about but even if I wasn’t so distracted by readership, I’m too sleepy to find the right words. Or any words really. Sometimes I just use grunts in the evening to communicate with Mr C.
In life I’m a definite flight risk. When it get’s complicated or challenging I want to run to a happier place where everyone spends their days picking flowers, playing with glitter and talking to fluffy woodland creatures. I guess right now I’m feeling the pull to run from the blog before my writing turns to utter crud and people want to throw rotten vegetables at me.
Or before I fall out of love with writing. I think I’d rather have a squashed tomato in the face.
I think a long holiday somewhere warm, lying by a pool and reading a good book would do wonders for my perspective. Mr C is not convinced by my reasoning. Perhaps just a couple of good night’s sleep and a lazy weekend at home might to the trick instead. Fingers crossed!
Mrs C x
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