I’ve been a quiet blogger as of late. That isn’t the same as having thoughts on things, or needing to express myself in writing. As you probably know if you’re reading this, I’ve done quite a bit of writing this year. I’ve published roughly 198,000 words of fiction with another 90k or so on the way soon enough. I guess, looking at the stats for the blog this year, I’ve published bout 30,000 words here, too. That’s not actually very much now that I’m thinking about it.
I’ve been negligent. I know that.
For some of you reading this, you’ve been part of my journey as a writer for years. You’ve followed the blog since way back in 2010, when I first signed up for Reverb. You’ve watched me pull myself up from the depths of depression and forge ahead to new life over and over again. You’ve been an incredibly supportive group, and I’ve pretty much ignored you for awhile now.
It was a dick move– not an intentional one, but a dick move nonetheless. I know that, too.
I do miss blogging. Honestly, at one point writing the blog was the most important thing I did every day. I got out of the habit because I thought I was doing something more important or just because I needed to spend a bit of time nestled in the warm embrace of self-loathing. Man, that was stupid. I can’t get a real self-loathing funk without expressing exactly how self-loathy I am. I should remember that.
Fortunately for me, the wonderful Kat McNally never kicked my lazy ass off her Reverb Mailing list. So, each year I still get all the emails with the prompts and the links, and the wonderful community. For the last couple of years, I’ve only halfheartedly tried to reclaim the magic from that first year, so of course I never succeeded. Hey, look, I know that, too.
So, then in March of this year, I published Choices. I had suddenly accomplished something I had always wanted to accomplish. I worked extremely hard at it, too. I found out about indie-publishing, and the community and world that came with it. I found out about readers and responsibilities and image and all that bullshit. In my way that I do, I began to obsess.
Suddenly, I knew that I wasn’t a good enough me for anyone to really care about. See, as some of you probably already know, I’ve got issues, enough for an entire magazine sales fundraising campaign. I’m not very good to myself, and I figured that you wouldn’t be good to me, either.
Damn, that was stupid. I know that now, too.
So, in the way that I do, I just hid. I hide from problems. That’s me. Unless someone else is depending on me, I am a total ostrich. I am definitely one of those people that freezes in fear and stays statue-still until the danger and opportunity has passed. I am a giant fucking wimp.
You want to know how much of a wimp? I almost deleted the word fucking from that last sentence. Hell, I almost deleted every instance of the f-word from the Seven Keys Saga. How fucking weird would that have been?
I have to admit, though, that the healing power of blogging isn’t what finally kicked my ass into gear to write this tonight. I had some things that I did today– very important things– that I fucked up. My brain tried to panic, and I turned to blogging to keep it from crushing me. That’s all true.
But there was something else, too.
I also listened to this episode of the Self Publishing Podcast.
Now, if you’re a writer (many of you reading this probably are) and you’re not listening to SPP, you should. But, for those of you who couldn’t give a flying-man-tit less about writing, publishing, or anything even remotely smelling like the “work” side of books, let me sum up what I learned from this particular episode.
It’s okay to be yourself. It’s okay to open up and let your audience– no matter how small– in.
It reminded me why I was able to finish writing a damn book in the first place.
It was because I met people that supported me by just telling the truth on the internet and consequences be damned!
Of course, there are still things I don’t think I want to talk about. For example, there are plenty of recent political topics that I don’t think I could even come close to addressing without sounding like a complete jackass, but there are definitely some things I can share with you about me.
And how to be self-indulgent? I know that almost as well as I know how to be repetitive.
So, Welcome to my #Reverb14. I hope you enjoy it.