Saturday, February 1, 2014

Why This Blog Exists...

It started as a humor project. I'd been writing pieces over at a web forum called Absolutewrite, submitting them for columns, cutting my baby writer's teeth when it occurred to me that to be a writer, to really be a writer, you had to write every day.  I wanted to be a humor columnist at the time, just like Erma Bombeck.  The mantra, "Write what you know" fit my life awash in toddlers.  Over time, I got asked to write columns for The Catholic Standard, Faith and Family and Catholic Digest and made inroads at other venues.  The blog became a rough draft board for pieces both humorous and thoughtful, and some slices of life preserved for the future because I don't scrapbook very well.  

Then I tried writing a book and that split my writing skills yet again.  Book, blog, columns.  Book, blog, columns.  I tried to run through all three but found you always are letting one of the three go, and as of late, it has been the blog.  New material comes less and less often, and I crib on the crutch of 7 Quick Takes and Small Successes Thursday.  Part of it is the maturation of my children, I can't write about my teens the way I did my toddlers, and the stuff I've done on toddlers, I've done for 8 years now, so I've said most of what goes through my head at some point.  They still keep me jumping and thinking, I'm not burnt out on reading bedtime stories or bubble bath or ice cream for dinner, but I also know to be a humorist, the goal is to always twist what is real to the level of absurd.   I think I've been too busy to take life as lightly as I ought, and thus the humor dried up for a time. 

The blog became more personal reflections on life, religion, politics and occasional nods to its former heyday of humor. The other thing that happened as a result of this blog, I submitted less for publication.  Magazines want fresh things never before seen, and once it's been blogged, it's on the internet, it is known, it counts.  My writing energies felt pulled in four directions.  Humor. Spiritual. Fiction. Political. I dabbled for a time, with poetry.   There are 365 poems tucked away in  a private poetry writing group called Small Stones: Writing Our Way Home, where I decided to craft a piece almost every day for a year.  All of it done in a fire and forget kind of way.  So the writing talent kept getting divided.

I don't know why, but the blog feels dry these days in all areas.  I suspect writing reflects a spiritual state, and there are seasons, times when cares of the world choke off inspiration, times when we can't chase a thought to deeper truths, times when we are dry, and times when everything feels like grist for the mill and words fall from one's fingertips like rain. I still need to write, but this blog has become something other than a humor blog, it's become a journal and an internet footprint of my mood, its highs and lows. I'm also thinking it might be time to remodel the look of it, so it becomes a less cluttered bit of internet.  To do this, I'm taking a week off, just to see if I miss it, to see if it adds or subtracts from what I am doing.   I'll let you know when I'm back next Sunday.

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