This anniversary notice popped up sometime in late-ish October and I haven’t gotten around to remarking upon it until now. The reason is simple: first there was NaNoWriMo, and then I forgot.
So, here’s a brief summary of my first year in blogging.
One year and a couple months ago, I officially launched this blog as writing insurance. I announced that I would be participating in NaNoWriMo 2015. Roughly 30 days later, I also got to announce that I had won, yay!
A part of me feels like I haven’t done much else. That’s not technically true, of course. I did Monday Musing and Wednesday Words of Wisdom for a while. I did Sunday Gratitudes for even longer. I did a reasonable job keeping up on reading all the blogs I’ve followed and even made a decent effort to comment on them.
Over this past year, this blog has changed a bit. First of all, I changed the theme. I can no longer remember what it looked like originally, so if you weren’t around at the time you’re going to have to take my word for it that anything is different. I’m not sure how many of you have been with me that far back but I am proud to say that I currently have 132 followers, 1940 views, 989 visitors, a best views ever record of 50 on March 21st, 2016, and my most popular day and time is Wednesday at 10am PST.
Here’s the thing… In some ways, I feel like I’ve run out of things to say. I haven’t, but it’s still how I feel. Although in the big picture I’ve grown more confident and happy in this past year and a bit I am still intimidated by sharing certain things. Especially my creative writing. Here are some reasons why:
1. It’s scary.
To say I’m creative and that I trust my instincts enough to publish what I’ve written is a big deal for my. I’m the compulsive edit-while-I-write type — which, incidentally, is what makes winning NaNoWriMo two years in a row such a huge victory. Even when I regularly published fanfic it was very rare that I posted anything before running it past a beta reader once or twice. I had one dedicated beta for my Hitchhiker’s Guide stuff but shopped around to slightly larger pool for other works, and after a while they all learned that when I meant fine toothed comb I really super duper meant it. Also, they learned that I would make edits and send it back, asking if it was better now. (Fun fact: I also tried to do this with a philosophy professor and a 30 page research paper once. I think she tapped out after one round the first five pages, but even that was enormously helpful.)
2. It’s a publishing issue.
Did reason number one suggest that I’m an overly cautious person? Because I am. One of the reasons I don’t post a lot of my original creative works is because once it’s on the internet, I can’t send it to a publisher and get it in print. (If I am incorrect, someone for the love of dog please tell me.) On one hand, this is silly because most of the things I might post are short little whatevers that probably wouldn’t be published anyway. On the other, instead of writing that type of thing I’ve lately been working on drafts of big long novels that I really do want to see in print some day. Even if I self-publish the latter stuff, I still don’t want a version of it floating around on the internet.
3. I’m kind of a weenie.
This is included as a reason because, for heaven’s sake, I have hidden caches of my writing scattered across a number of different sites. I still have old stuff up on FanFiction.net, the original works version of that site (which you can tell I used incredibly often based on my laser-pinpointing of the name from memory), Archive of our Own, Writing.com, and LiveJournal. I also recently started posting things on Prose.com — newer works, mostly read over by my partner a few times before I hit go. So it’s not like I’m not sharing anything. It’s just something about WordPress that psychs me out for some reason.
That’s how I feel. Now, there are two questions I want to ask my readers at this point.
First, I’ve been listening to an audiobook copy of The Martian from my local library. Does it show? If you’ve read/listened to the book, or even just watched the movie, don’t be shy about chiming in. I ask because I tend to write however I sound in my head, and right now Mark Watney’s voice is bouncing around in there. (Just be glad you weren’t around when I read Grapes of Wrath in high school.)
Second, where should I go from here? Because I’m really not sure. I have ideas worth expressing, experiences worth sharing, and creative visions worth putting into action, but I don’t know how I want to organize them and funnel them into interesting blog posts. So I’m opening this up to whoever’s out there. What do you think?
In conclusion, thank you to everyone who keeps coming around, reading, and commenting. That means a lot to me. In general it’s been a weird year, but 2017 will be better and I want to be a better blogger.