I have gazed at my navel. It is deep, but not unending. This is my 26th blog post and if I didn’t know myself, I’d refer myself to a good therapist. I’ve got another 5 drafts waiting to be rolled out. Conventional wisdom says that you should “write what you know”. Ouch. 5 posts down the road and I might be tapped out.
My blog posts started out meekly, touching lightly on subjects that I had an interest in but that were not as personal. Now I’ve got skin in the game. The ball has started rolling and I’m a little worried about where it might end up. I’ve only lived 45 years, so at some point I might need to be a real writer and come up with original, non-navel oriented writing. Frightening.
When I started researching blog writing, it was to meet a goal: do something, anything that would make me write regularly. I’m already discovering the pitfalls of having such a friendly community. You start to hunger for the numbers, the praise, the mere acknowledgement that what you are doing is enjoyable to others. You start imagining your words through other people’s eyes. You start editing with an audience in mind. Your voice shifts slightly with painful self-consciousness and your narcissism is rewarded for acting out. Writing starts to feel less natural, less enjoyable and more like work.
Maybe it’s my midwestern work ethics. I hunger for the struggle, the indicator that tells me I have earned what I have reaped. It’s not supposed to be easy or fun or fulfilling without the blood, sweat and tears. I have a feeling that the “struggling writer” portion of the program is about to begin. This is mildly better than the “starving artist” plan. All that navel gazing made me hungry.