My Recent Aha Moment
So, at a farewell dinner a couple weeks ago for a former creative writing friend (all the way back from my undergrad days, so he got to read the supremely crappy stuff as opposed to just mildly crappy), the subject of this blog came up.
He said, “I’ve been reading your blog…”
(Someone actually reads this thing? Score!)
“…and it’s hilarious…”
(Someone actually thinks it’s funny? Score!)
(This was too good to be true. I just knew there had to be a “but.”)
“…I just feel like there’s something more you can do with it or get out of it for yourself career-wise.”
Well…that didn’t go exactly where I thought it was going, but that’s probably for the best.
As it turns out, this was nothing I hadn’t already been thinking of; I’ve been torn between the personal and professional for a while now. In fact, I’ve been asking Jesus for the answers. Unfortunately — or fortunately — Jesus has more balls than me and, were he in my shoes, he would’ve already connected this blog in some way to his resume and/or professional website. Hence, why he is one of my heroes.
But alas, that’s just not me. Maybe it’s the fact that I’ve pretty much always been a private person. Maybe it’s the fact that I think there should be some standards to which people (myself included) are held to somewhere nowadays. Or maybe it’s just the fact that, from time to time, I need to be able to vent to my peeps about douchebags who suck — some of whom are part of my professional life.
Anyway, point is, I’ve come to the conclusion that it would likely not serve me well to connect this blog with my professional endeavors.
Yet I still longed for a way to demonstrate my full capacities and versatility as a writer, because there’s just not that much of a place for it in my professional writing. I’m not writing for The New York Times, where they encourage that sort of thing (well, sort of). I’m writing for trade publications that want informational pieces. That’s just the reality.
And I’m not complaining. I’m happy to have the job. But it is what it is, you know?
In all honesty, that’s part of why I started this blog in the first place. I needed to feel like I was doing some real writing — beyond what my current position limits me to as well as beyond even poetry (which I obviously can’t publish here if I ever want it picked up by literary journals, as my creative writing cohort is similarly familiar with). I needed to feel like I was doing some writing where I really just got to say what I wanted to in the ways I wanted to say them.
And as with any writing practice, it does improve with time and, er, practice. I’m seeing some interesting stuff develop through my blogging, and the more I like it, the more I think about somehow connecting this type of writing — definitely more me and what I’d like to be doing in the long term — to the other things I’ve got going on professionally (e.g., social media accounts, networking events, etc.).
So when my friend who knew nothing about these thoughts I’d been, er, thinking said what he, er, said to me, I knew it was really time for me to find a solution to this problem.
So I brooded again.
Then I worked on some poetry.
Then I did some cooking and laundry.
Then I went back to work for the week.
Then I brooded some more.
Then I repeated.
About two weeks later, in that magical — and when I say “magical,” I mean frickin’ insanely magical — space between wake and sleep that Larissa used to talk about and from which I’ve gotten so many ideas throughout the years, it came to me.
The answer is a new blog.
But not by me.
(But still by me, technically speaking.)
See, I need to be able to say things on the real, but I also need to have full indemnification.
And so, much like my poetry thesis, I will once again use a persona to accomplish my goals — which, now that I think about it, you’d think I would’ve considered as a promising solution much sooner, since it’s sort of a trick I’ve used before. But hey, I can’t be focused on the obvious when I’m too busy posting turd pics and/or talking smack, now, can I?
Plus, there’s the other goal of blogging that I was taking into consideration: a specific focus. While I need a space where I can literally talk about whatever the eff I want (which would be here), I also wanted to help people — kind of like Dear Abby, but with the Judge Judy attitude like I mentioned in this blog (because I have plenty of that to go around, with extra helpings prepared for the stupid).
Hence, the new blog, which will be “ask the mystery writer anything” (so, advice, opinions, etc.) in nature and will launch as soon as my mom sends me the final rendition of said “writer.”
I will say nothing more about it here — because you have no idea the insanely inordinate amount of time I’ve spent this week learning how to clear Google’s caches, then submitting those requests — though I’ve probably already said too much. Meh. I’ve password-protected certain blogs and done all I could just in case people try to get crafty, so if something’s meant to come back and bite me in the rear at this point, so be it. I knew what I was getting into when I made this blog public, so it’s time to put my big-girl pants on.
Anyhoo, I will still be writing on this blog as well, though perhaps not as often. All of my Facebook preciouses will be able to easily find this new venture through links I will post there, and I hope you’ll check it out; you can also request passwords to the protected blogs here through Facebook as well. If you’re not on my Facebook but follow this blog and would like to see what I’m up to, just shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks again to old creative writing pal for forcing me to find an answer to my personal/professional dilemma. I hope I can do your feedback justice.