Okay, so on this blog, I talk a lot about being organized, plotting, knowing where you’re going and what you need to do. I can’t claim that it’s the most laser-focused thing in the world, though, as I’m 99.999% of the time doing it off the cuff (and thinking, Man, I’ve gotta get this blog post out the door before the day is over, crap!). My natural tendency towards essay-writing (which is what blog posts are) is to ramble, shoot off asides, and whenever possible, insert puns. I also play a LOT with metaphor–get me on a metaphor kick and you’ll lose me all day long) I should have named this whole blog “But I digress…” because it seems like sometimes that’s all I do. Even from my digressions.
So when I started the blog, I thought I’d follow Kristen Lamb’s excellent advice and not be a writer blogging about writing, but also limit my blog posts to a handful of topics. For all the people who give that “how to tame social media” advice, it seems to work for them, because they get HUGE followings from people looking to, uh, tame social media. But the part I didn’t seem to really get (and through no fault of Kristen’s–her materials are excellent, good-sense advice and hammer home a theme of Being Authentic that transcends the actual stuff you do) is whether or not I could build up massive followings of people by not blogging about social media.
And I’ll be perfectly honest–I’ve never really thought of this blog’s goal as being to build up a massive following for my bloggings. I created it because I need an author presence on the net, I’ve got some stuff to say that I hope is interesting outside of the echo chamber of my own head, and because I have stories I want people to read, which is where the real stuff-I-gotta-say comes out. But for that other stuff–the off-topic, the meta, the “man, this life is weird” observations…I think I might be able to make this place a home for that stuff. I digress, but I had visions of this blog being full of blurbs, excerpts, “DVD extras,” book covers, and snippets of all the incredible amount of indie fiction I was going to be able to unleash on an unsuspecting world like a tidal wave of words. Reality has taught me that writing “without a net,” so to speak, inspires just as much nitpicky-ness in my process as writing for a publisher in the traditional manner. My toughest Boss Battle is with my own internal editing bad self.
But back to the whole “use a blog to find and reach your audience” thing–it seems I’ve spent most of my life feeling off-center. A little weird, definitely not part of the kool-kids klub, and sometimes (especially in my younger days) trying to desperately fit in, while at the same time refusing to file off those rough edges that kept me out (and later, reveling in those rough edges, my outside-looking-in worldview, and a degree of iconoclasty while simultaneously expecting the rest of the world to catch on and love me for it. Sadly, that still hasn’t happened, but I can say I have the love of a precious handful of Very Important People to me, and they are really the ones who matter most). But when I look at myself, my life right now, I realize that somehow the impossible has happened–I’ve become “mainstream” in spite of myself, in a time when mainstreamy-ness isn’t really prized (especially if you’re on the internet, looking to attract people’s attention). So after a lifetime of trying and failing at “the norm” I suddenly find myself in the normiest place I could possibly be (traditional family, wife, mother, suburban housewife, and socially-functional not-quite-ubernerd) and that in turn has presented me with ABSOLUTELY NOTHING unique to offer you, dear blog browser.
Except for myself. A little piece of me that may be common as trash (and haha, yes, I’m not above occasionally reveling in my white-trash roots, just don’t tell my mother I call it “white trash”). And maybe a bit of a different take on the wild and crazy indie ride this has been. One thing it’s been easy to forget when I’m on this journey is that I can stop anytime–the flexibility of being Indie appealed to me because I had control over what I chose to do, and I could stop doing anything I didn’t feel was productive or added value. I’m not saying I’ll leave off doing Momming Mondays or Worldbuilding Wednesdays, just that my topics need to branch out. I feel like I’ve covered most of what I want to say under those topics. So I’m going to try for a take on things that’s a little more “me” and a little less like stereo instructions. 🙂