Today is my blogoversary.
One year ago today, I wrote my first blog post on The Secret Life Of A Warrior Woman.
I look back on that piece now and, apart from cringing a little at the writing, it seems so very long ago.
Back then, I didn’t know anything about WordPress or Thesis, SEO or affiliate marketing. I hadn’t met Galit or Dead Cow Girl or Beth or Shay. I certainly hadn’t heard of Johnny B. Truant, Darren Rowse or Mark Sissons.
I’ve made a little pocket money, won a couple of things, but mostly I’ve languished luxuriously in the community.
But at first, I started with the idea I would write for myself.
I didn’t care if anyone read what I wrote.
In hindsight, that was probably a tactic designed to save me from sadness when no-one did.
At the same time, it also helped me overcome the fear someone would take time out of their life to read something I’d written.
It’s scary putting one’s writing and thoughts out there.
After a while, I did care.
Because you cared.
Slowly you came, you commented, you tweeted and you shared. You probably have no idea how that thrills me.
Or how grateful I am.
Because finally, despite the best efforts of my education and my ability to look the other way, I have found my groove.
As a child, creative writing was effortless. It just poured out. I had no fear and no judgment. I would hand my work in to the teacher, without pride or concern.
It just was.
Then curriculum policy changed and creative writing was patted away.
Writing became essays.
Pages and pages of them.
Of critical thinking, relevant quotes, plots and sub-plots, symbolism and onomatopoeia.
They were drafted, rewritten, edited, then edited again. In long-hand.
The opposite of free-wheeling and creative.
By the time I left high school, I’d forgotten I could write. I’d forgotten an ambition to write for magazines.
The next thirty years I was asleep to a core skill.
But there were signs.
In the workplace, I was asked by others to write their documents and letters. I wrote a couple of articles for my twins club. I sailed through the writing component of my degree.
But when we homeschooled, I sent my son to a writing tutor.
I had no idea how I did it.
And I didn’t recognize writing for the strength it was.
Eventually, I started a private blog to vent over a crisis. Then I went public, drumming up support for a volunteer project.
And finally, it was my turn.
I still get tied up in knots over some posts. They take me ages to write or I hit ‘publish’ and my blood turns to ice. Other times it thrills me to publish my thoughts, invent a turn of phrase, or, especially, make people laugh.
Sometimes I wonder if people think my writing’s rubbish. If they are critical of my wrongly placed apostrophes, of my obsession with commas that continues to ride unabated.
But you know what? I do it anyway.
An artist friend of mine recently called my writing, my ‘art.’
I was shocked because I am the most pragmatic person you can imagine. But she’s right, it is my form of creative expression.
If I have one, we must all.
What’s yours? Don’t be asleep to it.
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