Where–How–Why–to Begin?

In Joke Show on Netflix, comedian Michelle Wolf said that a blog is conversation that no one wants to have with you. Hmm. While that made me wince, it’s like that. With a few exceptions, I haven’t even been able to persuade people who like me and should probably wish to support my creative efforts to subscribe.

Besides, there’s so much more that’s out there now. The Blog Age is the dinosaur era of social media. Alas, it means reading. That’s no competition for YouTube or Tik Toks. Or posting endless photos of yourself on Instagram.

Of course, the longer I write about anything that sparks my interest, the more I realize how many others have done it before or after or better than I do. So, why continue?

A couple of reasons:

  1. It’s a platform on which to publish without the hassle and insult of pitching. The rejection of my material comes with silence rather than a form rejection letter—sometimes not even that. One editor slapped a pencil scribbled post-it note on my returned material shilling for his course. Another sent it back mutilated and coffee-stained without a note of any kind. Beyond lame.
  2. I can write about what I like to write about on my own terms. However, by doing so my Google ratings aren’t high because I refuse to write in a format that’s suited to AI and bots. That’s worse than the creativity-stifling, 5-paragraph essays I used to have to demand from my high school students. Like many plusses, there are also minuses to most points.

Recently, the problem is that I find less and less that I am motivated to write about.  A new year and a new decade have begun, but realistically that feels not all that promising or fresh. There isn’t anything new under the sun as the jaded and likely depressed Solomon once said. Still, a good writer can take that same-old same-old stuff and give it that je ne sais quoi to make it live anew on the page.

When my mother died in May 2016 I decided to give myself a sabbatical year from writing except for the blog. That’s now coming up to 4 years. Part of me thinks I probably should stop pretending and retire the blog. Another part is reluctant to embrace another in the numerous major losses I have since experienced. So I make a 2020 Vision Board and choose a word for the year: Ignite. It’s time to get the fire started.

As I rub sticks together to coax something–anything–the words of James Thurber offer comfort: He [She] who hesitates is sometimes saved.

 

2020 Image Credit to Pearl White Media

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6 Responses to Where–How–Why–to Begin?

  1. Charlotte Matthies Boychuk says:

    I think it was fate, or the universe nudging me, to have you pop into my head a couple of times in the past couple of weeks – and then to read this blog today. Just wanted to let you know you’re not forgotten – nor your efforts overlooked. Life has been quite “messy” the past few years (and at our age, why is that????). My mother is now ensconced in a facility here in the netherlands of central Alberta, and that is consuming a lot of energy. Just thought you should know that your mother’s painting is hung on a prime piece of real estate in her room 🙂

    • Lynda Philippsen says:

      Thank you for taking the time to comment and offer acknowledgment of my efforts. I appreciate it very much. It’s wonderful to know how many people treasure my mother’s paintings (and clocks–she also created many of those) as well as her imprint on their lives. I created a small gallery of her landscapes in the long entrance hallway to my home.

  2. Anne says:

    O crocus root, how do you know,
    How do you know?

    Thomas Hardy

  3. Anne says:

    You just need a little oxygen to bring all that beautiful energy to light. Hang in there.

    • Lynda Philippsen says:

      Ah! Thank you, Anne. That’s a gorgeous thought and a wonderful gift. Oxygen. Breathing in. Breathing out. Breathing across the embers.

      “Your breath touched my soul and I saw beyond all limits.” — Rumi

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