I know that I have been blogging for a while, but I feel like I’ve lost some focus on what my blog is and where I want to go with it. I wanted to join Blogging 101 a few months back, but, as usual, I missed the deadline.
Well not this time around! And January seems like the time for resolutions and following through, so I decided to enroll! Our first assignment is to introduce ourselves (yes, I’m a little late, but I signed up yesterday the 5th, and the first assignment was posted on the 4th – oops):
I do have an “about me” section, but it’s fairly generic. I’ve been writing since I was a youngster in grade school. I always kept them private, though. I never wanted anyone to see my writing – mostly in fear of rejection. I remember one time when I was in 6th grade, we had to write a Halloween story for class. I turned mine in and I got an A on it. I was so proud. The next day, my teacher asked the students who would like to volunteer to read their stories. The popular outgoing students all raised their hands and wanted to show off their stories. I did not. I didn’t like to be put in the spotlight. After about five students read their stories, no one else volunteered to read, so my teacher called on me to read mine. I was terrified! I stumbled on my words. My OWN words. A few students laughed at me. My own classmates thought laughing at me would be appropriate. So, I stopped reading, sat back down at my desk and I didn’t finish my story. That kept me from wanting to share my writing for a very long time. It seems silly now – to let other people’s reactions dictate MY actions. I shouldn’t have let it bother me so much, but I did. After all, I was only in 6th grade.
I didn’t have a lot of friends, so I turned to writing stories – mostly based on people that I knew. Writing about what you know is easier, especially to a grade schooler. It wasn’t until high-school that I shared a few poems that I read, but only with a few friends. And DEFINITELY not online. I did start an online journal once. Anyone remember Livejournal?? The majority of my entries were set to private, but I would post things like “I ate a grilled cheese sandwich and watched a movie today.” Nothing of substance at all.
I started this blog in 2011, but never really wrote anything in it for a while. I would post quotes or inspiration sayings very rarely for the first year. It wasn’t until I discovered heartache and wine that I published my first poem, “Back to September” and, admittedly, I was not sober. I received such positive feedback about my writing style and letting my emotions public, that I got the courage to write a few more poems. All of them about boys (go figure, right?) and all because of heartaches.
I could never quote commit to blogging, though. I started many posts, but I never published them. “Do people actually read this stuff?” was (and still is) a thought that crosses my mind. I think most of it is out of fear: fear of rejection, fear of sounding stupid, or fear of being too public about my life.
My hope with doing these Blogging 101 courses is to find some focus for my blog, but also to connect with other writers/bloggers. I am a Metra commuter (just over an hour each way to work) so I very much so enjoy reading blogs and building online support groups. Hopefully this will help me learn to let it go.
Until next time.