Posted in Daily Prompt Posts, Uncategorized

Day 1: What do you do when you feel lost in the blogging world?#MyBlogMyWritingStyle!

Feeling lost in the blogging world is a very familiar issue for me. This was apparent when I first started and felt overwhelmed to do anything in this forum.

Suddenly I feel voiceless, insecure, and stuck. How do you find a voice and audience in this vast maze of words and images?

aerial photo of buildings and roads
Photo by Aleksejs Bergmanis on Pexels.com

I’ve learned to keep moving forward, learn from my mistakes, and believe that I am contributing something special to the blogging world. I remind myself that starting is the hardest part of undertaking a new venture. All the fears, self-doubt, self-censorship, and frustration leads to inertia, which can keep you in a state of doing nothing towards your goal.

Although I avoid getting lost most of the time, being lost can lead to some discoveries. I’ve learned this when I’m on the road and my navigation keeps leading me in circles. I turn it off and let my adventurous side take over. It takes longer than usual with the detours, delays, and rerouting, but I’m surprised by how the streets intersect and how an unexpected path brings me to my house street.

“I got lost but look what I found.”

Irving Berlin

It’s like that with blogging too. I’m searching, exploring, reflecting, and experimenting to see how my blog evolves. When I feel lost I remind myself that even well-seasoned bloggers have gone through this wandering, creative process too. It’s not time lost but experience gained to become a better blogger.

“Not until we are lost do we begin to understand ourselves.”

Henry David Thoreau

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Writing in micro steps

via Daily Prompt: Micro

I’d be lost without micro steps. If I have too large a writing goal looming, I quickly despair and frantically search for ways to procrastinate. The task at hand seems too large. This is when I wish for superhero powers to bolt through the pages with eloquent words, memorable humor, and meaningful message flowing beautifully between the pages. One can wish and daydream.

antique-black-and-white-business-209257

Writing teaches me, or rather forces me, to embrace micro steps. I’ve learned that any type of writing takes immense patience, self-discipline, and constant surrendering of perfection. When I begin reading a new book and start spacing out I feel a tinge of guilt as though I’ve betrayed the author’s trust.

I’ve always had fears about writing, but it rose to a new level in graduate school complete with heart palpitations, panic attacks, and dizzy spells. So I combated those writing fears and insecurity with my procrastination motions: cleaning frantically, snacking voraciously, seeking distractions, starting a new project, surfing the web incessantly, or deciding that tomorrow is a better day to start. On one of these procrastinating moments, I lazily walked to the school bookstore and found a writing book by Anne Lamott: the highlighted excerpt on the back cover encouraged me to the core.

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Back cover excerpt: bird by bird by Anne Lamott

I could relate. My writing was not about birds, but her story still applied: sentence by sentence; paragraph by paragraph; page by page. One step taken is closer to the finish line than lingering at the start. It may not seem like much progress in the micro steps, but those little parts contribute to the whole.

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Candid thoughts about writing a blog

Candid

I’ll be candid.

Writing a blog takes more time than I imagined. I love that this community of writers exist to share and interact with others. However, one lingering question I have is how long it takes other bloggers to write a post. In my situation, it takes me more than one sitting, with many distractions from little people, to finish an entry.

I remind myself that journal writing was time consuming too except that I was only writing for myself. Blogging is worth the trouble; real people read, comment, and encourage. This is where I feel my effort pays off.

Secretly I wanted to start blogging years ago: seven years to be exact. But all the hesitations, doubts, and fears held me back. I kept waiting for the perfect moment that never seemed to come.

In hindsight I realize my blob of fears was driven by how much I would feel comfortable being candid with old friends and with new friends I would make. Do you see a pattern here? When writing is involved, it takes me years to make changes.

Another candid bit about blogging: I constantly check my stats.

*sighing very deeply here

I wish I were immune to the distraction of checking those darn daily stats, but my obsessive compulsive personality obsesses over it. My practical and problem-solving oriented husband, much to his regret, once commented that I’m setting myself up for disappointment if my main motivation is for high stats. ouch! That’s not the main reason but I can’t wholly deny that it plays a role. Needless to say, he tried extra hard that afternoon to be nice and accommodating after uttering that insensitive comment.

I’ve had a few months of exploring topics I want to write about and assessing which ones resonate with me and the readers. It’ll take much longer to really learn how to navigate the features of WordPress, find my niche, and develop my writer’s voice.

Good things take time to grow. Must be patient, work hard, and not take myself so seriously.