I’m not one of those people who wants to write a novel. Nope, I don’t think I have a novel in me.
That said, however, I’ve always wanted to write.
Despite this want, however, the whole act of writing, the very thought of writing, has always been painful and fraught for me.
I read novels and other books and wonder how the authors did (d0) it, put each word together to form sentences that were just so damn perfect. And don’t even get me started about poetry, damn evocative, emotion-triggering beautiful pieces of art that they are.
And probably I would never ever have been convinced that I too could at least try my hand at writing, if not for blogging. I don’t actually think I would have developed the confidence to write if not for blogging.
There’s something about blogging – getting down my words in small, finite blocks and putting them where I (and others) can easily read them – that gives my writing a focus. It’s also been a good practice to get over my “it’s not good enough” anxiety. Hit publish, it’s done.
I write other things that I don’t show anyone. You know, the stuff you need to get out, get rid of. Sometimes the most difficult stuff to write, but getting it out – well, I need to.
There’s really nothing like writing to help me get over my fear of writing. For me, the hardest part is to just start. And then stick with it. Don’t let the inner critic talk me out of it. Which is just as well, given how much writing I have to do these days, at work.
The other day I saw a video of Seth Godin and Tom Peters talking about blogging. Seth said, just do it for yourself. Don’t worry if anyone reads it. If you’re good at it people will read it. If you’re not good at it, keep doing it, you will get better at it. This sums it up for me really. I’ve never bothered to check how many readers I have because that’s not what this is about for me. (I know I do have a few readers – hi readers, I’m glad you do read my posts )
I’ll sum up with what Tom Peters said in the video (transcribed myself, hope I got it right):
No single thing in the last 15 years professionally has been more important to my life than blogging. It has changed my life, it has changed my perspective, it has changed my intellectual outlook, it has changed my emotional outlook (and it’s the best damn marketing tool by an order of magnitude I’ve ever had).
I’m not a marketing type but I have to agree with Tom.
I’m not even sure I would still be working in the library profession if not for blogging, and writing! (But that’s another story. Let me know if you want me to tell it.)