My commitment to writing
22) Keeping the main thing the main thing <58th OP>
When I first started writing on Wordpress, I was excited to share stories and get immediate feedback from people. I didn’t have many subscribers at all, and it didn’t seem to matter. When I switched over to Substack in April, I saw a lot of bells and whistles, and got very intrigued by the glamour of this site.
I wrote two stories early on that generated quite a bit of buzz - 5 books I gifted the most (updated), which in some ways was cool, because I had a wide enough range of books to promote it in various groups. Under normal times, this probably would have been one of my most widely read stories to date with more than two thousand views.
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But, then the world lost its mind again (which it frequently does) and I tapped into the hysteria in a way that even I was surprised by.
The fact that this story has garnered almost 15,000 views is still incredible to me. But, I also realize that in some ways this story popping the way it did is almost like a G-League Basketball player on a 10 day NBA contract who happened to score 30 points in a meaningful game. It’s huge, but not necessarily sustainable.
<Number of views as of 07/13/2022>
Also, it’s not exactly fun to write about tragedy. It’s not something I want to be like, “Hey everyone, look at this awesome (yet majorly depressing) piece I wrote!”
I’m not sure if I thought things would come easier after this piece. Who am I kidding? Of course I did! But, it honestly hasn’t. I realize the time I started blogging in 2017, I often lost momentum as I didn’t really know how to pivot or push through the writing malaise. That, and life just got busy sometimes.
Life still is busy (if not busier), but I am committed to consistently writing. And while that means I’m constantly improving on my craft, it also means I'm not always going to be great. In fact, it means I still need to put the time in and develop to even become consistently good. A great story might emerge like the Columbine piece, and some really good ones will still be published. But, I realize more and more now, that writing is a process not a product.
I recently read a really informative blog post about the writing process, and the various stages to becoming a masterful writer. For myself, I realize I have entered “Stage Two” for the first time. At first I was naturally very frustrated by this, until I was actually able to identify it.
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