Writing: A Peek Behind The Curtain

I made a new friend recently who is thinking about starting a blog.  She has a clear topic and a clear vision for her blog and has been mulling over the idea for a few months. I nearly jumped up and down with excitement for her.

"Oh you should!! You DEFINITELY need to start writing!!"  I enthused.

Screen Shot 2014-07-16 at 8.13.14 PM
Screen Shot 2014-07-16 at 8.13.14 PM

I generally don't believe in talking people into (or out of) big decisions.  But, I think everyone should have a blog!  I've felt this way since watching Seth Godin and Tom Peters (here) explain what blogging does for your mind -- how it clarifies your thinking and forces you to show a little courage.

For me, what I write isn't nearly as important as the process.

Sitting down and staring at a blank screenThinkingBeing QuietNOT surfing the internetListeningLetting ideas flow Trusting that words, even late at night when sleep is closing in, will flow...

And they DO flow.

Not neatly. Not in advance. And certainly not in a linear or orderly way.

But eventually they come.  In dribs and drabs.  All over the map.  Like a flood.

Getting thoughts out has been a fascinating process.  I don't follow the usual rules: pick ONE topic and stick to it, target a narrow demographic, and write from your expertise.

Nah. I don't like those rules.

I would be bored writing about one thing.  I want to talk to men/women who are old/medium/young in age.  I want diversity more than uniformity.  And, to be candid, I'm almost always writing outside of anything which could remotely be called an "expertise." (Unless you're talking about carrot cake and tacos -- I know I rock those!!)

The first goal when I write is to listen well.  However, on the many days I don't "hear" anything, I write anyway because my second goal is to push "publish."

The crazy thing is, on those days when I LOVE my writing, when I think I've poured out my thoughts as precisely as I am able, I don't hear much feedback.  On other days, when I feel like the writing feels flat, the encouragement comes pouring in.

I don't understand what works and what doesn't.

There.  I said it.

Almost three years into this process and I really have no idea what I'm doing.

This isn't a plea to you, dear friends, to respond any differently than you already do (and I think you're FANTASTIC, truly), but to say that even when you're clueless, the experimentation process is worth the price of admission.

Thanks for being part of my journey!