I began this adventure three years ago not knowing what to expect. Duh. Does anyone ever know what to expect? The All-Wise Blog Sages recommended a tight focus: The Pet Lover’s Gazette > The Dog Lover’s Gazette > The Chihuahua Lover’s Gazette > The Longhaired Tan-Coated Chihuahua Puppy Lover’s Gazette. I tried to come up with something focused, really, but just couldn’t make myself that small. So, after pondering the issue in my first five blog posts, I settled on the vague-but-honest subtitle The Power of Story, and the self-descriptive, “Writer, Filmmaker, Humorist, Thinker-About-Stuffer.”
Yet somehow, over the last three years, fellow-bloggers and explorers from other dimensions (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn) have found their way here, and provided wormholes for me into their parallel universes, as well. And some—quite a few—have become friends. Yeah, I know, online “friends” aren’t real friends, yada-yada. But dammit, some of them really are.
A few months after I started, I wrote a despairy little rant entitled New Blogger Blues, and got a quick ironic bump. Some people gave encouragement, while others were fellow “What am I doing wrong?”ers. But all reminded me I wasn’t alone. It wasn’t an Interstellar moment, but it was nice (Now that I’m a bonafide junior birdman, I try and pay it back, forward, and sideways as much as I can.)
When Robin Williams died, I wrote a “trending” post–without realizing it—and had my first (mini) viral moment. I’d give that up to have Robin back, of course, but it showed me that sometimes you have an accidental box office hit and other times you build it and they simply don’t come. Which is OK. Really. And then again, sometimes your post gets dug up by some intrepid paleontologist, and treasured like sap-turned-to-amber; my article Caterpillars Don’t Become Butterflies is read by more people every month now than it was the entire first year it was posted!
Finally (not that you’re asking), here’s some advice:
- Don’t just find your voice, develop it. Find the sweet spot interwoven from what your audience responds to and what’s authentically you.
- Edit! Being concise will enhance your flavor; it’s literary MSG (without the side effects).
- WordPress Reader: find like-minded bloggers here, using tag words; then read their posts, make comments, and some (not all) will discover you back.
Thank you, dear friends.
Blessings till it hurts!