In three weeks, I will be celebrating the six-year anniversary of this blog. I will also be celebrating the two-year anniversary of daily blogging. (Two years ago, I responded to a challenge to blog for 100 days, and I just kept going.)
My first post on September 24, 2006 was tentative, a mere dipping of my pen in the metaphorical ink of the blogosphere. All that post said was:
Am I an aspiring writer? I have written 4 books, rewritten them, and will continue rewriting them until they are perfected.
No. I am not an aspiring writer. I am aspiring to be a published writer.
Not a bad statement of intent for a new blogger. In the beginning I wrote about my struggles to find an agent or a publisher, my attempts to learn all I could about how to become a bestselling author (still don’t know — drats!), my efforts at establishing my online presence. In the beginning, I used no photo of me, just an initial. I still hadn’t decided if I wanted to use a male pseudonym or any pseudonym at all. I’d also started writing a new novel that I now call my work-in-pause since it’s been sitting there, half-finished for almost six years. Later, after I found a publisher, I talked about my newly published books, and when ebooks, Kindles, and self-publishers burst on the scene, changing the face of publishing forever, I wrote various blog posts about the publishing industry, trying to make sense of it all and trying to find my place in the clamor
Three and a half years ago, my soul mate died. His death catapulted me into a world of such pain, that it bled over into this blog. My grief posts became not so much a way to escape, but a place to try to make sense of what I was going through, to offer comfort and be comforted, to find my way to renewed life.
This blog also helped me to re-establish my life as a writer because, after all, blogging is writing, too.
It’s nice to know that whatever life threw at me, whatever problems I encountered, whatever challenges came my way, this blog was here for me.
But now I don’t know where to go with my life, and I don’t know where to go with this blog. Except for occasional grief updates or excerpts from my book: Grief: The Great Yearning, I’ve said most of what I wanted to say about grief. And there’s nothing more to be said about the publishing industry. It has changed beyond my comprehension, so there’s no point in my writing about it. Besides, there is too much controversy still, with militant self-publishers jumping on anyone they think is casting aspersions on the phenomena. And there is too much controversy with sharing writing tips. Every time I tell what I have learned, other authors stomp on my words, proclaiming that it’s an author’s right to make up the rules. I just am not a contentious person, and I don’t like being pulled unwittingly into such imbroglios.
So, I have three weeks to decide if I want to continue daily blogging or if I want to go back to the way I started, just blogging when I had something to say. I need to decide what, if anything, I have to say — maybe I’ve said it all.
In the end, I’ll probably decide not to decide, and just keep on blogging. It’s become a way of life.
Pat Bertram is the author of the suspense novels Light Bringer, More Deaths Than One, A Spark of Heavenly Fire, and Daughter Am I. Bertram is also the author of Grief: The Great Yearning, “an exquisite book, wrenching to read, and at the same time full of profound truths.” Connect with Pat on Google+. Like Pat on Facebook.
September 3, 2013 at 8:24 pm
I say, keep on doing what you’re doing. But if you want to spice things up, go on a road trip. See America, or beyond. Visit places you never thought you’d visit, meet people you only knew online. Maybe go to Hollywood and see if anyone’s interested in making a movie based on one of your books. And then when an actor or actress shows up for the auditions and they’re just one of those celebrities whose fame has addled their heads, you can roll your eyes, write a blog post about them, and get laughs from all the rest of us.
September 3, 2013 at 8:30 pm
Sounds wonderful! And I will (well, except maybe the Hollywood part), but not yet. I’m still mostly tied down. Lately I’ve been meeting a lot of people from England. Might be a sign to someday hop a plane and go see what adventures I can find. And yes, I do plan to meet my blog friends.
September 3, 2013 at 8:33 pm
Sweet! Let me know when you’re in Ohio! I’ll treat you to lunch or a show or something.
And if you go to England, do me a favor: watch out for MI6 agents, boy wizards, and giant laser-shooting salt shakers called Daleks. They’re everywhere over there, apparently.
September 4, 2013 at 6:32 am
I highly recommend a cross country road trip! I did it for over a year and it was beyond wonderful! All the great things I saw and people I met along the way added so much life to my writing and helped me grow into the next stage of my life.
September 4, 2013 at 9:56 am
How did you do your trip? Did you plan it out before hand, or just wing it? Did you go to major cities, small towns, tourist spots?
September 4, 2013 at 5:09 pm
I traveled in an RV with my daughter (who was two at the time, talk about an adventure that was.) I didn’t really plan it out before hand. I knew I wanted to hit up my family along the way and had a slim idea of where they lived. I started at one end of the country and just kept going. I avoided major cities mainly because of the RV. Ever try to parallel park one of those monsters? Yeah, that’s not happening.
September 4, 2013 at 5:16 pm
I’m plannng on driving a car, staying in motels or camping out in the car. Could get expensive, but at least I wouldn’t have to fuel up an RV. I have a couple of friends who plan to live in their RV, and it will be interesting to see how they do it. At least they won’t have a two-year-old companion. I can only imagine what an adventure that was!
September 4, 2013 at 12:11 pm
Wow. 6 years is a lot. And daily blogging – that’s so difficult for me to do.
September 4, 2013 at 2:44 pm
Daily blogging is difficult. It’s a discipline, and unless you have a major interests to talk about, such as gardening, fashion, or movies, It’s hard to find topics. Mostly, you have to be willing to be open about the ups and downs of your life.
September 5, 2013 at 10:52 pm
I think you should keep writing trying to kep the same emotional integrity you’ve always had. I think the story of a woman looking after her parents after losing her soul mate with more questions than answers as to her ‘future’; forced into living in the ‘now’ when the fact is the ‘now’ certainly wasn’t high on her wish list however willingly you take on this role …is a story many many people can relate to and need to hear. If you face your coming journey with the grace, the intellect, the open mind, the questioning and the emotional bravery you have showed since you lost Jeff many folk will, at the very least, ask their own questions. Too many poor folk are stuck in situations they don’t think they will ever get out and overwhelmed by the emotional intensity of…jeez… everything that comes up in their minds when looking after a elderly parent.
That’s my humble opinion any way Pat :). Maybe once a week if everyday is too much. Then I could keep up with your posts :). With love, your loyal aussie reader
September 6, 2013 at 9:48 am
I would say relax a little. Write what you are moved to say, and don’t worry about how often it is.