Writing for Myself

I’ve been writing for most of my adult life. Except for a few published works in anthologies, newspapers and magazines, my writing languished in forlorn folders on my computer. No one saw it but me.  The new age of blogging and self-publishing got me thinking this might be a way to get some exposure.

It was while thinking about blogging, I happened upon the movie, Julie and Julia.  It’s the true story of how writer, Julie Powell, blogged about her adventures, cooking her way through Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking. The result was a book deal (2005), a movie deal (2009) and being launched as a writer. My goals were less grand but her experiences helped me in some surprising ways to find my own path.

In the movie, Julie let the whole experience unravel her life. She worried about who was reading her and was she disappointing them; she had self-described “meltdowns” that wreaked havoc on her life, her work and her marriage. This insanity was something I knew I wanted no part of.

I was sure of only one thing. If I was going to do this it had to be for me. I wanted my writing out there and thought this might give me a sense of accomplishment. Writing friends reminded me that once a piece was on the blog it would be considered “published.” I decided I could live with that. Actually, that fit my goals perfectly.

Lastly, I found help. I searched for someone with computer skills and her own blog. I chose WordPress because I liked their layout and choices. We met once a month as she constructed my site. In between sessions, I began to post my writing and become more comfortable with the program. It was money well spent.

But I don’t think of what I do as blogging. I consider my site a website. My pieces are essays, personal and memoir. Each piece is complete on its own. I pay no attention to word count; I’m just interested in telling the story.

I have over a dozen pages on my website so that my stories can be posted into the appropriate category.  I have a page for family stories; another for retirement essays. Work, girlfriends, health, poetry and even a page about writing. I’ve been doing this since 2015 and have nearly 200 pieces posted.

For any piece that was previously published, I’ve included the date and place of publication at the beginning of the post. This process has me writing nearly every day and I’m always working on something. I’m energized and motivated to write all my stories because now have a place to put them. That’s the payoff when writing for myself

 

 

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