It happened today. I’ve been waiting for it to happen for a few months and today it did. My blog has just passed 20,000 page views. In internet terms that’s not much, but it’s more than I thought I’d ever have. This will be my 170th post – more than I’d ever thought I’d write and officially I have over 100 followers of this blog.
When I was in high school I dreamt about being a science fiction writer. I read most of the major writers of the 60’s and 70’s. At one point I subscribed to four different science fiction magazines and read every page that was sent. I bought books on how to write science fiction, attended conferences and talked to writers. One thing I did very little of was actual writing.
Oh, there were a million excuses for not writing and frankly the few pieces I did write weren’t that good, but I will brag that I’ve been rejected by the very best science fiction magazines in the business. Yup, the few short stories I wrote, I actually had the nerve to send to an editor. And just as fast as the post office delivered my story, the rejection letter found its way back home.
I have to say that put me off writing for a very long time.
About 20 years ago I decided it was time to do something about my writing so I enrolled at the local community college with a mind towards completing a degree in English. I figured that would be the best way to learn to write.
One of my teachers said this, “What do writers do? They write. If you aren’t writing, you aren’t a writer. If you want to be a writer you have to write.” She also noted that good writers also study the writing of others, to learn how to improve their own craft.
I did both but I’ll admit that I read far more than I wrote. As I progressed through college and on to university I developed a taste for literary criticism. That gave me the skill to view a piece of writing from many different view points and with many different lenses. My teachers showed me some of the great works of literature and showed me hidden treasures in those old musty pages.
Delving into that vast realm of stories and human experience, I found new worlds – new ways to view the world. And perhaps, just as you taste buds change and crave new foods as you grow older, I lost my taste for Sci-Fi and except for “Earth Abides” and a few Asimov books, I haven’t read Sci-Fi in years.
I let the magazine subscriptions expire and have not sought out the current writers of the Sci-Fi field.
I suppose it could be viewed as a loss – all those years of enjoyment. All those dreams. All that gone.
But today I look at the body of work I have done. The work I did to earn my degree, a few odd bits of poems, a couple of short stories and this blog.
This blog has done one thing that other writing hasn’t done for me – it’s kept me writing. 170 posts and I rarely miss a week. True, it’s not going to set the world on fire or cause Hollywood agents to call wanting to buy the movie rights, but it is mine.
And for today, I’ll claim the title, “writer.”
You see, I write this funky little weekly blog that goes out to 100 subscribers.
Till next week,