I started this year with a challenge….several actually. New Years always seems like a beautiful chance to start over. But the only thing that truly makes the day different at all is the writing of the full date and indicating the new year’s digit…but for some reason, we get very excited to purchase new calendars and write lists of all kinds of promises. Chief among them weight loss, ending credit card debt, joining a gym for half a minute, etc.
My challenge was to see if I could write a post every single day for a year.
Well, we all fall short. But I have produced 200 pieces of somewhat interesting prose this year…and some 57,000 times they have been read. To toast the apparent absence of better things for you all to do, and to shed light on what I’m sure isn’t really a mystery, I present 10 reasons I write:
9. Writing a blog is often mistaken for studying or emailing US ambassadors or contributing a letter to a campaign for a noble cause….
8. It is a stepping stone to my future as an award-winning writer. Or as least one that makes money off her chick-lit screen play-ready novellas, living in a bathrobe and drinking cabernet for breakfast in her Italian villa.
7. It is a record of the mundane.Sometimes I write about everything I thought before 8am, or merely make lists of what I have accomplished or not that weekend. But to go back, I can remember the snapshot details of what was just another day, forever immortalized in blog.
6. I love googling random photos, and blogging gives me a legitimate reason to compile them. Tis a fun thing to write about, oh, the mistreatment of animals in sausage factories, and then find a picture of someone dressed as a pig eating bacon, and try to make a connection.
5. To be able to google random things you like and then stumble upon your own blog = priceless.
4. Emotional Vomit. Have you ever heard that advice, that if you have a problem with someone, you can sit and write them a letter, and then just never send it? I even do that with emails sometimes. I write them and save them as drafts, and then forget about them. Blogging lets me release some of my thoughts and tension that would otherwise come out as angry words. And I have the power to go back and edit.
3. I have early onset Alzheimers. I’m almost sure of it. I can barely remember what I wore yesterday. Some nights I go to my own blog and click on “random post” on the top left and read something I wrote a few years ago. I am my own mystery. Writing helps me remember what I forget under school, work, aforementioned wine-for-breakfast habit, etc. So if a few years from now, I am pulling a Grandma Great and am in a home, chummy with random Filipinos and “going out” with dirty former sailors named Frank, eating dinner at 4pm, make me read these stories and remember what I once was, a la “The Notebook.”
2. To give credit where credit is due. Lots of times I am inspired by someone else, or a place, or nature, or food! Lots of times a trip, a memory, or God. And I love to be able to point to the muse, shine a light on the beach, the smoothie/bagel combo, the worship song, the campfire that so moved me. I love to tell the stories.
1. I write because I like it…. sometimes I write something that means something to someone, and they write me. And we connect again, and the world becomes a little warmer and a little smaller and easier to hold because of that. When Carly died, I wrote a lot; it helped me to grieve and process. And suddenly people from high school would send me messages and a friendship would rekindle. Or people read about my mission trips and ask me about Jesus. Or I can write about being depressed and people can identify with that. Maybe words are hard for you. They are easy for me, I have too many.
Michaelangelo once said of carving David, “I saw an angel in the marble and I carved until I set him free.” I think there is something potentially great in each of us, and to write about it all, to be vulnerable and held accountable by so many I know and do not know, it sharpens my senses and resolve, and eventually something beautiful can be revealed. And if I can help people along the way, or at least make them laugh…two thumbs way up, buddy.
Here’s to 200 posts this year. Viva la blog!