At first it was merely a time thing. In August, my son played "Charlie" in a community production of Willy Wonka. During that time, and the three months before, I lived and breathed Willy Wonka. I was running lines, singing songs, driving my little star to and from practices, and being an equal mixture of exceedingly proud of him and being exceedingly terrified for him. That last one will take a lot out of you.
I was busy being mother/manager and no matter how much I wanted to write, when I came home at night, my brain was fried and I just couldn't bring myself to write like I wanted to. My best writing at the time were extensive "to do" lists for the following day that I physically had to make just to be able to shut my brain off long enough to sleep.
And if I am going to be very honest, something else happened about that time: I got incredibly frustrated with the blogging community. It seemed that blogging had changed from writing because I love to write to blogging as a contest to see how popular I could get or how many sponsors I could acquire or how many followers I had collected on my side bar. I hated that. I did not want to become that person.
Now, please don't get me wrong. If you are a blogger and you have 15 bazillion followers and the people at Pepsi have purchased you a private jet with your name emblazned on the side to take you to all of your bloggy speaking arrangements so that you can tell other people how blogging has changed your life, that is AMAZING and I admire you for your fabulous writing and content as well as your superior marketing prowess. There is nothing wrong with that.
What felt wrong to me was that I would get online and visit my favorite blogs and instead of coming away inspired or happy or whatever good emotion I had felt before, I instead leave, thinking to myself, "what in the WORLD am I doing wrong!? All of these people are getting 50 billion page views a day and making enough money to support themselves just by writing! I am CLEARLY doing something wrong."
I must suck as a writer.And so on.
I SUCK as a writer.
That is my long winded blogging boohoo story. I made the mistake of comparing my writing to others. The mistake of comparing my blog to other blogs. I lost interest playing that game. Thankfully, I had Willy Wonka as an excuse to distance myself for a while. One month became two, which became five. I took that time to think about what I really wanted. I also realized that blogging is not a competition. Not for me, anyway. Not unless I choose to compare myself to others. I write because I love to write. I write because my favorite teacher once made this comment on a story I'd written :
Katie, this story was a joy to read! I can tell you love to write. Keep it up!I think I will.