So what’s going on with your blog, Amy?
If you’re guessing my blog is coming up more than usual in conversation and correspondence, you’d be right. And there’s a story behind it.
I was sitting in the bar at ConFusion one night, the way you do when you’re a writer, and I was hanging out with two of my favorite bloggers. I have to admit I’m kind of snobby when it comes to bloggers, and these two people both knock it out of the park on a regular basis. And one of them said they had trouble emotionally connecting with my blog.
You might remember that at that time I was in the throes of impostor syndrome, so my poor brain was screaming at me, “You see, Amy, you see? You even FAIL AT BLOGGING.”
I listened to my brain for a minute or two, and then I said, “No, this is dumb, I don’t fail at blogging, and also, hello? This is a GOLDEN OPPORTUNITY.”
So I asked these two bloggers for their advice. They had both read my blog. What was one thing I could do that would improve it and create a stronger emotional connection with my readers?
I talked with one of the bloggers about how to structure a post for maximum impact, which was geektastic and fascinating. And then I turned to the other blogger. “You tend to be kind of vague, Amy,” he said. “You don’t use specific details.” And then he gave me some examples.
And I thought, yes, I know, I totally do that, and worse, I do it on purpose, I pull my punches. I don’t say what I really want to say. I try to write about the truth without showing you the truth.
I tend to pull my punches in real life too. I can be so freaking nice. You know what other words spring to mind along with nice? Milk soppy. Wishy washy. BORING.
So I resolved, there and then, to write a post about my impostor syndrome, which is something that most writers face at one time or another and yet many of us are afraid to write about for fear of damaging our careers. And I resolved to NOT pull my punches. I resolved to pay attention to structure and to use specific details. I resolved to tell you what it was like in that bathroom, down to not knowing where the hell to put my glasses while I cried.
I became a better writer the day I wrote that post.
And the day I published the post? Well.
I did not expect the reaction I got. Not at all. The outpouring of support was….well, it was amazing and overwhelming and inspiring and strange and deeply meaningful. It changed me. You changed me. Part of the reason I write this blog is to give something to you, and then you wonderful human beings turned the tables on me and gave me something so precious that I’m tearing up while I’m trying to write about it.
Thank you thank you thank you.
So that’s what’s going on with the blog. I’m experimenting with the good advice from two bloggers who I deeply respect. I’m not pulling my punches. I’m trying to give myself permission to write the way I was born to write. And it’s making people uncomfortable, and it’s making ME uncomfortable, and it’s making me a better writer, and I don’t know where I’m going with it.
And it’s not just the blog that’s changing either; I’m changing right along with it.
Exciting times, my friends. Exciting times.