The Benefits of Writing on Hubpages for the Last Two Years

How Writing Online Healed My Grief and Gave Me a New Career Opportunities

As a general rule I do not like to do these self-promotional pieces, however I believe it is important for those of us who are experienced long standing writers at Hubpages to continue to share our stories to encourage those who are new to the process of writing online.

Full of Grief I Began Writing

Starting

I started at Hubpages immediately after my Mother lost her two year battle with cancer. At the request of my Mother, because she had rectal cancer and was embarrassed, I did not speak to anyone during my Mother’s battle with cancer. It was two very long hard years in which I did everything I could to try and stay off her pain, amuse her, fulfill her bucket list and even keep her alive. I had no social interaction let alone a job so after she died I had to try and pull my son, who has autism and a rare disorder through his grief, and I had to find some work. Hubpages was the perfect place to start.

The Pen that Purges

The Perks of Writing

Do You Believe Writing Can Heal a Soul?

  • Yes
  • No
  • Sometimes
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The Power of the Pen

The power of the pen is very healing. Literally, I was grieving so badly I could not remember anything. My first year on Hubpages is documentation of my grief process. Hubpages also allowed me to use a pseudonym which was my Mother’s name. So my writing for Hubpages was also my ability to create a living memorial to my Mother who in life did not say the things she thought. JT was a card. She had such a different way at looking at the world which she was so afraid to share with anyone but me. In that first year, writing for Hubpages allowed me to express a lot of her unvoiced opinions. It provided my readers with a unique perspective ad it gave me a great deal of solace.

The Members of Hubpages

I really don’t think I could have asked for a kinder bunch of people to share my grief with then my online hubpages community. Everyone was so nice and would even help me in the beginning. Many of my HP friends I still maintain relationships with even though I have moved on to other endeavors. Hubpages became my support system and my family until I was strong enough to venture out back into the world. HP gave my deceased Mother a memorial, voice and me a venue to work through my grief.

How Did I Start?

I read everything but it still seemed like Greek to me. Actually, I am very good at Greek. HP two years ago was very different then it is today and I had failed to conduct research about the entire Panda debacle. I don’t watch TV unless it is to write reviews so I really lived in the Cancer/Autism bubble before coming to HP.

The simple answer is I wrote outlines and just had a go at it. Many of my hubs are substandard because they were written well before I knew what was considered to be a good hub. Currently, I am going back over my hubs, which is a bit daunting when I have 580 which I have all categorized as orphan hub, and I am polishing them up.

Initially, I did not want to do this because the grammar, spelling and other mistakes were all symptoms of my grief. I embraced my grief and wanted to document my recovery. My early articles are documentation of the healing power of writing. Literally, you can see a progression in my writing which clearly shows a more organized polished writer this year as compared to last year. I am healing from my grief from losing my Mother although I can never say I will ever completely be over the death of my mother. I will always miss her. When those days come, I sit and write and the pain is tolerable. In many ways HP and the HP community saved me from despair and drowning in my grief. I will never see this as anything but a completely positive experience.

So the simple answer is I wrote outlines, and then wrote until I could write no more. I read other writes' work. I learned a lot from reading their work which is important because everyone wants to make money. I would suggest the connections and the skills gained on HP are far more important. But yes, I have been paid by HP on several occasions. A lot of my pay is passive income because HP led me to other work.

Online Publishiing

Do You Think You Would Enjoy an Online Writing Career?

  • Yes
  • No
  • I had never considered it.
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How to Write Online Content

HP

Where HP Led Me?

Putting yourself out there as a writer every single day is not for the faint of heart although I have already stated that the HP community is a very nice positive group of people. But the experience gave me strength to try other things.

Before my Mother was diagnosed I was a researcher in verbal behavior. My work was well received and I attended graduate school and almost completed my PhD. So at the one year anniversary of my Mother’s death I opened up trials with my own money into assessing non-verbal children with autism. It is assumed that non-verbal children are low functioning or intellectually disabled but this may not be the case. Many of these children suffer from what is known as apraxia which is a fine motor coordination issue with their tongue. It has nothing to do with their higher cortical functions. As such, I designed a study to assess and enhance memory, self- editing and intraverbals in children who were non-verbal with autism. It was an incredibly ambitious project but I had Hubpages under my belt so I was ready to try something on my own. Interestingly enough I used my own money and money made from HP for this study. The results were mixed because of an experimental design flaw in the study. This was difficult to anticipate as it was an avant-garde trial. Only after I submitted the paper for review and it was suggested I redesign the experimental design did I find a professor who was doing similar work. I still was asked to present to the Florida Association for Behavior Analysts. It was quite an honor. And again everyone was exceptionally generous. I managed to walk away with trade secrets from my research so I have started a charity focused on providing early intervention to children with Autism. I am not finished fully incorporating but one thing at a time.

In the Middle of My Career with HP; One Thing Leads to Another

I wrote an article about Serial Killers I grew up with. That article caught the attention of one of the killer's family members who wanted me to call him but has an unlisted number. Then it was read by one of the victim’s family members before a parole hearing. The victim’s family asked me to assist in gather petitions to prevent the parole. I used the marketing skills I had learned on HP and HP as a forum to spread the word about the petitions electronically. We had been given very little notice before the parole hearing so we worked around the clock to make certain this murderer was not paroled. We were successful. Of course I do not expect to be paid for those articles. Actually I have been writing a lot of articles in which the ads are automatically disabled. Most of these articles are written as educational and social welfare pieces so I find this acceptable. An example would be the hub I wrote on The Value of HPV Vaccines.

For those of you who know my work, I write about everything. Most recently, I wrote an article about the adult film star James Deen who recently crossed over into the mainstream media. I saw the movie “The Canyons’ and thought he really carried the film. It is my opinion, he will be very successful because he has a certain intensity and screen presence which is rare. He also is not too hard on the eyes and seems to genuinely appreciate women which again is a rare quality in cinema. The ads were disabled on that article as well because he is an adult film star. I like to earn income but my work on HP is not financially motivated. Despite my motivations I have still managed to make money. I have also done some writing for local publications. Despite my best intentions not to be a writer, it seems I working as a writer atleast part time.

After Hubpages….

Well unless they shut the site down I don’t think there will be an afterwards. I will probably always come back to this community to write and share my experiences whether it is for financial motivation or just to read my friends' work. I can’t believe I have been with HP for over two years now. It just speaks to what a great community it is.

When I started I did not think I would last a week let alone over two years but I found a wonderful group of people, which helped me hone or should I write acquire new skills sets which has helped me become a viable marketable individual in today’s work force.

Advice From a Well Established Hub Writer on Joining HP

Here is an instructional video on the basics of writing hubs.

Polishing Your Hubs

This is incredibly important. First drafts are great but every single hub needs to be polished. The templates and evergreen rating system is exceptionally helpful. Those tools make it much easier to create a quality hub but remember to go back and polish. Please learn from me and do it before you have 580 hubs to go back over.

How to polish:

Start with your highest rated hubs which are not featured and evaluate what they are missing to make them feature quality then;

  • Edit, proof and edit some more.
  • Use Bullets For Quick Information Referencing
  • Charts are very helpful to illustrate points as well
  • Pictures bright up your hub
  • Video also enhances your readers experience

Here is a video on polishing your hubs

In Conclusion

Opportunities generated from Hubpages vary as much as the individuals who write for them. It is a supportive environment for budding artists or simple socially conscious people like me. Hubpages gave me a path to healing through grief, skills, and connections to people all around the world and the strength to pursue other opportunities. Art heals, although I would not presume to call myself an artist but happily and fortunately a member of the HP family.

Where will Hubpages lead you? I would love to hear.

© 2013 JT Walters

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2 comments

Drive By Quipper profile image

Drive By Quipper 3 years ago from Wrong Side of Town

Wow! You wrote a lot of Hubs. I like the Paris story. You should collect those and keep them all together somewhere!

Stay on track and don't look back.


JT Walters profile image

JT Walters 3 years ago from Florida Author

You are always awesome drive by! It is a deal as long as your one my side! Thanks Quipper!

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