III Hundred

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(zoomentertainment.com.au)

By: Wayne Brown

 

Just under ten months ago, I can remember pressing that button for the first time to publish my first submission on HubPages.com.  I did it with a lot of fear and embarrassment. I felt like a musician performing in front of others for the first time and wondering if I was not good enough to run with this pack.  Was I only kidding myself?  Would people laugh at what I had written even though it was not written in that way? All these thoughts came rushing forth and for a few minutes after I pushed that button the first time, I really wished that I could “un-push” it and get my story back safely hidden in my possession.  That was ten months ago.  With the posting of this writing, I will press that button again and this time it will be for number 300.

 

I have never participated in the income side of this writing effort nor have I joined in any contests like “30 hubs in 30 days” but  I suppose if you do the math you will see that I have averaged over 30 hubs for 30 days for the last ten months now.  So, it wasn’t that I was incapable of doing 30 hubs in 30 days, I just don’t care much for contests. I write more on inspiration that on goal I suppose.  I never really gave it much thought. Actually, I wanted to be able to play the guitar really well and sing but apparently God decided that I should write. It took me a long time and a lot of guitars to figure that out but I finally did.

 

I have certainly grown since I started writing here on the Hub.  I do not know that I am a better writer than when I started but I do know that I am more certain of my abilities now than at that time.  I also know that my judgments about what I write are not always the best ones. Many times over I have been wrong as to how a particular piece would be received. The reader has a very different perspective than the writer and as a writer I have learned to trust the reader.  That is a difficult step sometimes because, as a writer, you feel very exposed.  No matter how many good things I have written, it seems like my credibility always rides on the next piece of work.

 

I remember hitting the wall at around 30 postings on the Hub. It seemed that I could not get my creative juices flowing. I almost quit.  Luckily, I was saved by some of the friends I had made in the short time that I had been on the Hub.  I received much encouragement to hang on and keep working at it.  At that point, I could not imagine writing 50 items and certainly had no idea that I could reach the 300 mark.  That encouragement kept me going and I have never forgotten it.

 

In my effort to break out of my slump, I discovered something very important that would help me greatly over the next few months.  I discovered that I had been writing in my “comfort zone”.  I was not going outside the lines or using other colors in my big box of crayons.  On the one hand, I told myself that I was suffering “writer’s block” but on the other, I was making all these rules about what I wrote about and how I wrote about it to the extent that I was boxing in all my inspiration.  That realization taught me a valuable lesson but it was a lesson that did come with a lot of challenge as writing outside of one’s comfort zone does not come easy.

I made an effort to try new things.  I had some political savvy so I began to ply my hand at a few political pieces.  These came heavily from inspiration as I watched some of the political issues of the day play out and looked so hard to find something of common sense in the decisions that were being made.  When I could not find the rationale, my juices as a writer were flowing like a rain drenched creek.  It was not something I wanted to write; it became something that I much needed to write.

 

I could say that I learned to write poetry here on the Hub.  I could say that but it would not be true for I still know nothing about writing poetry in terms of the mechanics and technical aspects of it.  What I did was gain the courage to in essence, “play by ear” and express myself in poetic verse.  So much of what is written poetically is not always transparent and purposely so in many cases. A given poem can have so many meanings for each reader.  At the same time, I have encountered many poems over the years which for the life of me I could not decipher.  Thus my fear of verse, especially with me writing it! But I gave it a shot anyway with the promise that I would always attempt it in a manner that would give the reader a very clear idea of what I was saying and how I wanted them to feel about it.  I suppose it worked over time as I have certainly received my share of compliments though I see myself merely as a “lemonade stand poet”.

 

As time passed, I began to tackle more and more subjects both in storyline and in verse.  If I had an inspiration I tried to go with it.  My inspiration normally flows quite freely so after I have written the first few lines, things come very fast and fit together quite easily.  If I struggle greatly with it, I know that something is just not right with the idea and I have to revisit it.  Often, when I return, I discover that I am coming at the subject from the wrong angle. I change the perspective and it suddenly falls into place.

 

Often, like a songwriter, I just have a “hook line” or a catch phrase.  Sometimes I just write a single first line with no thought as to where it will go but waiting to see if it takes wings and flies.  This is what I call “letting my imagination go” and it has worked quite well in a number of pieces which I have posted here on the Hub according to the readers anyway.  In that light, I would not say that I am a “structured writer”.  I am not saying that structure is bad but I will say that too often I have read articles in which the structure and mechanics of the writing far overshadowed the content.  When that happens, the writer loses even though proper techniques were used.  There has to be a balance of discipline with content; quality with content, etc. etc. if one is to grab and hold the reader’s interest for any length of time.  This is the balance that all good writers must ultimately achieve.  Not that I am necessarily saying that “I am a good writer” but simply saying that I recognize that need in the writing skill.

 

I cannot stress enough the value of friendship and support that is evident here on the Hub.  I certainly would not be at this particular juncture had it not been for the encouragement and support that I have received from fellow writers here who review my submissions and provide feedback.  They, more than anything else, give me the courage to go outside the lines and try a new area or subject.  I can think of no other way to gain confidence and grow skills than to have that feedback.  Can you imagine writing alone in solitary for years and years with no one reading it and providing feedback?  I believe there is a stage that every writer goes through in which they lack confidence in their work and are reluctant to share any with few if any others.  While that fear is understandable, sooner or later, one must come to the conclusion that you cannot be a writer and not share what you create.  It is that sharing that validates the skill and the artistic abilities of the person creating the storyline or verse.  Every writer must drive through that fog and get to the other side with the courage and the confidence to believe in themselves and their work.

In that respect, the Hub is absolutely a remarkable place to work through to make those desired gains.

 

In the past three hundred hubs, I have written about a large number of political issues like illegal immigration, healthcare, taxes, voting, historical events, and the gulf oil spill.  I have written fictional stories of dark subjects, science fiction, human interests, musicians, western subjects, and humor.  In verse I have tackled humor, nature, beauty, women, love, heartbreak, outer space, the moon, and even the kitchen sink and a brick.  In reviewing the subjects, it suddenly dawns on me that I could have another inspirational wall in my future real soon. No doubt, I will but I don’t worry about that anymore because I know that I have friends here who will help me work through it and encourage me to continue on in some manner.  Just knowing that brings a lot of inspiration to me to keep trying.

 

Those of us who write do it for a variety of reasons.  For some, it is a very methodical approach to earning some extra income. For others, it is about creativity…taking nothing and using your imagination to turn it into something others can appreciate.  There will always be that group that is looking to find their own self-confidence, their own sense of artistic expression and the courage to express it.  There is an old adage that states “there is a book in all of us just looking for a way to get out.” That is likely true yet most folks never hear the call and many of us who do spend a long time gaining the skills necessary to write that really good book.  My sister, who is one of my biggest fans, always reminds me that one of her favorite authors, John Grisham, sold his first books out of the trunk of his car. She always tells me that she dreams that she will help me sell my first that same way. I sure hope she is right but first I have to find that book within me.

 

Writing on this site has done much to affirm my confidence in others and I constantly marvel at the talents they display in their writings.  There is hardly a day that goes by that I do not come across a new writer with a new subject and a new twist on thing. It may be a poet who can find just the right words and phrases to paint a canvas in the reader’s eye, or it may be a storyteller who can put me right there amidst those things so vividly described in the writing.  Each one makes you want to find a little more yet for the size of this pond of roughly 150,000 writers, one realizes very quickly how easy it is to go unnoticed.  I suppose that gives meaning to that “fifteen minutes” of fame that all of us supposedly have at one time or another in life.

 

Here’s to everyone who reads and encourages my work and here’s to 300 more hubs in the coming months.  Thanks to all!

 

© Copyright WBrown2010. All Rights Reserved.

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Comments 21 comments

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 6 years ago from Rural Arizona

Wayne, great hub my friend. You said exactly what thousands of others have wanted to say, but just never did it. You are an awsome writer and I hope you continue to provide us with your great hubs for a long time to come.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

@Old Poolman...You can bet I will try hard to do just that, sir! I am proud to have you enjoy my writing and I appreciate your support! WB


CMerritt profile image

CMerritt 6 years ago from Pendleton, Indiana

Wayne, you was one of my first hubbers to follow. I admire your style of writing. One of the things I am trying to learn, is how to put your thought to words. It seems to me tha you do this very easily.

I am on twelve, and not sure WHEN, I will spit out another. You have me thinking towards poetry, which something I have not done since high school. YOU, have got my wheels turning.

Thanks and congrats on III Hundred

:)


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

@CMerritt...Listen, if I can do poetry, anyone can! LOL! It is a great break for the mind and helps to rejuvenate your ability to come back and write in other areas I think. In many ways things do come to me somewhat easily but keep in mind what I said about structure and don't get tangled up in fitting to an outline when you really kind of already know what you want to say. You can always clean up when you do your edit. The key is to let your mind run with the subject rather than restrict it to a hard line. I have several pieces that took on a completely different shape than the original idea just because I did not restrict my thought processes as I began to write it. Once you feel that freedom, you don't have the guilt of not sticking with the plan. Plans are good but plans that are never executed are worthless! Good luck and write that poem! WB


50 Caliber profile image

50 Caliber 6 years ago from Arizona

Wayne, Mi Amigo, I've not read all 300 but I've been entertained by many of them, I've got some favorites you've done and the one that sticks out foremost was about the runaway kid and the old feller who faded into the sunset in the end, it was great!

I'm looking forward to more, good Lord willing, Peace Dusty


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

That'd be "Coyote Call" Dusty...that's one of my favorites as well. Really glad you liked it. I hope to be able to turn out 300 more that have some good ones there too...time will tell. Thanks my friend! WB


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 6 years ago from England

Hi, Wayne, well done for the three hundred, I have a long way to go yet! but I totally understand what you mean about having people read your work. I wrote a book years ago, and sent it off, and of course it got rejected, like it does, and it is still sitting in a drawer somewhere, if only I had someone at that time to read it and give me encouragement I might just have got it edited and re-posted, so I totally agree with you, and well done, I look forward to the next three hundred! cheers nell


drbj profile image

drbj 6 years ago from south Florida

Congratulations on the first 300, Wayne. You have been responsible not just for quantity my friend, but for quality as well. Here's to the next 300. I look forward with anticipation to reading them.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

@Nell Rose...You just need to get on one of those self-publishing sites like lulu.com and publish that book yourself...You can probably do it for a few hundred dollars and maybe you can sell some and recoup the investment! Thanks for your good words and keep on hubbin'! WB

@drbj...Thank you. I am so glad that you appreciate the quality. I love it when I find that in a new writer here on the hub. I just hope that I can continue to turn out fun and interesting pieces for the future. Thanks for you kind words! WB


Micky Dee profile image

Micky Dee 6 years ago

Keep up what you're doing. You're doing it well! This "writing by ear" is working better than most that are writing from the University of Ditto!


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

@Micky Dee...Thanks Micky, glad a few folks like it anyway! WB


MartieCoetser profile image

MartieCoetser 6 years ago from South Africa

This is a hub right out of the heart of a true writer. Congratulations with this number 300! You could have fooled me forever – I thought you were a seasoned author and poet. Every writer does have a book or three in him. I hope you’ll discover yours soon. Take care!


saddlerider1 profile image

saddlerider1 6 years ago

Congratulation my Texas hubber. You are also one of the first hubbers I started to follow and have not seen one disappointment. You keep raising the almighty bar higher and higher and with every new write whether prose or verse you get better.

I wouldn't miss a hub you write and there have been many, so congratulations for reaching your 300 your 100 hubscore is soon to follow. Looking forward to many more hubs from you. peace my friend you are a creative gifted writer.Bravo as I salute and tip my hat to Wayne Brown..


ladyjane1 profile image

ladyjane1 6 years ago from Texas

Wow 300 hubs thats great it took me the same amount of time to only get to 100 so you are way ahead of me. I liked the video it was very creative and I like that song. As for the writing, I know what you mean, when I first started here I cringed at the thought of pushing that publish button as if someone would come through the screen and say, "who do you think you are, a writer"? But I got the courage and I try to just write about what I know and I try my hand at fiction and poetry at times. Fiction is way hard for me to write so I think I will try to work on that so I can get out of my comfort zone maybe. Anway, great job on your first 300 and you still got it and I will be supporting you for the next 300 hubs. Cheers to you pal.


lorlie6 profile image

lorlie6 6 years ago from Bishop, Ca

You are such an inspiration to me, Wayne! Your discussion of writer's block and inspiration speaks volumes to this writer, and I thank you for that.

Congratulations on your first 300!!


C.A. Johnson profile image

C.A. Johnson 6 years ago from South Hutchinson, KS

It was once said that a writer is only as good as their next story. I don't believe that, I believe that the strength of a writer is in writing for themselves and appreciating others that may enjoy the words that a writer chooses to share.

As writers we provide the service of giving witness to life through our eyes and granting others a different perspective regardless of whether the piece is based in truth or fiction. I have enjoyed your sense of humor, your views, and seeing life through your eyes. Please, continue to be a witness for as long as you have breath. It is quite simply the greatest gift you can give.

Charlotte Ann


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

@MartieCoetser...Thanks so much Martie. Maybe one day I can claim all those labels...for now, I'm just hubbin'!Thank you so much for your support! WB

@saddlerider1...Aw Ken, I don't think either one of us would have last long here without the other. I so value your opinions and your friendship and I so much appreciate your support...you have done much to keep me here writing my friend! WB

@ladyjane1...If I wrote with your quality and style, I dare say that I would be at 100 at the present. You have such a smooth ability to share information. I hope that you will push yourself with the fiction because I really believe that you have a great imagination! Thanks much for your support! WB

@lorlie6...You write very well and I know that you can do even more if you just let go with your imagination and go with it. I think you can have a lot of fun and so can we! Thanks so much for your comments! WB

@C.A. Johnson....You are so right with what you say, Charlotte. I think there are books in me but I need that "Cabin In The Woods" to bring them out. You have been a true inspiration and supporter of my work and I so much appreciate it! WB


quicklysilver profile image

quicklysilver 6 years ago from wexford, ireland

well done on your 300 and anopther good article. My first time i couold not wait to press the publish button but I would still class myself as a publicly shy person. what you said about the comfort zone is very good as I have seen with my hubs the hubs i get the most views with are the hubs I work harder on and sort of wreck my brain as i write them.

keep up the good work and thanks for the photo of you in a bikini in the video opener


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

@quicklysilver...Thanks so much and yes I do look good in a bikini...except for the hairy legs! LOL! Keep working outside the lines...that's what makes it fun! WB


blake4d profile image

blake4d 6 years ago from Now Rising Out of Phoenix Arizona Earthlings

You absolutely rock WB. You beat me to the III100 mark on Hub Pages, and I take my hat off to you brother. What a great accomplishment.

And what a body of work you are building. I am so going to be envious of this for weeks now....LOL

You know what I am gonna tell ya.

But noone needs to obviously.

Keep on Hubbing. My Hubbalong Friend. Blake4d


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 6 years ago from Texas Author

@blake4d...Thank you...very kind words and I do appreciate them. Poetry increased my numbers and moved me along. I think it accounts for around one-third of my work at this point. I have never really had any target other than to write with quality and I sure hope that I have sustained that in my efforts. Without it, the numbers are meaningless...with it, they are everything in terms of having a sense of accomplishment. Thanks for the great comments. WB

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