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Writing: It's Just "Air" For Bloggers.
The Write Choice
For the past six months, I've been pretty hard-core about keeping up with my blog. I write every day, with the exception of weekends, and I'm fairly conscious of the time when it comes to getting my stories published. But it isn't always easy, and I've learned a few things along the way that have left me wondering if I'm missing anything else–even though I know I still am.
Don't Be Like Me... Go To College!
As much as I wish that my parents had given me no other choice but to pursue an academic career, I never applied to one single school. Instead, I partied and drank myself into a fictitious career based on luck and stupidity, then ultimately stormed off on a mission to go nowhere. But there was a brief period, when I was working for one of the biggest conglomerates in the World, where I was given the opportunity to go back to school–and it came at a price that I couldn’t afford to pass up.
For a while, I was excited... It was fun learning new things and meeting other students that shared my remorse for not obtaining a higher education. And when an energetic comedian came into the class to teach "Theories of Communication," I thought I'd never want to leave. Almost all of our assignments were essays and I, for one, was thrilled to be given a chance to write for someone who actually wanted to read what I had to say.
My last paper was entitled, "Women!" It was my theory on why women allow men to dictate how they feel about themselves. When he handed it back to me the next week, it was covered in red ink from all of his editing notes. And at the very bottom of the page, written in barely legible chicken scratch script, was a personal note from him, "Great work, as usual! You should look into graduate school!"
But I never did.
My academic career came to an abrupt end when I became so annoyed with the lack of participation on my "team" that I opted to go back to doing what I do best: Dodging my fear of failure. It was, after all, the one thing I knew I'd be good at.
That was exactly twenty years ago and makes me cringe every time I think about it. During that span, I was married, divorced, remarried and had a child, built and dismantled a business, and proceeded to waste any talent that I might have had on doing whatever I had to do to in order to keep my daughter in private school.
And I did, for a while.
- Gotham Writers' Workshop - Creative Writing Classes in NY and Online
Teaching more than 6,000 students a year, Gotham Writers' Workshop is New York City's largest private creative writing school for adults and teens. 10-Week classes are offered at multiple locations in New York City and Online at WritingClasses.com.
Which brings us to today, where I sit at my desk trying to construct words on a page that someone might want to read one day. And as my fingers tap away into uncertainty, I continue to find myself learning new things about writing, blogging and knowing when to ignore my inner critic. The truth of the matter is that I actually enjoy it–even if no one else does. And the notion of giving it all up out of fear or rejection is just something I simply can't do.
And I won’t–even if it means taking a class or two (or three, or four...).
I've been faced with some ongoing challenges while pursuing my new career, and some of them are worth taking note. For example, are you aware that you could be sued just for posting images on your blog that you found on the Internet? And, did you FURTHER know that there are about a zillion "royalty free" websites that will charge you a shit-load of money just to use the same image that the other guys have on their page? Yep... There's that! So now, on top of writing a story about how my dog wound up in a Mexican prison, I have to create my own image to go along with it! Blasphemy!
- 30 Powerful Quotes on Failure - Forbes
Whether we like it or not, failure is a necessary stepping stone to building our dreams. Here are 30 quotes that will hopefully inspire you to look at failure differently.
Words To Live By
"I can accept failure, everyone fails at something. But I can't accept not trying."
~ Michael Jordan
Fear: The OTHER Four Letter "F" Word!
Which one of them is stopping you?
Hell... You can even make your own animation!
It's All About Options!
Luckily, there are free resources you can use; such as Bitstrips, Stripgenerator and Pixton, that will help you devise your own devilish parody–but you'll still have to do the work! And who's going to build your website when you’re an unemployed, starving artist? Are YOU going to do it? Yep, you bet your ass you will! But it's easy, thanks to all the free tools out there like Blogger, Weebly, Tumblr, and my new soon-to-be best friend, HubPages. Then there's the issue of not having an Editor, despite the obvious need. Sure, you can whip out your checkbook and pray that they don't cash it before they finish proofing your article. But eventually, they will and you'll be right back where you started... In your office, trying to figure out the difference between gray and grey.
But guess what? There’s a tool for that, too!
HubPages is your online space to share your advice, reviews, useful tips, opinions and insights with hundreds of other authors. HubPages is completely free, and you can even earn online ad revenue!
Free weblog publishing tool from Google, for sharing text, photos and video.
- Sign up | Tumblr
Post anything (from anywhere!), customize everything, and find and follow what you love. Create your own Tumblr blog today.
- Free website | Free blog | Create a free website | Weebly
Named one of TIME's 50 Best Websites, Weebly gives everyone a surprisingly easy way to create a unique site. Make a free website, blog or online store with our powerful website builder.
- Pixton | World's Best Way to Make & Share Comics
Create your own cartoons with fully posable characters & animals! Upload pictures, create freestyle panel layouts, add sound & voice-over, and much more! Join our growing vibrant community. Pixton is awesome!
- Stripgenerator.com - Comic Creating Community
Create and enjoy comic strips with fantastic ease. Join the friendly community, making comics has never been this fun.
- Bitstrips - Comics starring YOU and your Friends
Bitstrips is your online funny pages. Turn yourself and your friends into cartoon characters, and create and share your own awesome comic strips!
- Grammarly | Instant Grammar Check - Plagiarism Checker - Online Proofreader
Grammar check, instant proofreading, and plagiarism detection. Improve your writing with Grammarly - the leading online English grammar and plagiarism checker.
Check Your Grammar BEFORE You Publish!
In a world where technology is king, there is no excuse for not checking your text before clicking the submit button ––so DO IT!
Grammarly is an online grammar checker designed to aid in your attempts at fooling others into thinking you know you're shit (see what I did there? Grammarly did, and it's telling me to fix it right now)! I'll admit, their vision isn't exactly 20/20 and sometimes they miss a few things or complicate it with too many rules, but every little bit helps when you’re trying to put it outthere for all the World to critique, and I'm not too proud to admit that I use it.
Always Be Learning
There are a million things that need to be done when it comes to writing a blog, and unless you’re reeling in a decent amount of cash as you’re fishing off that merciless pier, it’s all going to be on you. Every day, I seem to acquire a new skill. I've gone from wannabe writer to inspiring cartoonist who moonlights as a part-time social media strategist. And although I've yet to fully master the art of my heartfelt craft, it’s no longer because I'm afraid to try, or to fail... Or even to succeed. It is simply because I'm still learning, which is something I wish I would have tried long ago.
It is never too late to be what you might have been.
~ GEORGE ELIOT
I've always wanted to be a writer. But for whatever reason, I never thought I could... Until now.
© 2014 Lisa René LeClair