They say one characteristic of a successful blog is having a consistent topic.
Something unique where you can find a niche, hunker down in a dark room with a coffee pot, hype up on heart-palpitating doses of caffeine, and write, write, write!
Those who have been with me from the beginning have probably already noticed the range of diversity already. Lately I’ve been trying to think if I could settle into a certain subject matter in order to get a following.
Well, problem: I want to write about EVERYTHING. “BUSYmindmusings!” In any given day, I have at least five very different topics zipping through my head. As I type, I have counted 28 topics already picked out and organized in OneNote. They range from analytical to non sequitur, devotionals to (semi-)irreverent satire, poetry to prose memoir (yawn), essays to short-stories; I could write serious crap, funny crap, practical crap, philosophical crap, *horse cr – wait! I’m finding consistency throughout all of this: crap. I am a so full of crap!
My fellow writers will probably understand this. The hardcore of us could go an entire day without speaking a word and we don’t always make the best conversationalists. But there is a lot going on behind the blinds, and if you don’t get it all out somewhere you’ll DIE, or worse, LOSE INSPIRATION FOREVER. There is no middle ground.
Problem two: Work. Need I explain? No. But I will. It gets in the way of everything. I can’t count how many times a day I think of something brilliant (brilliant I tell you!), don’t have time to write it down yet plow on trusting I’ll remember in a spare moment. Yeah, Nichole, that always works…[face->palm.] Am I saying I’m one of those young people who doesn’t want to suck it up and earn my living with hard work and dedication? Heck yes that’s what I’m saying. Do I have the guts to ever live out that bum philosophy? Heck no I don’t.
Virginia Woolf famously said in A Room of One’s Own: “A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction.” Most of us don’t just have money, but most of us just have bills for those rooms of our own. Work: can’t write with it. Can’t live without it. Yet you live to write; write to live. Cursed necessity -_-.
Problem three: This may not apply to you, but I have to finish my education. I don’t know what the f-bomb I’m doing anymore, so I don’t know why. Especially since afterwards I’ll be expected to get yet another job – no – I’ll be expected to have picked out a career [DUN DUN DUNNNN]. [High-pitched scaredy-lady screech] I’m not ready/mature/fancy enough for a career! There is too much FUN to be had! Besides, I’m dang good at being a student.
This isn’t just an issue for young adults like myself, either. Many people are returning to the classroom in hopes of a earning more, or, as my friend’s son, have had an extended stay trying to “find” their selves. I’m afraid I’ll become one of those…
So, what is there to do about these here conundrums?
Solution to problem one: If you’re like me, you write because you don’t have much other choice; it’s a part of who you are. The best thing you can do for yourself is to simply do it. Don’t start off with big worries about readers, topics, whether it’s genius or dribble. Relax. Write. The rest can come with time if you end up deciding that writing for a specific audience is something you want.
As for this blog, while I absolutely love to entertain others, I started this thing for me and I’m going to try to keep it that way. Not trying to become popular or “successful” here. I’m just going to write, as I am wont to do, and hopefully whatever comes out on the other end will do good for my audience, too. At any given post be prepared to learn, think, chuckle, or whatever else. If one thing doesn’t catch your fancy, I hope you’ll stick around for something within the array of crap that will.
Solutions to problem two and three: Something I’ve learned, albeit the hard way: I can’t do everything. If I don’t have time between work and school-induced deadlines, I don’t add undue pressure by giving myself writing deadlines. Stressed writing makes for…stressed writing, at least on this end. Not to mention it sucks out all of the enjoyment.
I’m also learning to have paper available. Ideally, a single place to jot things down ensures even the little things aren’t lost. When I don’t have something like that with me, I’ll use a nifty note program on my phone. Or my laptop on lunch break. Then follow up on my notes in my relaxed spare time and build on them.
If that doesn’t cut it: stride into work after a dozen jello shots with shotgun; shoot out flammable gas line; bring place down in style. Squint eyes; blow smoke off weapon; bend down; pick up ten gallon hat that flew off from fiery shock wave; dust off; mount *aforementioned horse; gallop away in slow motion. Repeat on campus.
Create pen name.
Avoid authorities indefinitely.