Blogging is an interesting thing. I often feel like I should only draft up a blog and hit “post” when I believe I have something worthwhile to say.
But sometimes I don’t want to write anything revolutionary. Sometimes I just want to write. Because I’m a writer. And I need a place to do that, even if it’s not that exciting. And if you have something that you love to do, and most of the time you do it well, it doesn’t really make sense to keep it to yourself.
I like to remember Jon Acuff when I write my blog. He is presently the best-selling author of Quitter, but when he started writing his first blog, Prodigal Jon, his readership was limited. But that was actually a great thing, because his blog gave him space. It gave him a place to write in one style, and then in another. To change his theme, his tagline, and his platform without having to worry about his audience or a perceived identity crisis. He had a place where he could express his love of writing and even do it poorly sometimes, practicing now what he hoped to produce later.
I’m currently reading Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life. I love this woman because she understands the beauty of books exactly the way I do, that out of “…small, flat, rigid squares of paper unfolds world after world after world…” She says that most writers come to her workshops and all they care about is being published. “How can I find an agent?” they ask. But they fail to remember that it’s not the publication that changes us (I know because I’ve been published), it’s the act of writing. It’s the feeling you get when words flow from your mind to your fingertips to create something beautiful. And then in days or months or even years to come, you look back at your work and ask with astonishment and delight (and sometimes humiliation), “Did I write that?” Lamott emphasizes that writers need to love writing not for the external benefits (which aren’t that lucrative, even for a best-selling author) but the internal ones.
And for that reason I will keep writing in this blog, even when I have nothing worthwhile to say. Sometimes I might write something inspirational, but other times I’m going to write about what I’m cooking for dinner, or my favourite cleaning products, or the craft I just made that I’m really proud of. And I’ll do it because when I string words together like beads I feel good inside, because I know I’m doing what I was created to do.