I started blogging because people kept telling me I should. All my friends. My husband. My family. I’ve always been a writer, professionally and personally. I’d been sick a lot and for a very long time. A decade of being on the edge of dying is a lot of dying time and I was finally beginning to be a person again. The siege was lifting.
Facebook never did it for me. I never liked the format, the scattershot nature of posting. I have so many connections that aren’t friends, just people with whom I played various games. Even my circle of “friends” wasn’t a natural audience.
I had been following a WordPress blog for some months, ATMTX PHOTOGRAPHY BLOG. Every time I wanted to comment, I had to go through an annoying identification process unless I registered. One day, I registered. I picked a name for a mythical blog I might want to write. I chose Serendipity because I’m a serendipitous kind of gal. I had absolutely no intention of doing anything with it, but it made following other peoples’ blogs and commenting easier.
That was January 2012. In February, I put up an “About Me” page and posted a photograph because as an enthusiastic amateur, I have a great many pictures. Thousands, though many are not good enough to post anywhere but a family album. Still, there were some I thought someone besides my husband might enjoy. It was more than a month before I posted anything else. In March, I posted once, maybe twice. In April, not at all. In May, I found myself posting a couple of times a week. It was like writing letters. I wrote about whatever was on my mind or had caught my interest in the news. The presidential campaign was heating up, though it wasn’t red-hot yet.
Summer was slow. Vacation kept me away a lot. I posted, but it wasn’t particularly interesting or exciting material and my numbers reflected the ho-hum quality of the work.
And then, it rolled into August. Political hell broke loose. America became engulfed in a civil war of words on the Internet. I jumped in too. My numbers soared overnight. When Sandy, the Monster Storm, hit in September, it gave me plenty to write about. October was all-out class warfare. November. Election and aftermath. A tsunami of opinion, violence. Craziness everywhere. It was my biggest month, bringing in numbers I haven’t matched yet.
By then, I was posting daily, more than once a day. I was reblogging other people’s work. I had found friends and colleagues on the Internet. We used each other as sounding boards and still do. The sense of community was not theoretical. I was part of it and I loved it.
The months have rolled on. I still have no goals. The question keeps coming up and I really think about it, but no matter how long and hard I ponder the question, I can’t find a reason better than my original non-goals. I love to write. I have a lot of opinions. And blogging gives me my own space to post photographs where people other than my immediate family can see them.
I’ve achieved much more than I ever imagined because I never imagined anything at all. I’ve gotten close to 73,000 hits and although I’ve never been Freshly Pressed, apparently there are people who think I’m interesting enough to follow. I’ve made a difference to a few lives.
To know I’ve actually made a difference is a great feeling. Addictive.
I have a focus for my time, a way to use the words roiling around in my head. In my working years, I always wrote for a defined goal and was paid for it. Now, at last, I can write about anything. I have no boss, no word limit, no corporate guidelines. Sadly, I don’t get the paycheck, but I have freedom. That’s worth a lot. And I’ve got a reason gear up, grab my cameras and go take pictures.
I’ve gotten much more than I ever imagined or expected.
Goals? What more could I need or want? Oh, I know. Send money? Please?
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