I’ve been blogging now for over a decade–twelve years! But I still remember the trepidation I felt about sharing my crazy thoughts to the world.
Not that the world was paying much attention then. Or even now. (Except for you, faithful reader!) But you know what I mean.
A few years in, another friend in the biz–literally, she worked for a major craft show producer–asked Jon for advice about blogging. (He blogged for a living.) He shared some key concepts about brand, sharing expertise, establishing herself as an authority.
I listened, and when the phone call ended, I complained that the advice he gave my friend was excellent, but none of it applied to me. And I was feeling stalled in my own writing.
He laid the groundwork of what I was doing, an insight I didn’t have.
Jon said, “Most people who write about how to make a go of it, write after they’ve made it. Very few people write from the trenches in real time. You’re brave to do that. And people will respond to that, because it helps them where they are, in real time, too.”
This is why you may feel I’ve been “reading your mind”. I’ve learned if I’m feeling overwhelmed and baffled by my thoughts and behavior, and the behavior of others, someone else probably is, too. If I can find a way through the storm, I will benefit.
And if I share that process, someone else will, too.
And I decided if looking stupid, or vulnerable, or less evolved than others, that’s okay. Writing about it helps me get through it (hence the “muddling through” tagline). And hopefully, helps others muddle, too.
He told me two more important things about writing online: Whatever you publish on the internet is going to be around a long, long time. Links and platforms may die, but usually what’s written still languishes. (Like my blog at Radio Userland. It’s still there!) If you trash someone or something, or get nasty, or give in to lizard-brain behavior, it could come back to haunt you. I took that to heart. If I have a gripe, I seriously edit the identity of the entity, so the lesson, not the person, shines through.
There was another thing, but I forget.
So how am I finally on-trend?
Sadly, this also means I will be back OFF-trend in a few years. I can only hope that prehistoric cave animals become all the rage in 2018.