To catch up on the first part of My Writing History click here.
Now here’s Part 2 of My Writing History.
I wrote very little in the early years of raising my children. I desperately wanted to write about my experiences with motherhood and raising children, but was simply too tired to put pen to paper. I spent every waking hour working or raising my kids. My house was a mess. Everything else fell to the wayside. With the birth of my third child, I had an awakening that I could no longer do the long hours of work at night and be a functioning, coherent mom to my kids during the day, so I took a few years off.
During my “stay-at-home mom years,” I started writing in my journals. I wrote when I could. Without work looming I had more time to spare. The kids were able to play by themselves. The baby was on a reliable napping schedule. I wrote. I read books. I discovered online journals and later came to realize that these were blogs. I researched jobs I could do once my children were all in school.
I longed to be a writer, but was unsure if anyone would hire an untrained writer. I had no writing credentials, except for what I wrote at my last two jobs. I was still writing in my journal, but knew I needed training. I found a graduate program for writing and graphic design. I didn’t love the graphic design part…I was OK but never felt confident in my skills. The writing part of the graduate program was another story (pun intended!).
I started writing a blog — NowItIsMyTurn.blogspot.com — for one of my graduate school design and writing classes. Fair warning…the blog design is not visually appealing. It’s ugly. It’s on Blogger. But that blog gave me a platform, a voice. I was “free” to post what I wanted, when I wanted, and not care who read what I wrote. I took a leave of absence from the graduate program to figure out what I wanted to do with my life. A weighty questions, for sure.
When I started the design blog, I also created another blogspot blog for just my family. This blog was intended to be an online scrapbook of sorts. A photo album. A journal of my family and for my family to read and cherish. This blog became so much more than an online scrapbook. This blog became my outlet for writing. It became the quiet place that I retreated to write. It has become my business.
I wrote my first post on January 2, 2008. My blog had the impossibly long name: WritingMyLifeOneBlogataTime.blogspot.com. Why did I come up with such a long name? And isn’t it cute how I thought that a blog was the same as a post? Ooof. I’ve come A LONG way from those early days of blogging.
Here’s what I wrote on that first post:
I sit here with this whole blog before me. What have I gotten myself in to? Will I update regularly? Will I have anything noteworthy to say? Will I be able to write/speak freely? Will I be able to stay undercover/incognito?
All of these questions are unanswerable at this point. I won’t be able to answer them until I have experienced this “world of blogging.”
Suffice it to say I am looking forward to giving it a go.
I started writing daily on my new blog. To set a record and get in to the swing of writing I set out to write a post a day. In typical “me” fashion I wrote a Day 1 post, and another on Day 2 post, then skipped a few days before writing a post on Day 5, before giving up completely. Soon enough I stopped with the daily posts, too hard to keep up with.
I got in to the swing of blogging. I wrote regularly. I wrote about my oldest’s 12th birthday celebration. I wrote about a ski trip to PA. I wrote about buying our first family gaming system…the Wii during our 2008 staycation. I posted silly memes that I found on Facebook. I was writing for me and I loved it.
But I longed for commenters. I didn’t understand SEO or blog traffic. I wrote for myself…mostly. I wasn’t ready to announce to my family that I had a blog, but I desperately wanted to share my writing. I read other blogs and got ideas for blogposts. I wanted a better looking blog with a cute header, but didn’t have a clue how to go about getting one. I started doing product reviews and writing about them on my blog.
Soon I was sharing posts through social media. I joined Twitter in June 2008. I was an early adopter to Facebook, too…joining in August 8, 2008…just before my youngest started kindergarten. Over six years later, I am STILL writing on this blog…renamed MusingsfromMe.com a year after I launched.