Tuesday, 18 October 2011
It can all feel like a game and maybe I don’t wanna play
My writers’ conference messed me up.
(I mean, it was amazing. Good feedback, great insights into the industry, and permission to send my book proposal and chapters to agents and editors. No real results yet, but I’m learning patience.)
I mean with blogging. It messed up my blogging.
I took a great, thought-provoking, spiritual morning track on internet marketing. (Yes, I did say it was spiritual.) It was crazy full of great advice and insights and my typing fingers could barely keep up with all of it as I took notes.
And now I have all these words swirling in my head — audience, demographic, SEO, focus, write for readers, engage, analytics, optimize, traffic, subscribers.
The core message was great: People are looking for answers. When they type that question into Google, whose answers will they find? We have an opportunity to reach people with the truth, and here are the tools to do it.
Except when I get home and try to put all (or at least some) of it into practice, it feels hollow. Then a couple blog posts feel empty, or I force them, and I just know they weren’t born out of passion or pain or that spot in my gut that burns until I spill the words onto the page.
And it all feels like a big game. Linking up, retweeting, gaining a following, creating a Facebook fan page, and for what? Yes, I do have a message, and yes, I do think it’s important. It’s crazy important to me. But I feel like it can get lost in the shouting match for attention online.When I engage there and focus on that, even my message, my One Thing, gets diminished and I don’t really feel like going there — even there, where I know there’s healing and love and inspiration and hope.
In the end, all I really want here, in this space, is to tell my truth and let others tell theirs. I want people to be honest about their adoptions, or whatever journey they’re on, because even if it has nothing to do with adoption it’s sure to be filled with more pain and more beauty than we ever thought possible. When we open our hearts all the way up, we can be healed, finally and fully.
So this week, I went back to writing the next chapter, and it’s helped a bit. I think once I find the rhythm of the book again, I’ll find it for my blog again. And THEN I’ll be able to engage and add in those SEO terms and build a subscriber base and whatever else I’m supposed to do. I’ve heard it’s possible to build an audience even without a great topic or great writing, and that scares me more than trying at my passion and failing. It’s felt gross the last couple weeks to push content out there that I don’t completely love, that I’m not attached to.
If you’re still here, thank you. I promise to publish with heart and not strategy, with passion, not pressure.
Have you struggled to find your blog voice? What have you done to focus and stay true to your passion?