If you follow this blog but don’t usually read posts from start to finish, you might want to make an exception today. This is for all my readers. Every single one of you.
When things don’t go the way we plan, it’s not quite as easy to be grateful for what we have as it is when we feel like we have everything we need. It’s nothing to be ashamed of. It’s just part of being human.
It’s also not as easy to convey that humanity through a static web page than it would be if we were speaking face-to-face.
Which means, in writing one post per day to satisfy some kind of writing or life-related want or need or hunger, I have to rely solely on my words. Which, as you can imagine, is a hard thing to do on days I don’t know what else to say.
Sometimes I feel as though I’m repeating myself over and over again, always saying the same things, sharing the same ideas, never offering anything new to those who come here searching for it. In some ways running a daily blog by yourself results in brutal consequences just like this. You burn out. You step back and look at everything you’ve posted already and you think, “How can I possibly keep this going even one more day?”
But I’ve done that, every consecutive day since June. Five straight months of daily posts. Soon to be six, if this weekend doesn’t strip me of my motivation to push through the not-wanting-to-do-it mindset.
I don’t do this just for the fun of it or to prove something to someone. I made a promise to myself. I told myself that if I really wanted to transform this blog into something that would help people, into something meaningful, I couldn’t go halfway. It had to be all or nothing, otherwise, I knew I wouldn’t be able to give a (surprisingly) rapidly growing audience what it deserved.
As a result, I know a lot of you don’t come by often, and believe me, I understand completely. As a writer, my philosophy is that you absolutely cannot please everyone. Not every piece of content will prove helpful to every person. I’m not offended. I don’t take it personally. Because as a reader, my philosophy is that you should spend your reading time in ways that will help you grow and thrive, learn and achieve.
But at some point in the past seven months – or maybe you’re one of the very few who were here before I started Novelty – you stumbled upon my words, and read some of them, and decided, “Hm. Maybe this is worth a follow. Maybe this will help me, or someone I know, grow and thrive and learn and achieve.”
That, my dearest Noveltiers, is why I do what I do.
I used to have a running joke on Writer’s Blog/Heartfelt/Tales of a College Novelist that I had 2.5 readers, and would address them as such. Sometimes I still toss it in just for my own amusement. But there isn’t much merit in letting that gag live on, because it’s just not true anymore.
There are a lot of you out there now, and potentially a good portion of you are reading this right now. And the majority of that growth has happened since Novelty happened. And some days, I still can’t wrap my head around how. Why. What. What am I doing that’s so meaningful to all these strangers?
But time and again, I find the answer.
Whenever one of you leaves a comment, thanking me, or telling me how a certain piece of advice helped you with your story.
Whenever one of you subscribes to my newsletter, which is just a bonus weekly bundle of shenanigans from me that you don’t need, but subjected yourself to anyway.
Whenever someone new says, “Hey, I heard about this blog, thought I’d check it out and I’m hooked!”
I don’t deserve that. Any of that. I’m just a person. Lately, quite a miserable person with no direction or confidence or much of a reason to keep working so freaking hard. But you gave that to me. Every single one of you, just by stopping by, even if only for a minute.
Today, I am thankful for you. All of you. For many different reasons. But mostly, I’m just thankful I have behind me a group of people who believe in the power of thoughts and words and creation. Who believe writing, as complex and unpredictable as it may be, is an art and a science worth manipulating, worth executing, worth refining.
I’m not sure Novelty Revisions would be what it is today without you. Some days, it’s really all I have to cling to. I put my whole heart and soul into this. I don’t expect you to return after your first visit. I don’t expect likes or comments or for you to stick around for two or three or 20 posts. But sometimes you do. And that, to me, is beautiful.
Thank you for all you do. You continue to push me to put all my effort into making life an unpredictable adventure, one that will go on, thanks to you, for a very, very long time.
Enough with the sappiness. Go write some words. It’s what you’re best at, after all.
Image courtesy of Sean X. Liu / flickr.com.
Meg is the managing editor at College Lifestyles magazine, a guest contributor with Lifehack and a guest blogger for Food & Nutrition Magazine. She is an eight-time NaNoWriMo winner and has also written for Teen Ink and USA TODAY College. Follow Meg on Twitter.