The most frustrating part of blogging is not seeing less talented writers gain accolades and acclaim that they don’t deserve but the feeling I get when I feel like my writing is letting me down. That is not to say that my ego never gets bent because it does. I am human and sometimes it irritates me to see second rate hacks who can’t write get more than they deserve.
Most of the time I don’t pay much attention to it and I focus upon my work. Call me a bitter curmudgeon or a clever conniseur of conflict management but I don’t expect most of those other guys to stick around very long. Popularity contests aren’t a measure of talent or worth which is why I don’t worry about whether I am included on lists of the Top Dad Bloggers or not.
My focus is on my writing and my community and that is as it should be. If I create compelling content and build a comfortable community than everything else will take care of itself. That is my theory and I am sticking to it.
I have come to understand that I was born restless and with a bad case of feeling like I am on the outside looking in. I am a seeker and a dreamer- an explorer who has a knack for pushing the envelope and trying to turn over every rock for fear that I might have missed something. It took more than a few years for me to become comfortable with that and to accept that the fire in my belly could warm my heart as well as burn me.
Britt did a nice job of touching upon some of this in a post called There Is Nothing Wrong With You. It was solid and that is why she got to present it as a Community Keynote speaker at BlogHer this year.
The beauty and joy of life experience is that if you open your eyes you learn something about yourself and how the world works. If you open your eyes you learn to know your own worth and you don’t settle for something that doesn’t make you want to jump out of bed and dance with joy and reckless abandon.
That is one of the lessons that I want to teach my kids. My life is in many ways exceptionally different from what I thought it would be and I couldn’t ever have predicted some of the twists and turns that it has taken. And even though there have been some terribly hard moments that have made me tear out my hear and gnash my teeth the majority has been beautiful.
I have had experiences that have opened my eyes to possibilities and opportunities that I never could have foreseen. Â And now I have dreams and ideas that I never did before.
I think about the people we miss and ask myself hard questions likeÂ Do You Live Your Dreams Or Dream Your Life because I believe that the journey is just as important as the destination. If I am to teach my children to not settle for less and to keep pushing than don’t I have to do it too. It is about a life worth living and the knowledge that I gave it all I had.
That is what this wanderlust and restlessness is about. It is about giving me the energy and impetus to keep pushing even when it would be easier to just accept things as they are. I don’t fault or blame people for doing that. If people are happy with the status quo of their lives than that is great, but it is not me. And it is in large part why even though I have those moments of feeling like I am on the outside looking in I tend not to care.
My words aren’t flowing the way that I wish they would and some of that is because I keep getting interrupted by tasks and errands that require my immediate attention. But part of the importance of writing every day is so that when I send out the call they come to me upon command. Life doesn’t always work as we wish it would and nothing will change that. The mean girls will continue to make appearances and the kids will keep asking tough questions. But I am a Better Father Than You Are so I don’t worry about it.
I’ll continue to follow the Rules of Blogging and do the best I can to continue build connections and community because that is what is important to me. Â With a little bit of luck, some effort and a dash of hope things should turn out in a most agreeable fashion. What do you think?
SeattleDad September 21, 2011 at 8:41 pm
Flashes in the pan they are. I have a hard time keeping up with all your post, but every one I do follows the spirit of the rules you spoke of. Way to go.
TheJackB September 21, 2011 at 9:15 pm
@SeattleDad James, I don’t expect anyone to keep up with me. I hope that they do but with the volume I put out it is unrealistic. But you have long been one of the most consistent readers/commenters here and I am grateful/appreciative of that.
TheJackB September 12, 2011 at 12:26 am
@janetcallaway Hi Janet. I just write what I see in my head. I think that because I am just an ordinary Joe the words resonate because my goals aren’t all that different from most people.
I am just trying to do the best I can to live a life that has meaning and value. I always appreciate your comments and your time here. Look forward to seeing you soon.
janetcallaway September 11, 2011 at 6:21 pm
Jack, aloha. You have a rare gift of being able to expose yourself, beautifully I might add, and in doing so you bring people together. Jack, I would say it is virtually impossible to read one of your posts without reflecting on your words and thinking if you agree. Your words bring forth emotions that demand attention.
Like you, Jack, I believe it is about the journey. Oftentimes as we travel down a road we realize the original destination is no longer for us. We come to the fork in the road and, for many of us, we “choose the road less traveled.”
Jack, keeping on writing because we look forward to reading what you have to say. Until next time, aloha. Janet
TheJackB September 11, 2011 at 12:24 am
@subWOW That cartoon is simply awesome.
subWOW September 10, 2011 at 5:44 pm
I scratch my head sometimes. But if you go back and check the blog by the mother who became immensely famous (or infamous depending on how you look at it) with this title “My son is gay” last year she is only getting a handful of comments now also. So what is fame really? And what is considered to be success if you are a “life’ blogger (as opposed to say technical gadget blogger, economics blogger or columnist really etc etc)? I think this cartoon explains a lot and also serves as a reminder to just continue to do this because we love it. http://www.weblogcartoons.com/2007/10/08/become-a-famous-blogger/
ExtremelyAvg September 9, 2011 at 5:47 pm
@TheJackB Thanks Jack…Henry and I appreciate the encouragement.
TheJackB September 9, 2011 at 6:44 am
@ExtremelyAvg Most of the time I don’t pay any attention to what other bloggers are doing. I see it as being no different than staring at the cars other people drive. Some of them own those cars and enjoy them while others are chained to a monthly payment that they can’t afford. In those situations it is no different than having an albatross strapped to your neck.
The most important part of blogging isn’t the recognition or lack thereof- it is whether you enjoy it or not. If you don’t have fun with it than it is work and who needs more of that.
I appreciate your coming by. I would expect that given time Henry Wood will continue to grow and that his name will become familiar to many more people.
TheJackB September 9, 2011 at 6:38 am
@SocialMediaDDS Hi Claudia. I appreciate your kind words and your visit. If you have questions about the thoughts and/or stories I share here you can always ask them in the comments.
I try to make an effort to respond to them. I don’t always get it done, but I try to do my best. I figure that if you take the time to read then I should take the time to reply.
I would write without my community because it is a part of me, but the community certainly helps make it more interesting and enjoyable. I appreciate you and the rest of the visitors.
ExtremelyAvg September 9, 2011 at 6:32 am
I am sorry you are feeling frustrated. I was able to build my traffic to 100 readers per day, but that was over a year ago, and it hasn’t grown since. I assume it is because I don’t know what I am doing or that people can’t get into reading my novels as serials. I am quite sure I should be either trying harder or blogging smarter.
I think you are are doing a really good job with your blog. If I knew how to help you become more successful I would gladly share it, but alas, I don’t. Keep your head up and I’m sure it will happen eventually. 🙂
SocialMediaDDS September 9, 2011 at 5:43 am
The blogging world is definitely graced with your presence, thejackb Even your random thoughts are filled with insight and feeling. There are many times when I read your thoughts and I want to stop you and ask you to talk more about that story….to me, that is a sign of a talented writer…someone who stimulates in the reader a desire to want/know more. The other compelling aspect of your blog is your strong ability to nurture your community. It is obvious that you have a loving and supportive community and that you, in turn respect and care for them. Keep those wonderful random thoughts and words coming. I am glad to read them.