How To Wrestle With Faith Or Sex Doesn’t Always Sell

Black hole wind
Five songs that are part of this post:

  1. Wedding Song- Bob Dylan
  2. Set Fire To The Rain (Live at The Royal Albert Hall)- Adele
  3. America- Simon & Garfunkel
  4. Hung My Head- Johnny Cash
  5. Tougher Than The Rest- Bruce Springsteen

Keep Walking Mr. Frodo

Every time I hear The Breaking of the Fellowship from the Lord of The Rings pieces of me are pulled in a million different directions and I find myself lost in dreams about places I have been and places I still want to see.

And somewhere in these moments I get lost because I think about the things that inspired How To Wrestle With Faith and shake my head in amazement and wonder.

That post isn’t religious in nature. You won’t find me proselytizing or trying to convince you to become a member of the tribe. Nah, that is my thinking out loud about life and wondering how I would find my way out of the labyrinth I was living in.

And now I am looking back and wondering how I made it.

Ordinary People Doing Extraordinary Things

If you want to understand all the parts and pieces of me you have to look at my love for stories and ask about what kinds of tales move me.

I love fantasy and action. Superheroes and dramas are a lot of fun too.

But sometimes what really grabs me are the tales of ordinary people doing extraordinary things. It is part of what I love about Frodo, in the story the hobbits are not who you expect to lead the charge or do the things they do.

FWIW, this is not an analysis of Lord Of The Rings or really any movie. I tend to stay away from that kind of stuff, school is over and I like suspending disbelief and just enjoying what I am watching.

And as a writer I can tell you that sometimes when I write that the man wore a black jacket it is not because I am trying to invoke symbolism of any sort. It is because the character likes black and there is no more depth to it at all.

Sex Doesn’t Always Sell or Does It

I haven’t had as much time to write as I want to nor have I had much time to go visit other blogs. In concept neither one of those should be significant problems but in practice I am not so certain.

The lack of commenting elsewhere has an impact upon traffic here and that is something I remain aware of. It bears noting because it has an impact upon the monetization of the blog and more importantly it has an impact on my writing.

If you are among the long time readers you know that I write because I love doing it and that I will continue to write whether anyone reads it or not.

However I realized a while back that if my goal is to become a published author there are benefits in generating more traffic because that leads to more comments/feedback on my writing and that is not a bad thing.

The feedback helps me understand whether my writing is compelling to more than a few or the kind of crap that is only read by refugees from the land of the burning river.

When you add in other factors such as the space being crowded and cluttered you can see why sometimes I create crazy headlines that I know will bring in traffic, but the fact is that sex doesn’t always sell and sometimes it is to a very select crowd.

It Is About Stories and Storytelling

Great stories make people stop what they are doing and that is what I want mine to be.  I want people to see I Taught Frank Sinatra How To Sing  and make time to read it because they know it is the kind of thing they don’t want to miss out on.

I owe so very much to blogging because it is where I rediscovered who I am and what I am supposed to do. It is where I maintained some of the most important connections in my life and the place that provided me with work.

It is also where I have spent quiet moments venting, thinking and considering about the important things in my life. It is where I think about how sometimes truth is stranger than fiction and that faith isn’t always based upon a higher power helping us.

Sometimes it is just belief that if ordinary people work hard, stay focused and keep moving they can accomplish extraordinary things.

What do you think?

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  1. Dorothy Adele June 23, 2013 at 3:42 am

    I know many people who have worked hard and have accomplished extraordinary things. Unfortunately, today some people expect success without working for it. Your post speaks volumes.

  2. Carrie June 22, 2013 at 10:36 pm

    I loved this post. It rings very true to most writers. How do you sell your craft without corrupting it? It’s a precarious balance and a hard one to find. If you always love it though then the numbers won’t matter.

    • Jack June 23, 2013 at 9:38 pm

      Hi Carrie,

      It is a very tough balance. If you don’t promote yourself you miss out on some very important opportunities, but if you push too hard…

  3. Kristin June 22, 2013 at 7:34 pm

    I used to be frustrated with the reluctance, usually outright and violent refusal, of people who press publish to accept any criticism that isn’t “Loved this!” or “Really great, made me laugh” on their pieces. But then I snapped out of it and realized that 1) most people with blogs don’t want to become better writers, they just want to vent/share/review/create content for $5 a pop or 2) I was spoiled as a teacher with a captive audience who took my criticism because they had to or 3) even when it’s surrounded by an assembly line theme and goofy font, any writing that’s honest – even partially so – is incredibly personal and for most people the scabs are not yet protecting their creative egos.

    So I stopped giving criticism unless expressly asked for it. Suffice it to say, I liked this post. And now I am going to click on “post comment” without going back to see how far off track my comment went from your original post. Because I’m tired. And because I can.

    • Jack June 23, 2013 at 9:37 pm

      Hi Kristin,

      I am a big proponent of being open to criticism in the comment section. When it comes to writing I admit sometimes getting crazy about it but that has more to do with frustration with people who don’t understand the difference between style and error.

      So much of writing is subjective. Sometimes you come across a piece that is sound but you hate because it is not your style. It doesn’t mean it is poorly written, it is just not your taste.

      I appreciate your comment and encourage you to feel free to continue.

  4. Pam Huggins June 22, 2013 at 5:16 pm

    I too am intrigued by ordinary people doing extraordinary things. Often that means just showing up like you’ve done today. Sex is overrated. Honesty and genuineness are underrated. I’ll take the genuine any day of the week. It’s why I like your post!
    Thanks for sharing.

    • Jack June 23, 2013 at 9:33 pm

      Hi Pam,

      The genuine posts always touch me, assuming they really are genuine. I am a bit jaded and skeptical at times so I occasionally wonder but…

  5. Natalie DeYoung June 22, 2013 at 9:01 am

    I think the same thing about ordinary people. I have to believe it – how else am I going to change the world? 😉 In all seriousness though, I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately; glad to see someone else is, too.

  6. Daniel Nest June 22, 2013 at 4:03 am

    Yeah blogging is an awesome world. It’s like a separate mini universe where a specific crowd hangs out.

    That also makes it a bit difficult – there are so many great blogs and to follow and regularly comment on them all is truly a full time job.

    Like you said – most of us write because we WANT to write – so you’ll always have that. If you’re enjoying the writing process, then there isn’t much more to ask for…well, except the billions of readers and trillions of comments, but, you know…meh.

    • Jack June 23, 2013 at 9:30 pm

      Hi Daniel,

      It is definitely a separate universe with little galaxies and planets. Time constraints often prevent me from spending as much time reading some of the awesome blogs I come across.

      But who knows, maybe we win the lottery and find lots of time to read and write.

  7. Karen June 21, 2013 at 9:47 pm

    I like that you provided a “soundtrack” in your opening. I could mentally hear each of those songs playing as I read through your post.

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