Before I began blogging I wish I had known how life-changing it would be.
I used to be very timid in my writing, I was careful and deliberate and thought more about the reader than about what I actually wanted to say. Grammar has always been my strong point and I would get caught up in form and punctuation and ultimately, lose the feelings I wanted to convey. And often, the feelings I needed to share were too real and raw so I would censor them, give everything a touch of “sunshine and roses” and then publish.
Early last year I found The Red Dress Club, an amazing group of writers working together to support each other. After weeks of stalking their weekly prompts I decided to commit, before I read the prompt for the week, knowing I would back out if I waited.
My response to the prompt I had committed to was obvious as soon as I read it. I would have to delve into the uncomfortable, relax (if you could call it that) and write. Pouring myself a glass of wine, I revisited a time in my life that was extremely painful and carved out every detail. By the time I was finished I was emotionally exhausted and afraid to hit the “publish” button. Sounds fun doesn’t it?
I went to bed that night and could not sleep, I was so nervous about all that I had shared. Such a personal experience I was releasing to my readers and the eyes of some very talented writers. I had no idea what anyone would think.
Ultimately I got out of bed and sat at my computer. I refreshed the screen a few dozen times before I saw comments begin to come in. Every one was supportive and complimentary and a big huge “hug” from people who were my mentors in writing.
The healing that took place after that first piece is unexplainable. Delving deep into my grief, into memories that I had pushed away, was difficult. Having them handled with care by so many was priceless.
I will always remember taking the risk and feeling my heart beat in my fingers as I clicked the mouse to publish that post. But the reward is something that continues to grow and will stay with me and my writing forever.
That piece, We Still Could, was ultimately syndicated by Blogher. My story was shared with more of the world and many more “hugs” were sent my way.
This post is linked up with prompt #1 for the #SummerBlogSocial. Want to join? Read all about it here.
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