Monday, January 9, 2012


I only made three New Year's resolutions this year. I'm sticking to two of them pretty well, but the third one, the one I thought would be the easiest to keep, is turning out to be the hard one. I'd resolved to get back to writing for publication this year. It's been a while. I've spent the last year or so just writing whatever I wanted to for this blog, enjoying the indulgence and freedom of writing what I want without worrying whether any of it was marketable.

Now I feel like I've lost touch with the world of publishing. In the past week I've come to realize that I don't think in quite the same way. I researched some writing markets and began thinking up article ideas but have yet to actually sit down and flesh out the ideas. Instead, I think how easy it would be to just post these articles on my blog.

Now I'm starting to understand why some of the bloggers I've followed have recently sent out notices that they've given up their blogs to devote their time and attention to their works-in-progress. I'd thought it was due to a lack of time and energy to do both, but maybe it has more to do with focus. I am already finding it difficult to focus my thoughts toward both approaches (blogging and article writing).

I don't want to stop blogging; I like writing daily. It keeps me on my toes. I guess what I really need to re-assess is whether publication is that important to me? I'd like to get back into magazine writing, but maybe not as much as I think I want to. I know I don't have to make a choice; I can do both. But first I want to give some thought to my motivation for doing so. Do I want bylines and money? Do I need validation that that makes me a legitimate writer? Or do I really want to write for magazines because it gives me as much satisfaction as writing a blog does?

I see that I am anything but resolute on January 9th.


  1. It's a hard balance to strike, for sure. There are definitely moments where I wonder if I should be spending so much time online -- not just blogging, but keeping up with other blogs, twitter, Facebook. At the end of the day, I enjoy it. It's my hobby -- I don't knit, work out, or play music. I'm just social, in a technological way. And I don't want to give that up.

    But I also know that it's easier to be social than it is to work hard, and too often I let myself take the easy path as opposed to the right one. This year -- every year -- I need to make sure my priorities are straight. Book first; everything else can come after. The truth is, there are enough hours in the day -- in my day anyway, since I quit my job. Now I just have to make sure I use them wisely.

    I don't think it's as much about that for you -- I'm guessing you're better at prioritizing than I am. I'm definitely in awe of how you balance family, work, and writing. So don't beat yourself up if it takes a while to figure out how to add one more thing into the mix. You'll find the right way.

  2. Aw, thanks, Kristan. It's a balancing act for sure. I think you do it beautifully. Making the commitment to write full-time was a courageous step. One I wish I were brave enough to make, though writing full-time also lends a certain pressure to writing that I'm glad I don't have.

    But you're right - there are always enough hours in the day for what's important. Blogging and socializing electronically is a fun hobby that I have no intention of giving up. Re-entering the freelance world is entirely separate. We'll see how it goes.