By Steve McEvoy
Sunday mornings I rise at the crack of dawn. I pour myself a steaming hot cup of joe, black, no sugar. I whip through the New York Times crossword puzzle standing up, while I sip my coffee and watch the sun rise over the cedar hedge below the deck, so as not to waste any precious writing time. Then, with a flourish of my housecoat I dash off to the study, there to take up arms once again, to wrest, from the smithy of my soul, the unborn conscience of my race… No. Wait. Forget that last bit. I got a little carried away there. Actually, that was somebody else, altogether.
I blog though. I do.
Perhaps not quite as frequently as I suggest. One of the advantages of archiving online though, is, you can check. Unlike my past journaling attempts, sketches I’ve begun in moleskins, in hardcovers, in three-ringed binders, on napkins and on backs of envelopes; all those failed attempts that litter my trail like bread crumbs behind Hansel and Gretel, these online puppies actually turn up when you go looking for them.
I made five entries in 2009. The following year I wrote thirty-four. I appear to have reached a personal high-water mark in 2011 when the tally hit forty-four. There were ten in 2012, eleven in 2013 and so far this year, I’m showing a grand total of two, three if you count this one.
It sometimes feels like it’s hammer and tongs. I write for a couple of hours and then feel like I’ve been “rode hard and put away wet.” Maybe I’m not doing it right? Wikipedia says this: “A blog ( a truncation of the expression weblog) is a discussion or informational site published on the World Wide Web and consisting of discrete entries (posts)..”
So, posts? Ya. Check. Got ’em. One hundred and nineteen so far.
World Wide Web? For sure. Blogger. Great site. Check it out.
Published? Yep. One of the great joys of my life is to push that little orange “publish” button and watch as my chicken scratches transform Cinderella-like from the ashes and rise to the status of ‘posts.’
I’m reminded of a friend who re-read the recipe after serving up a dinner-party dish that failed spectacularly. “Oh!” she pronounced with a little, round lip-pucker of recognition “Oh..!, she said: “Cook the rice..”
Here’s a confession. I have no followers. Are you kidding? Most of that stuff should be cooped up in kegs and marked “explosive!”, never to be seen again.
I also have a Twitter account. As Tom Power would say, I’m “on the Twitter.” But I don’t tweet.
I have a LinkedIn account too. It’s mostly a pain in the butt. They keep sending me push notifications telling me about all the wonderful things that are happening online and inviting me to log in.
Every time I try, I end up stumbling blindly through some kind of primordial cyber-swamp. The people inside range from business titans to chance acquaintances, people I hope never to encounter again and old girlfriends hovering, chimera-like between the branches of the overhanging mangrove trees. As far as I can tell, I’m not linked in to anybody.
“The media landscape is rapidly changing,” Margaret Atwood intones. Paul McLaughlin said much the same thing at our October monthly meeting. Aspiring writers need to cozy up to social media.
That’s all very well, but I’m having some degree of difficulty hooking up. If you share my frustration, or an interest in learning more on this topic, try buttonholing a board member at your next meeting. Talk it up. Maybe we can get someone knowledgeable to shed some light on the subject.
Oh ya. And as far as that study goes, it’s more like an office really. Well, actually, it’s a corner in the man-cave. Alright, okay, it’s a desk.
Steve McEvoy is secretary for the Writers’ Community of York Region. Currently employed as a speech-language pathologist, he is able to write only occasionally as a re-kindled interest. Steve is mostly interested in fiction, which he loves to read. He also dabbles in short-story writing, and may eventually work up the courage to tackle memoir.