Friday, June 24, 2011

Cling to the Podium. Don't Sway.

This is my first blog post, and forgive me, I’m a little nervous.

Until now, I have focused on writing for publication. My projects are shared only after much revision, critique, more revision, and finally (if ever!) an editor’s approval. I love to write, so why shouldn’t I love to blog?

Blogging feels a little like public speaking. In front of a crowd, my heart thumps and my knees tremble. I have an embarrassing tendency to sway back and forth, as if standing on a rocking horse. Will I blog like that? Will my words wander so much, readers get dizzy? Or worse, what if no one reads it or comments? The fear of failing drives my heart into arrhythmia.

Writers track blogs by agents, editors and other writers. (by The Nielsen Company) has identified more than 163 million blogs. Not all for writers of course, but still… What can I add to the blogosphere?

Blogging advice says that I must choose a good topic -- ‘evergreen content.’ I must not be an ‘echo chamber’ simply recirculating others’ ideas. My own twisted concern is the immortality of my text in the blogosphere. Will I be happy with myself in retrospect?

I don’t know yet, but I have to try.

With public speaking I learned to practice – in the mirror, in front of my husband. On stage, I make eye contact with one friendly face in the audience, and if necessary, cling to the podium.

My blogging technique will evolve. At least it’s not tweeting – the dangers of that are fresh (don’t Weiner or Sheen-er).

I have to embrace the opportunity. To paraphrase Woody Allen, 80% of life is just showing up.

I’ve grabbed my Mac, and you can’t see me sway. Bring on the blog.


  1. Julie,
    The first time you post is a little nervous-making, but you've done a great job - even a picture!

    And yes, it's a lot easier than live speech making . . . you can edit a little even after publication. A few times I've gone back in to change my awkward wording, or to make a point clearer.

  2. Thanks Gale! It's great to get started.

  3. Julie....hmmm, wondering if I should scare you by feels that way every month!! At least for me. I totally understand what you are saying about not being an "echo chamber". It's hard to come up with something fresh, but I suppose it's that way with writing too. Whatever topic you choose is going to be fresh because it's through your eyes! Can't wait to see where you take us...welcome aboard :)

  4. Hi Julie: It's so nice to have you on board. As far as feeling nervous about posting goes, the words of a former co-worker helped me out. He was a columnist for a big London newspaper. He said that when you write regularly and on deadline, you have to give yourself permission to not be brilliant every time; some pieces will just turn out better than others. Of course, I shoot for brilliant, but if I fall short, there's always next time! So have fun, and I look forward to reading your posts.

  5. Thanks guys! I hope at least the 'stage fright' will wear off a little (and it already has really). And that's good advice about not having to be brilliant every time -- takes a little pressure off, which sometimes allows for more inspiration! It should be fun, and I'm looking forward to it!

  6. Julie

    Enjoyed your post - we all step on to the blog page with some trepidation - but its fun being part of an ongoing chat about writing.