I don’t blog much. I know I should. It would be good for my career, boost my profile, build an audience.
The problem is that blog posts are supposed to be timely. Unfortunately this goes against my compulsion to sculpt each and every sentence, like some precious literary bonsai (sometimes leaving only a stump) before subjecting it to the critical eye of my writing group, much less the general public.
The blog format may produce more spontaneous prose, but it also makes it easier for cringeworthy typos to sneak into print, and be helpfully pointed out by everyone on my Facebook feed from my mom to my first grade teacher.
For me, another obstacle is choosing a niche.
There’s always politics. How hard can it be to come up with an original take on the President’s awfulness? Infuse a fresh flavor of outrage into the day’s news cycle? There must be another animal, vegetable, mineral or junk food that has yet to be compared to Trump’s hair.
I could write about being fit and fabulous over 35, or being a single cat lady over 35 (the two don’t have to be mutually exclusive). I could be the Carrie Bradshaw of Franklin County, Mass., strutting the streets of Turners Falls—population 4,470—in Manolo Blahnik hiking boots.
I have lots of great stories from my job in human services, stories of grit and hope, resilience and despair, but….confidentiality.
Travel is the most obvious niche. I already have some experience in this area. Who wouldn’t click on the headline “Ten Best Unspoiled Beaches in North Korea,” or “Five Massachusetts Towns that Actually Voted for Trump.”
Maybe all this just goes to show that I need to blog, if not for my writing career, for myself. I need to resist my own inner Trump, that nasal voice in my head that insists that everything I have to say is fake news.
Read at your own risk.