Yes, I’ve gone almost two weeks without a blog post. Yes, I ought to be on someone’s list (Santa’s naughty list, some writing guru’s shit list, whatever). I had my reasons, none of which are probably acceptable to anyone who’s serious about blogging:
5) I was burned out from NaBloPoMo. It wasn’t for any exhaustion of my writing muscles that I clammed up for two weeks. I write pretty easily. For some reason, I just couldn’t post anything, even an apology for being absent. Writing instructors and writers on writing often talk about the “inner editor.” I have an inner heckler, and she was bellowing, “Aw, shut the hell up already!” It was so easy to comply.
4) I fell through the trapdoor called the Christmas season. I actually have less things I have to do related to Christmas than in most years past; but I still have plenty of things I love to do, and I did them. Holiday outings with the Hooligans. The annual day-long venture with lunch and shopping to some farther-than-usual destination with my mother. Watching all the “musts” on my holiday viewing list. Quaint village Christmas walks twinkling with lights and glowing with luminaria. Rides around the neighborhood to look at light displays. I live for this crap, every holly-bedecked moment, and it’s here for such a short time. Blogging? Pfffttt…
3) I used up all my creative energy making things. I have a form of illness (possibly Martha Stewart-itis) that drives me to make as much as possible for Christmas. I don’t mean to sell. I make several gifts. I send handmade Christmas cards. I tuck little hand-crafted trinkets into some of those cards. I’m still trying to get around to making gift bags in a green effort to swerve away from all that wrapping paper consumption. I’m going to make my own version of bourbon balls (like a nut-studded shot wrapped in chocolate) later this week, and I’ll help make cookies when the Hooligans come to Grandma’s. It’s what I do, this making stuff with my hands. I was doing it before I started writing (and I consider the official birth of my writing aspirations to be the day I started a journal in November, 1966, when I was 12 years old).
2) I have an Etsy shop. It’s here. No, it doesn’t take all my time, but there’s more involved than you might think. I don’t count the products themselves; I tend to make those while I’m watching TV. In fact, I’m incapable of simply sitting and watching television, I have to be doing something else. The time drain comes from taking multiple photos of each piece and processing the shots into images that aren’t too detrimental (I’m not a photographer); writing up listings to complement the iffy photos; then posting the listings and updating my own records with the info. There are incidental things, like monitoring stats and responding with thanks when one of my items is included in someone’s treasury list, or looking up postage rates for Australia or Germany so I can convo a potential customer that yes, I CAN ship that bracelet to her country. And if I’m lucky enough to actually sell something, I drop everything to pack it carefully and get the purchase shipped. All of this is especially critical in December. So, you see, if I can spend this much time and wordage just talking about being an Etsy seller, the whole Etsy-distracted-me-from-blogging thing becomes a lot clearer.
And the #1 reason I abandoned my blog posts:
1) I could. I take deadlines very seriously, and under different circumstances I would have let some of the holiday stuff slide in order to concentrate or writing, editing, or even blogging. I sure as hell did it in November for NaBloPoMo (and that left me catching up on the other stuff in December). However, none of my deadlines are looming before year’s end; and because of who I am and where I am at this precise moment in my career, I didn’t feel compelled to shoehorn blogging into everything else I wanted to do. Next year, I may feel differently (in fact, I’m hoping and planning it will be different). For now, eh…did anyone really miss me?
Writers on writing, including bloggers, preach constantly about the importance of writing regularly. With social networking, especially Twitter, I find my computer screen swarming with writing masters pointing fingers and pontificating what I should be doing. I know, I know. I should be writing. But as long as I feel pretty sure the world won’t end if I go silent on my blog once in awhile, I’m going to go hear my niece’s Girl Scout troupe sing carols at the Christmas in Loveland festivities rather than sit here and pour more words into the already bloated blogosphere.