Did You Know I Write For You?

Yesterday, the panic settled in – that WordPressurey feeling that’s become all too familiar: Oh god I’m so behind on reading blogs, people are going to think I don’t care about them, and why can’t I find my dashboard, and why is my comments widget missing, and WHAT AM I GOING TO WRITE ABOUT NEXT?

And that’s when I read one of my favorite blogs, She’s A Maineiac. Suddenly all was right in the world. Darla had posed a series of hilarious and compelling questions to bloggers.

I’d found my next blog post. Warning: We’re about to go deep.

Thanks, DP!

~*~*~*~*~*~

Why in the hell do you blog?

I believe in taking baby steps, to JUST KEEP GOING, in order to survive and thrive creatively, and blogging has been the perfect medium for that approach. It’s manageable, yet lets me push myself.

Like this happened.

On the set of the “My Parents Are Crazier Than Yours” pilot webisode shoot, Oct 2012.

He loves peppers and I love...blogging.

Have you heard? He loves peppers.

How did you discover blogging? What was your initial impression? 

Husband #1, Peppermeister, has a blog and urged me to start my own. My degree is in Creative Writing, but I’d let writing slip for many years.

My first impression was, “Um, hello? Anyone out there? Can you please tell me what HTML is?”

Were you shy and withdrawn as a child or gregarious?

A little of both. Still am. In social situations, if I’m with someone shy, I’ll step up to the plate and carry the conversation; if I’m surrounded by extroverts, I’ll take a back seat. I cater to others to distract myself from my own insecurities; it’s exhausting, actually.

How close is your ‘blogging’ persona to the real you? 

I think Rache (Rachel's Table) was really disappointed.

With Rache (Rachel’s Table) in Nov 2012. What was that about shyness?

Oh gawd. I get so nervous when I meet other bloggers in person; I worry they’ll be disappointed with the gal behind the ‘stache glasses. Nevertheless, this blog helped me find my voice, and sometimes I think it’s the most genuine representation of me.

How has blogging changed you or your life?

It’s given me creative momentum, which is huge, but what’s life-changing? The connections I’ve made with fellow bloggers. They inspire me every day – this post is a perfect example.

Do you consider yourself to be a ‘writer’? 

It took a long, long time; I’ve been writing since I was a kid. One day in my mid-20s, it just clicked: I write, therefore I am a writer.

Do you prefer to write, then edit, edit, edit or just throw up on a page and be done with it?

I’ve never written a post without tweaking it at least 10 times. Usually more. Some of it has to do with the visual component – that’s very important to me. I’m still wondering about the text format I chose for these questions!

How confident are you after you hit that dreaded ‘publish’ button? 

I’ve gotten better at letting it go, in part because I can count on such a supportive blogging community. But when I share something personal, or spend another 20 hours making a video, believe me – I’m holding my breath!

Jules-Reated-PG13Have you ever regretted something you’ve written?

I really regret wearing that red shirt in my ‘200th post’ video blog – does that count?

Have you ever been 100% satisfied with something you’ve written?

Yes. Once:

Slide3

The Byronic Man and me. It was his birthday. It was special.

Do you view your writing as good, bad, so-so, or ‘eh, you really don’t care’? Do you ever look back at a post and cringe?

I think my writing has improved VASTLY since I started this blog, but there’s plenty of room for improvement, and there always will be. And YES, some of my old posts make me cringe (note how I’m not linking back to any here)!

When you write, do you have a certain audience in mind, or do you just go with your gut and let the words spew forth without a care who would like it or not? In other words, do you censor yourself at all?

Darla and I actually talked about this last week during one of our marathon phone chats. We agreed blogging [for us] has evolved to where we write with a specific audience in mind – regular readers that we like to tease or make laugh.

I know everyone says write for yourself, but I did that for years, and let me tell you: It’s way, way more fun to write for your friends – yeah, I mean you!

~*~*~*~*~*~

Aren’t these questions fantastic? If you haven’t already, please go check out the source post on She’s A Maineiac – I encourage you to answer them, too!

~*~*~*~*~*~

And the random winner of the 2nd blogoversary ‘stache glasses is… Susie Lindau! She was the 41st commenter (not counting my comment replies)!

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47 responses to “Did You Know I Write For You?

  1. I missed Darla’s post so I’m so glad you highlighted it here. And may I please use “wordpressury” in the future?

  2. I’m so there. I get behind in reading all the blogs I love… and then I am terrified that everyone will hate me. And although I am an introvert, in my writing life- I lOVE an audience. I write to make someone laugh.

    • I find it so hard to believe you’re an introvert, Nancy! But I think that’s exactly what blogging does – it lets the introverts become extroverts.

      And if your goal is to write to make people laugh, I got news for ya. SUCCESS.

  3. love darla and her questions. love you too. i often feel pressure to network, to write something that people will love, to constantly read and support other bloggers and to feel like i’m failing at them all.

    • Get outta here! You’re nuts. You’re so funny and one of the most supportive bloggers out there. I’m saying this without my ‘stache glasses on, which means you can take me seriously.

      And I’m only a little drunk.

  4. Great responses. I’m kicking myself for taking the time to answer her questions via comment reply and not make it a separate post.

    That picture of you and Byronic Man is WONDERFUL. Perfect start to my day, thank you!

    • Speaking of perfect pictures – I am loving your gravatar, Carly!

      I’m not entirely sure what more I can do with that B Man / toothpaste pic, but I’m fairly confident it’s not seen the height of its glory.

      I may have just said that last sentence to use “it’s” and “its” in the same sentence. It’s Friday night, and that was the highlight of my day. Wow.

  5. Great, great post! I see myself in many of your answers.

    • Thank you! It’s so funny how self-conscious you can feel ‘publishing’ these answers, only to look back and realize, “Geesh. That’s nothing! Wait’ll they see what I do with bacon when no one’s looking.”

      (Hint: I put it on grilled cheese. Sorry. Anticlimactic.)

  6. Woohoo! I am official now. Can’t wait to rock the glasses. Thanks so much Jules!
    Love your piece! I can relate to your answers. Who knew that the Peppermeister dipped his toe in first. :)
    I think Darla may have started something big!
    Thanks again!

  7. Someday we’re going to meet face to face. And on that day, you will be the one who’s disappointed when I’m not actually wearing a red dress and cheap, blonde wig.

    Probably not, anyway.

  8. I would say one of the highlights of my blogging experience has been meeting you! You’re just the bee’s knees.

  9. Darla’s post was awesome, and so is this. :D I think it was a great idea to make it into another post. That thought crossed my mind too, til I remembered that I’m lazy and I suck at answering questions. :oops:

  10. Great post! I’m going to have to do those questions as well, although a lot of my answers already match yours. Thanks for sharing!

    PS- I also get a little overwhelmed by not reading as much as I should. That stress will reach its pinnacle in April, when I do the A to Z challenge, because I never read as many as I should or want to. Not enough hours in the day. *sigh*

    • If you do, please let me know – I’d LOVE to read them! And that’s very flattering that many of your answers would match mine!

      A to Z challenge…that does sound daunting. I’m Googling it now…

  11. And thank you for brightening my day, time and time again :-) x

    • It was the picture of The Byronic Man in a dress, wasn’t it? I should make that my screensaver / wallpaper / hang it over my bed. (This is a cover-up to hide the fact that I ironed it on a pillowcase and sleep on that image every night.)

  12. Be honest, I think this was just another way to incorporate that lovely woman in red in another post. (It is the best picture EVER.)

    I find it hard to believe you get nervous when meeting bloggers. But then, I was super nervous meeting Charles. Maybe it’s more excitement? Nope, on second thought, it was all nerves for me. People view you as a certain way on your blog, so it’s that fear of not living up to how people perceive you (maybe? I don’t know…)
    No links to old posts that made you cringe? For me, it would be the entire first year of blogging. And most of the second.

    Thanks so much for answering these in-depth questions, JD! I’m giving people the option to make a separate post like you did because it’s just too much of a pain in the ass to copy and paste the million questions I asked.

    • Although you inspired this post, Darla, let’s not forget that Jules said “Did you know I write for YOU?”, and she was looking straight at me. In fact, I think her next vlog should be her singing “Wind Beneath My Wings”.

      Did you ever know that you’re my hero, Peggles, you’re ev-er-y-thing I wish I could be-e-e-e-! Fly-y-y-y-y, high-igh-igh, so high you won’t come down…

    • DP, it was like you put the ball on the tee, and handed me a bat. While I did not hit anything out of the park with my answers, B Man sure did. I think the answers to all of life’s probing questions are somewhere between that blonde wig and that red dress.

      You should NEVER be nervous meeting anyone; you are the most down-to-earth, fun, funny, easy-to-talk-to person around. Hell, you have the ear ache(s) to prove it!

      Thank YOU.

  13. I don’t think you need to worry, Jules; blogging is in your blood now!
    The world is yours, cutie!

    • Thank you! It still unnerves me that I’ve made some of my closest friends through blogging – I never thought this was going to be about anything but “THE WRITING.”

      *Cue “Full House” music*

  14. I love your answer to the shy vs. gregarious question. That’s exactly how I would describe myself. And yes, it IS exhausting!

    Oh, and meeting you in person has been the highlight of my blogging career. You are even better in person, if that’s possible. One might even describe you as effervescent.

    Now I’m off to watch a PG-13 rated vlog.

    • Right?! It’s not that I cater to people by being a pushover (although sometimes I am), it’s that I cater to people’s PERSONALITIES. I mold myself around whatever the OTHER person is, to make a situation more comfortable. But the irony is: I try SO HARD to make every situation easy and comfortable because *I* don’t want to be uncomfortable, yet it winds up being at the expense of my own comfort! Because I’m exhausted! I often avoid social situations just because of how taxing this is!

      I can’t believe you watched that vlog. I’m sorry.

      Rache. You know how I feel about you. I guess I don’t even mind that you saw that vlog. Because I feel comfortable around you. <—Yeah. Let THAT sink in.

  15. I had a dream last night that I bought your book while browsing at a bookstore. I came to it, recognized your name, and immediately bought it. Of course, this was the same dream that featured Katherine Heigl as Izzy from Grey’s Anatomy as my doctor. She informed me that I had stage 4 melanoma on my foot… er, uh, where did THAT come from!?! Anyway, I think you are bound for great things, so keep writing!

  16. Thanks to Darla for starting the introspection, although she missed a great opportunity to have a blog series where somebody else does all the work. Fail!

    Thanks for this window into your soul, Jules, and for showing the birthday picture again. It’s magical. Did I tell you I’ve had wallpaper custom-made from that picture of you as toothpaste? And I’m redoing my whole house in it? Yeah.

  17. Great post Jules! It always amazes me how much we bloggers have in common–why we blog, what we blog about, and what we’ve gained from it. (Besides 10 pounds from sitting at a computer editing our words several hours a day.)

  18. When I open my WordPress reader, I hear Alan Rickman’s voice saying, “Well, I see you’ve come back. Nice of you to drop by.” Damned sarcastic Reader. Lately my Dashboard has been picking up a little attitude as well. I fantasize about a blogger’s lounge where we could all just hang out and have cocktails and conversation without actually consuming any time in the real world, but all that fantasizing sort of keeps me from getting anything else done, so I guess that might be part of my problem. Lovely post, honest and funny!

  19. OK, so I’ve been away for a bit and this was the perfect blog to come back to…and now off to visit another blogger I’ve missed; Darla!

  20. I feel the world needs more empathy. It’s the antithesis of and antidote for shame, the silent epidemic underlying the difficulty in the creation of meaningful sustaining connections between human beings despite the neurobiological desire to seek honest and authentic connections. From empathy breeds tolerance, compassion, forgiveness, Grace- loving thy neighbor as thyself. We’re wired empathically and come fully equipped at birth, but somehow in growing up we close off this faculty, often when most needed.

    I also feel the embodiment of our values, morals and beliefs is needed… We are living examples and our interactions have a ripple like effect, paying it forward or random acts of kindness spread like wildfire from one just taking the moment to do something nice, to think with the heart not the preoccupied mind. Great post, really got me musing!

  21. You worry about reading, that others will think you are terrible. I worry about commenting where there is a base so I read, like and then don’t comment. Is that rude?

    I thought your answers were wonderful. Darla kicked off a great post.

  22. Oh God I hear ya little Chipmunk! I haven’t stopped by for an age, I’m sorry, it didn’t mean I wasn’t thinking of you! I think the red top is fine; I wore one that came out looking like the top of an orange jumpsuit on my first student ID card, I was also wearing a particularly careworn and pained expression due to a back problem and lots of anti inflammatory and pain killers. As my daughter noted, I looked like someone on death row, for three years. Imagine my joy at being offered the opportunity to renew it for Honours with a ‘yes please I will have a new photo taken’. I was so excited I didn’t check my lose fitting sweater that had slipped off one shoulder. Acres of exposed bra strap and giddy looking floozy as a result. Sigh. My online persona is much more preferable and thankfully easier to edit than my real life Bridget Jones one!

  23. “In social situations, if I’m with someone shy, I’ll step up to the plate and carry the conversation; if I’m surrounded by extroverts, I’ll take a back seat.”—I’m exactly the same.

  24. Richard L Wiseman

    I for one appreciate the time you take out from tending to chipmunks to let me know what the hell is going on out there. Don’t worry about the red top situation. I’m a middle aged married male so I won’t notice what you’re wearing.

  25. Pingback: When Form Meets Function and Mustaches Win | Susie Lindau's Wild Ride

  26. Loved the post!

    I agree, I’ve met a few bloggers and I was VEeeeeRY nervous.

    I thought, OMG, I wonder if they see me as a complete asshole phoney!

    ….But every time, it was a good experience.

    Xx

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