Wednesday, November 7, 2012

(Not) Professional Me

It's only 11 am and today has already been weird. I woke up super early and have been paying the price all morning. Bah. And I've been so busy working on the book and exercising lately that I haven't even had time to catch up on blogs or really do much of anything online other than respond to e-mails.

So this morning I took a timely little break. Instead of plugging away at all the must-do's I vegged on the couch, watched a show, ate some toast, and then finally got up and at least came downstairs to check my e-mail and read some blogs I've been missing. All of this has been nice. Except... except looking at all of my favorite blogs has made me think about my own.

If there's one thing we hear over and over again in the blogging world it is this: reading other people's blogs is fun, but it makes us all feel like we're not good enough even though all those other people are real people too. And in many ways I feel so over this subject. I'm actually really tired of reading about it. Yes, I know your living room looks spotless, but that all of your junk is really just sitting on your kitchen table now instead. I get it. And I do that too. It's not a mean trick, it just is what it is.

But it's not the pretty pictures that are making me feel insecure. It's the way so many others seem to be able to compartmentalize their lives. I guess in many ways, I do compartmentalize my life, but on my blog, I really don't. And it's not because I can't, I guess, but because I really don't have any desire to. Yes, I want to go places with my talents and, yes, I want to be a respected member of the creative community, but I don't really have any great need for people to think that I'm perfect. I'm not. And I know that there's a lot more genuine good that comes from being real--in the good and the bad--than just being "professional" and always putting on a good face and storing your thoughts and worries and dreams away in the closet where no one can see them but you.

But, on the other hand, I know that if a publisher or an agent or anybody relevant to my "professional" life is looking into me and what I write and what my style is and what projects I've written and shared in the past, they are of course going to look here. And it seems silly and juvenile to have posts like this one up on my "professional" blog.

It's something I'm not sure about.

In fact, it's something I've been not sure about since I started writing tutorials and things here. Do I want this to be a place for me to be me? Or do I want it to be a place for me to be professional? These are questions I hate because I don't know the answers.

Anyway, sorry for the downer post. It's just been on my mind lately. Again. So there.

P.S. Read this post. Jean said it better.


Amanda said...

I don't know if this is going to make sense or help you in any way, but I'll try anyway.

Off the top of my head I can think of 5 blogs that I follow that the author has a book published. I own 2 of those books. I bought those 2 and only those 2 because their blog is mostly personal with a touch of professional. Because their blogs are more personal, I feel like I know them, like we could be real life friends. And I like to support my friends. So when their book came out, I jumped on the chance to show them that I think they are awesome. I didn't feel the same way about the professional blogs. I still follow them, and find them helpful & interesting. But I didn't run out and buy their book.

I don't have any ties to the publishing world and don't know what it takes to get a book published. I'm sure your concerns are very real. I just wanted to share my 2 cents about what makes me spend my hard earned money! :)

*I love your blog and will totally buy your book!!!!*

Polly @ Pieces by Polly said...

Ha! And I usually think I should do more personal posts like you do, but I'm just not good enough with words to think of a way to put it...and it's so much easier to just slap a crafty project up. I think your blog content is awesome and it makes you likely to have more faithful readers.

kendra @ little almanac said...

"Do I want this to be a place for me to be me? Or do I want it to be a place for me to be professional?"

I totally get this. I go through the same thoughts, especially when it comes to sponsorships. Do I really want to crowd my blog with posts from others when I started this space just for me? But I also don't mind making an easy buck or two from sponsors, either. Tough call!

Kathy Haynie said...

Who are you going to be if you're not going to be YOU? The personal posts - as Polly mentions above - are the work of a talented and honest writer. Publishers like slick books, but they really like WRITERS. Keep writing. You are awesome, and so is your blog.

Allynara said...

On the publishing thing, I can't give you any advise, since I haven't written a book that I want to publish. But what I do know is this:

I really love to read your blog because, yes there are tutorials and yes there are useful tips and tricks to be found, but I mostly follow your blog because when you stuggle with something, you write about it. Not just some sentences, but a real story about your real life. I think it's envigorating to read and it's something the other blogs blogs I follow don't have. I find that I like the professional blogs less than I do your blog or the blogs that incorporate the professional with the personal.

So my advice? Keep doing what you're doing, because you're doing a great job!

Kelly Simonsen said...

I love your blog just the way it is. It's one of my favorites! You are real. And I love that. Please don't change. :o)