The Blogging Rule

The Blogging Rule

 

That’s not what you meant to say

Nor the message you wanted to convey

And those ramblings in your head

Were not the things needing to be said

It’s what you wrote but not what you thunk

That’s what you get for blogging drunk

 

Tim Keen

5/22/16

 

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Your Write Place

Your Write Place

 

My favorite place to write has changed a lot over the years mostly to do my age, financial situation, and the amount of garbage I have rumbling through my mind at any given time. When I first started writing at the tender age of seven, I was so captivated by my newfound gift that anywhere there was a notebook, a pen or pencil and a place to sit down was my favorite place. Back then, without the weight of the world to drag my thoughts down, I could block out everything and the words fell from my mind to the paper like magic.

That remained steady almost all the way through high school. Anywhere I could be sit, I could push away distractions and the words would fall. Then, somehow, the world got busy. I got married. I became a father. I started working not to buy toys, but to make ends meet, to support a family. With all that came something I had never experienced before…distractions that I couldn’t easily make go away. Suddenly, for the first time ever, I needed a place to write.

Those places have varied over the years, of course. In the days of pen and paper or typewriter, it was a spare room, usually one with a door where I could lock everything out for just a little while and coax life out of and into the characters I created. Mostly it was a spare bedroom but once, when the rooms were full, it was our kitchen with the sliding door closed and the manual typewriter on board supported by two trashcans. A towel under the manual kept the noise to a minimum.

Once the personal computer came into being, my writing place became limited to wherever the computer was setup which was often times in the same room as the television. Of course with the PC came the internet and the ability to download music. My personal favorite music to block out the surrounding world is instrumental based, mood type music. The headphones and the music take the world away and I fall into that gray area between my ears where all things are possible.

Eventually the mecca arrived for all writers, myself included. The laptop. This was the most convenient, most powerful thing every invented for the writer. Once again, just like in the days of pen, pencil, and paper, I could go anywhere I needed to go to write. Since the headphones and mood music of above applied, it meant that anywhere I could find a place to sit was a writing place as long as there was an outlet or the life in my battery. I could write in the living room while my wife watched television. Or I could write in the back of the car while we traveled. One of my favorite places to write is on an airplane or in the airport waiting for that plane to arrive.

With all that being said, with all the evolution of my writing places over the years, I do have a preferred place to write when I am at home. I have a covered deck with a fireplace. Wind chimes out on the porch seem to always be singing on the wind and the view from this place, for me, is fantastic. It eases my mind and the words flow.

What is your write place?

 

Fire Place

Tim’s Write Place

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I’m Blogging Rich

I’m Blogging Rich

 

I started blogging six years ago. It was no coincidence that the start of my blog and the self-publishing of After Hours lined up. I started investigating what I needed to do to become a self-publishing guru and the first thing I learned was that I must have a web presence.

Great! I thought. Now there’s a second thing I don’t know anything about. First, self-publishing and, second, blogging. What the hell. Tear the lid off the pickle jar and dive in. I’ll learn to love pickle juice or drown.

I could go into all of the details of the blogging and self-publishing but nearly all of you reading this would go blah, blah, blah. You would want to read about something you don’t know about. So I will skip it. I will get to intent and result.

From the outset, my intent was clear. I was going to self-publish, go into blogging world, achieve a vast following and become super rich. I am happy to say I have done just that only not quite in the way I might have expected.

Don’t get me wrong. I am still writing towards the goal of monetary compensation. It is important to me, but I don’t think it any longer defines what my definition of rich is when it comes to my writing. In my blogging, I had an unexpected positive in getting to meet and talk to people from all over the world. My blogging on any given day gets views from the UK, Ecuador, and the Czech Republic. I live in Franklin, Ky. Please look that up and see how remote the chances are ever of getting to talk to any of those people without the power of the internet. How awesome is that?

There’s another blessing in all of this as well and before I say this, I want to be clear I am not dogging that big social media network or anyone who is on it. It is just not for me. I am connecting through this forum with creative people who share creative ideas. I never knew how powerful photography or paintings or any of that could be until I started doing this thing I am doing. I was not a huge fan of poetry, but probably half of posts have been poems that I have written, poems that were inspired from something I read while blogging. Before I started blogging, that sounded ludicrous to me. Me? Poems? No way.

All that being said, I have sold copies of my book. It is on Amazon. Please (shameless plug – I would come wash your car if I could to get you to take a look) go to my About page and give me a chance. I will continue to strive for book sales as any author/writer/poet should, but while my blogging experience has not made me rich in the monetary sense just yet, it has given me a connection to the world that I did not expect.

I would call that a fringe benefit of being in the blogging world.

I hope you have enjoyed my take on being Blogging Rich

 

Thanks,

Tim

 

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The Blogger’s High

The Blogger’s High

         I usually plan my blogs out a little better than this, but this one is completely on the fly and with good reason. I had the day off today, so I started my morning with blog action like I do so many times with the goal in mind to blog for a bit and then move on to something else. Usually it goes like this:

       Blog.

      Write.

      Something else.

      Well, I have successfully completed the first two, but the energy I got back from all you guys and gals around the world has put me into something of a writer’s/blogger’s high. I keep throwing comments out there and you keep coming to my site. I don’t often get to or intend to spend the entire day blogging, but that is what I have done and it has been exhilarating.

      Thanks to every single one of you who participated. I can only hope that you have been through something similar.

Please visit again.

Tim

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Happy Mother’s Day

Happy Mother’s Day

 

In 1914, Woodrow Wilson signed a measure that proclaimed the second Sunday in May to be Mother’s Day. This was the culmination of an aggressive, persistent letter writing campaign by Anna Jarvis who argued, among other things, that the national holidays of the times were too male oriented, that women were not represented fairly. When Wilson signed the measure, her goal to see the holiday on the calendar was realized.

Anna Jarvis had envisioned the holiday as a private day between mothers and their families or a day spent in church service. However, she quickly became disillusioned as businesses promoted the holiday through cards and flowers, commercializing this sacred day. Towards the end of her life, she urged people to stop buying cards and flowers in honor of this day. Ironically, she was so disgusted by the whole thing that by the end of her life in 1948, she had started another campaign. She wanted the holiday removed from the calendar.

Of course, she did not succeed, so I must say Happy Mother’s Day to all.

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Slipping Away

Slipping Away

 

 

On March 1, 1991, I checked into a hotel room with my new wife. Yes, it was our Honeymoon. Our first night together as man and wife. It’s funny, I don’t even remember how we paid for things back then. I didn’t have a credit card. Debit cards were in their infancy. I may have written a check, which seems absurd now, but I really don’t remember. What I do remember is what the young lady behind the desk ask me.

“Are you a member of any discount groups like AARP?”

That stands for American Association of Retired Persons. It was for old people. I looked to see if there was a laugh hiding behind the question. There wasn’t. She was dead serious.

I looked at my new wife and just shook my head. Poor girl, I guess I thought. I know she’s just asking a question on a form that she had to, but, hell, look at us. I am twenty-five years old. Do I look like I need to be a member of AARP? I thought it was funny.

Time creeps, though. Creeps like the lava of a slowly erupting volcano, starting out in the distance, just biding its time, so slowly at first you dare ignore it thinking there’s no way it can get me. Of course, it’s gotten everyone else over the course of recorded and unrecorded history, but I am different. I am not going to be gotten.

But time doesn’t care what I think. It moves forward. It creeps. Just like the lava, it eventually consumes everything in its path, burning it up until it’s gone. It doesn’t care that I work out, run, read, go to church. It doesn’t care that I have learned to conserve energy and get more work done that even when I was a younger man. It cares about none of those things.

The lava of time just keeps on creeping, steady and true, oozing forward, taking y life one second at a time. By the time I first felt the heat of the lava time, I know it is too late. There is nowhere to run. There never was. It will get me eventually.

My lava caught up with me just last week. I came in from work one afternoon and there it was, sitting on the counter, laughing its ass off at me.

A promotional envelope from AARP.

That’s not fair.

I am still twenty-five.

What in the hell just happened?

I thought of that little girl behind the desk of the hotel I had checked into all those years ago, how funny it was when she asked me if I was a member of AARP. What a laugh my wife and I had shared over that one.

Only I wasn’t laughing so much.

 

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So You Wrote a Story

So You Wrote a Story

 

Okay. Now it’s done. After the hours, weeks, or months of hard work and mental sweat depending on the length of your story, it is finally complete. You have a beer, a cigarette or do whatever it is you do to commemorate your great accomplishment, then you go about the business of getting your great accomplishment out for all the world to see.

Now what?

This is where I, the artist who is still waiting to be discovered, am no different from the artists of the world who have been discovered and now their very livelihood depends upon acceptance of their great accomplishment.

We submit and we wait.

We wait see how your great accomplishment will be accepted.

That’s when the whole thing gets dicey, as they say. Because what is a great accomplishment in your mind and what is great a great accomplishment in the mind of others is a subjective thing, so very subjective as to be undefinable.

Is a great accomplishment acceptance? If so, at what level? How many times have you heard a movie, song, or novel was released to great critical acclaim only to be kicked to the side by the viewing public? The paying public! How many times have you heard the same works be soundly rejected by the critics only to be wildly accepted by the same paying public? Or is it a great accomplishment merely because you deem it to be so?

What is more important? I guess is depends on what you the artist are seeking, but the larger point is still that artistic success is not necessarily measurable unless you define the expectations.

Is it great because it is what you wanted it to be?

It is great because you expected great critical acclaim?

It is great because you expected great commercial success?

In the end, only you can decide if the work you do is satisfactory to you. If it is for any of the reasons detailed above, then move on the next project.

If it is not for any of the reasons detailed above, then either find ways to get in line with your expectations or redefine them.

What is your definition of a successful work?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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