About Four Hundred
It’s been almost two years now since I started this blog. Like the label at the top says—four hundred. Not every post has been poignant or soaked with profundity. It doesn’t work that way, but hopefully I’ve done a good job.
I get the occasional sideways look and raised eyebrow as someone asks me how many readers I’m getting. The perfunctory questions: What’s your traffic? How’s it helping with book sales? Are you an insane person, drooling onto your shirt from an ill-lit basement, writing to break up the monotony of collecting stamps and baseball cards?
Salient queries. I’ll disabuse a few notions right off. I haven’t started the drooling phase of life yet and I’ve never been much of a collector of anything but books.
So there’s that.
Well then, what’s the deal with this stream of thoughts?
Someone years ago said that to be creative, you have to create. It’s one of those ridiculously obvious things that sometimes gets mired in the weeds of life.
So I decided to write books. An impractical endeavor, but it can be highly rewarding. Whether I make 100 dollars or a million, the goal is to keep it rewarding.
That’s the main reason for the blog. Everyone needs a process, but writing novels is an arduous process; it can feel downright glacial in its progress. To combat this static feeling, I try to do a fresh blog post everyday or every other day. Serves two purposes: I practice typing things from my brain, and it helps me feel like I started and finished something.
The blog is just a methodology. Creative endeavors like albums and novels take time, and it’s not easy to remain level-headed through the tumult. Doing the dishes everyday, working out—hell, it doesn’t matter—try gardening. Something that you can point to and say I started and finished today. Enforcing a little discipline in one’s life can end up feeling more like freedom than enforcement after you get in the swing.
I make no recommendations for how to do it. But I was told a long time ago by my dad to have short-term things that I can accomplish and long-term goals that I might accomplish. The advice is sound as a pound. It doesn’t mean you won’t occasionally go insane trying to make some plot device line up with your story. It doesn’t mean you won’t feel creatively bankrupt from time to time and wonder why you can’t be like everybody else.
Sanity is great, but just a little insanity is like an inoculation. A little injection won’t give you the full-blown disease—it’ll actually make you tough as nails. Pitfalls and loneliness are part of venturing up the mountain. I saw that movie Everest the other day on the tube. Perfect example of a little insanity. Pretty sure those dudes were climbing so they could be normal when they got back home. And talk about pitfalls. Literally. Talk about loneliness. Whenever you feel like you’re sacrificing social interaction to work on some gnarly section of your piece, picture freezing your knickers off in a white-out where you’re so blind you don’t even have your hand for a friend.
Anyway, that’s why I do the blog. Talk about a great peak and dénouement. Like I said, not always soaked with profundity. Keep rocking. I’ll do the same. See you after.