A Bit About Me

My photo
Along with my daily duties as founder and head writer of HumorMeOnline.com, in 2003, I took the Grand Prize in the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest (also known as the "It Was a Dark and Stormy Night" competition). I've also been a contributor to "The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" and the web's "The Late Show with David Letterman". I also occupy my time writing three blogs, "Blogged Down at the Moment", "Brit Word of the Day" and "Production Numbers"...and my off-time is spent contemplating in an "on again/off again" fashion...my feable attempts at writing any one of a dozen books. I would love to write professionally one day...and by that I mean "actually get a paycheck".

10 August 2011

My Self-imposed Exile aka "Did anyone miss me even a little bit?"

"All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players..."

Shakespeare wrote that line ages ago and it has been ages ago since I've written a blog.

I first figured I'd take a little break...you know, the collective juices in the mind of a wannbe writer pooling up in that place real writers know all too well about...and then that water just sat and stagnated...waiting for enough time to pass to dry it all up.

Instead of the writer of my destiny...I became one of the players...a has-been drama queen to be precise.

I lulled about the house sitting down each time to write a blog and then harkening back on the words of a couple of my friends and my two kids (my poor kids who have to read it no matter what) who mentioned they "didn't like" or "didn't think it was funny" or thought "it's too long...so I stopped after the first couple paragraphs" -- and then I backed away from the keyboard and had a private pity party with me being the guest of honour. I probably even toasted my self-imposed obscurity once or twice...or 30 or so times. With glass raised in ceremonial fashion, I'd utter some rot like, "Je reviens...something something French-sounding blah blah..." for impact. I was, after all, drinking wine or French-made "Grey Goose" vodka -- I had to keep the drama up.

And I took those critical comments like...well, like anyone would take any critic who makes or breaks a play, film, or restaurant. And then, like a chef in that panned restaurant...I put everything on the back burner and let it stew a while.

Oh, I'd get spurts of ideas and feelings -- "things to write" simmering inside of me...but, again, I'd push it to the back burner and the critics' words would come back out to haunt me..."I didn't like this one so much...".

I found out in the past month or so that I am my worst critic.

Instead of listening to the other people who said they enjoyed it...and people I would run into around town who would say "Hey, I always read your blog at the Montgomery Advertiser and I really like it" (they are the people I always have to quiz - and sure enough, I'll be damned, they DO read it)...I listened to the harshest voice I could: My own.

I "boo-hoo'd" around the house day and night...I'd start to write and then semi-storm off in a huff saying things like "Oh, who cares?" or "Why even bother?" under my breath. I figured I'd be like that aging movie star from the "golden era" who waits for the great come-back script...who waits for the calls from Hollywood to come in...who waits...and then fades away like the heroine in that final frame of the last flickering film she starred in.

I'd wait...I'd wait until people started asking why I'm not writing anymore.

I waited a while.

Those "calls" just weren't coming in...oh, one or two did...but not the maddening frenzy I was hoping for...so, I waited some more.

Then, I did what anyone would do given enough time and gaining enough courage: I asked those friends if I really was that horrible a writer. One said he was "just busting my chops" and the other stated he never said I wrote horribly...and why would I say I welcome "all comments" at my blog if I only wanted to hear the good ones?

Touché. Point taken...point processed...back on point.

And that point being: I am now going to step out of the limelight of that stage...and get back behind the curtain, writing, where I belong.

(If you're wondering about all those "chef" references interspersed with the "stage" ones...tune in next blog to find out why. Yes...this is my first "Tune in Next Time" promo/teaser tag. Does it work? Tune in next time to find out.)


  1. glad to see you blogging again, as I for one missed it

    I think you (generalized) are probably oneselve's (is there really an "'" in that??) hardest and "best" critic.

    so I take it you are "ready for your close up"

    Good to see you back

  2. i think i'm tuned already...:)

  3. Thank you nanners and irawitA. I thought it'd be days before anyone said anything - proving my original "wait theory" correct making me feel even more depressed. But I got real live comments, so "wooohoooo!" for me.

    Living for the comments...that's what it's all about.

  4. Mariann, I have been wondering but thought I might be imposing if I asked "Where U B?" I've missed you on FB too. I think having you around makes the days a little brighter and the evenings a little more glamorous. Now don't make us wait!

  5. I like your writing a lot. So many people slow waaaaay down in the summer, so I didn't think anything was up when I didn't see you around. I'm glad you are getting back in the saddle. I know I don't comment often, but I do enjoy reading. :-)

  6. Linda - Thank you so much. Enjoy your Margaritas! :) Wished you lived around the block.

    Nicky - Thank you for your kind words. I read many blogs, too - and I know I should comment as well and most times I don't. I'm also bad at following blogs...I need to do that more often.

  7. Yay you're back! I missed reading your blog every week!

  8. I though I saw you on Facebook (fortune cookie thing) and said hello to you
    Nice to see you back

  9. Mariann and someone sittin' in a tree, k-i-s-s-i-n-g. At least that's the rumour I'm starting.

  10. Well, in fact I WAS wondering . . . glad you're back!

  11. I'm glad to see you've returned to writing. I believe you write wonderfully, and I am always happy to see something new here.

    "... they "didn't like" or "didn't think it was funny" or thought "it's too long...so I stopped after the first couple paragraphs" "

    Look, there are all sorts in this world, and that means there are all sorts of readers. Some like short pieces, some like long reads they can savor and enjoy for more than a few seconds. Some will find funny what others find disgusting, and vice-versa. If everybody liked the same sort of writing, we'd only need one writer to entertain us, right?

    Write what YOU find entertaining, and what YOU find funny, and what pleases YOU to read. There will be plenty - me, among them - who will also find it entertaining, funny, and pleasing. The others? Who gives a damn.

    (Yeah, some of them are your kids. I got that. Big deal. If they don't get the jokes, or don't have the patience for more than a few sentences, that's life. Do you like everything that comes out of THEIR mouths? Probably not everything.)

    I've been subject to the exact same complaints concerning my writing. It hurts a bit, but I learned a long time ago - via rejection as a musician, a voice-over artist, and other pursuits that don't allow for much objective criticism - that one man's treat is another man's dreadful bore. You can't possibly please anyone and nobody's perfect. As a matter of fact, the last guy who was got crucified, so don't let this sort of stuff get you down!

  12. Hah! There's a Freudian slip for you!

    "You can't possibly please ANYONE..."

    That was supposed to read "everyone", of course.

  13. Thank you, Sully. A compliment coming from a writer I respect (there's a few of them out there) means the world to me.

    You'd think with my depression I'd have to be an artist or writer...or a comedian. Seems it goes hand in hand with a lot of people who do that sort of thing. Altho it sure would be nice to be a happy writer.

    Again, thanks for the comment -- and for reading.

  14. I am new to this blog thing, so bare with me. I just wanted to introduce myself. Also my intention & purpose. I go about making disciples of men & women. Thats all i can do. Put the info out there for people to pick and choose what they will accept from Gods smorgasboard of idea's, guidance and direction.
    I read of how worried that you were about another blogger. You considered her cry to be one of physical help. But i saw it as one of a spiritual cry. That part of ourselves that can only be answered by God's Word. The only satisfaction we will ever really know. Sometimes it seems that people cry aloud on-line. Because that way they can be anonymous. You do realize that the woman had a phone, and could turn herself into the authorities, or a hospital. So do not take on guilts of others. What good is sending in police ? If a person wants to kill their-self. The truth is that there is nothing we can do.

    But promise if you think i would harm myself to NOT be alarmed! its just whining, like a baby does. So never think that i would do myself in. It will never happen. Such a thought is ridiculous, it passes as quik as another thought occurs. Like the wind, a fresh breath it gives. That's opportunity to know and Love God. Not the church one. But the real deal. Not traditions of religion. But in relationship with Christ walking & sharing, & inspiring.

    The best thing to do is to lead them to Christ. Everyday with every Word we say. That's what i attempt to do. And i would invite you to member w/ my blog for some of those promptings that are within the pathways of your journey. Please comment also. It helps me to stay inspired to be an inspiration. Its good to know that we are appreciated.
    your new fb friend, & sister in Christ, Hannah