Firstly I would like to say Thank You to everyone who has taken the time to stop by my infant blog. It is lovely out here in the light! I appreciate every hit, like, follow and comment so much. I have spent a fair amount of time looking around WordPress this weekend, getting used to how it all works and discovering such wonderful blogs and bloggers. I can hardly believe just how large this website is. In 2012 1 in 6 websites were powered by WordPress, 60 million in all, with around 100,000 being added every day! 330 million visitors a month who viewed an outstanding 3.4 billion page views and it has only grown since then! Incredible statistics. I feel like an ant among 60 million giants!
I am extremely excited about this new venture into writing. I have been having lucid dreams about blogging; placing a notepad and pencil on the nightstand has been my best move! I don’t want to forget the good ideas but I am really trying to forget some quite bizarre ones that got lodged in my mind. I dreamt of a short Zombie story where all the worlds dead have risen from their graves, sentient zombies who want a life back as well as snacking on the living. The world is in chaos but nowhere more so than America, only here are the zombies getting serious. There is an abundance of past presidents, senators, civil servants, so so many lawyers and more loyal soldiers than you can shake a stick at! They want to do things constitutionally! Long dead presidents sharing The White House, making flesh and brains a legal delicacy, moving their cattle stock on to reservations and beginning to farm them before we literally die out. Then I realised a few things..
1. I have no idea how the American government works so how could I write about it realistically! Modern studies was a long time ago. I may have a good few American internet buddies, who I incidentally was talking to before I fell asleep, which must be why my mind didn’t place the apocalypse at home!
2. It has probably been done before! There’s very little left unimagined and unwritten in this particular genre.
3. I haven’t written anything for 25 years. I do not have the comedic, satirical, truly horrific or even basic skills to carry off this kind of thing!
4. My head is bursting with meaningful thoughts and memories from my life that I have kept to myself for said 25 years, I’ve an obligation to myself to make them a priority. Any creative fiction short stories at the moment would be distracting.
5. My imagination has started to work again! Now that’s a surprise!
Unfortunately just how to go about accomplishing a blogged memoir feels beyond me. Handling all these memories feels out of my grasp. There are so many of them, what order do I write them in, how do I structure this long-term story? Do I go with a straight narrative from childhood to adulthood, do I jump around my timeline, should I talk about the significance to my adult self as I state the happenings from my past or do I leave it at the child’s perspective and talk about my adult life later on? So many options!
Then there’s trying to make sense out of memories, little glimpses, random snippets of places and faces I don’t recognise. Things that feel important to me that I just can’t place. Overheard conversations that don’t make sense, most likely things I was never meant to hear or see, three generations of women who loved to gossip and a child seen but not heard. If only our brains had a system of storing memories like a Facebook Timeline! Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we had brains like hard drives where could simply chose a date and bring up the memories related to that day. I have such a great number of memories, gently floating balloons of random information that I need to tie down, to tether into my timeline before some drift away for good.
I spent 3 hours on the phone to my Grandad with a long list of questions. We haven’t talked that much in such a long time. We haven’t talked that long about the past ever! I’ve always known he had been in a nasty accident but never asked any particulars, oh maybe I shouldn’t have asked about that, ghastly mental images! It was great to gain some context, perspective and have things, I’d had tangled up, straightened out for me. He was too reluctant to talk about some things, a very real worry of ending up with his head on a chopping block. I was able to tie in so many balloons anyway, a lot of information to process.
Until I have a plan, a reasonable idea of what I want to do and how I want to do it, I think it would be informative and hopefully interesting to present to you my cast of characters. A series of blogs introducing the people in my life from the past and present. I hope it will establish a familiarity with those individuals who are such important parts of my life and memories and along the way you will get to know more about myself and my family history.
(my daughter created the image of the floating balloons . I asked her to proof-read for me and she sent me back the image to go along with my blog. She’s a good egg!)
35 thoughts on “Putting my balloons in order.”
I am relatively new to WordPress, too! I can totally empathize with you. I just wanted to get my mind off of things from time to time so I decided to blog, but I did not know where to begin. I actually started the journey about 3-4 weeks ago, but I am still struggling to find my own voice in blogging. But it is still a good experience and awesome to see people with same interest on WordPress. To be able to share your experience with others and have others give you invaluable feedback is too good to read. You probably can imagine how elated I was when I first saw the star lit up on the right hand corner of the screen to indicate that someone has liked my blog. I didn’t even know what it was! To see stars, “+”, caption bubble, and a trophy lit up encouraged me to continue blogging.
I wish you the best of luck and look forward to reading your blog!
Hi, thank you for your comment. i feel a little overwhelmed by my little blog at times, i am not used to sharing my thought and feelings and it feels quite surreal. to have people read and respond is amazing isn’t it. your post named becoming more human really touched home with me. I will be keeping up with your blog and i have no doubt you will find your voice.
Same here! I usually like to keep my thoughts in my journal, so this is out of my comfort zone, but I am starting to like it! But as you mentioned, it is amazing to read people’s insights.
And thank you for your interest in my blog! It means a lot to me! I actually wrote one today, called “For the First Time!” and I would greatly appreciate it if you could check it out! I also look forward to reading yours too!
Best of wishes!
just a few simple suggestions- be yourself. Do not worry about the fact that somebody has already put together a whole bunch of words on topic that you want to write.
Make it personal – this is not just for others to read, this is for you to make a difference in your own world, and maybe help out or change somebody else’s perception while you are figuring things out yourself.
Do not ask anybody to edit or proof read as most of the time, they will want to add their own spin. People see the world through their own colored glass and always have an opinion. This is your blog, this is your take on it, this is something that comes from within you. Don’t allow somebody to mold this blog the way they want it. Mold it the way you want it even if it pisses off a lot of people.
And never forget – if you have something to say, there is always somebody out there who needs to hear it or is actually looking for it
Thank you Dace, very helpful suggestions. I feel stronger already! I will make myself worry less and just go with what I want to say. In the long term I am hoping to that I get the chance to help people, it’s why I began the blog in the first place. I only ask my husband and daughter to look over and find the mistakes in spelling and grammer for me, i am attrociously bad and there’s only so much a spell-shecker can do. neither ask me to change things and it lets me share with them and include them in this new journey.
I’d say write it as it comes–little nuggets of memories that make for digestible reading. One thing I’m learning about blogging is that long, really wordy posts have a limited audience. But the idea of starting with a cast of characters makes a lot of sense!
Thank you Kerry, well no one has all that much time these days so I can certainly see how little fast read snippets will be more popular. It will suit me as some days I wouldn’t have any more energy available than for a nugget! I think once I have my characters and a basic background in place that will be the way I’d like to go.. not that i’m hankering after the popularity, as nice as it feels but it will suit my life better.
Shelley, Welcome to the wonderful world of blogging and thanks so much for following Chronicles Of A Dystonia Muse. Blogging certainly poses an unexpected journey replete with twists and turns as we play a game of hopscotch through our lives. Enjoy the ride and revel in your dance of memories. -Pamela-
Thanks Pamela, i enjoyed reading through your bog so much. there was one thing you said resonated with me deeply….. must go find it…
yes here.. “So let me remind you, as I’ve reminded myself, that life is about so much more than Dystonia…or any medical condition. We all have room in our minds for those much-needed respites from our constant – and unwelcome – companions.”
living with any condition is hard work.. but it’s the living that counts. thank you and i’ll be reading
I think , when you long to write the trick is unjumbling the ideas and thought, getting the memories and recollections into focus WRITING. I believe a blog is a great place to start. When you have an idea or a thought – blog it – its like a notebook but you can interact with the world for feedback. I find it cathartic and it clarifies my mind and solidifies by thoughts at the time. Thoughts and ideas are often confused and muddled if you don’t pin them down in that moment they disappear back into the disarray. Sounds like you have a lot to say – I look forward to hearing some of it
Thank you, you really helped me pin things down. i have a fair idea of what i want to do now and i’m really loving it here at wordpress. hating on myself for not doing it sooner heehee! i have cognitive problems due to fibromyalgia, people tend to call it fibro fog. very apt as your head is filled with a fog some days, like thinking through porridge lol! my thought can be ther one moment and gone the next, i have notepads all over the house for me to grab this last week! thank you again, i also look forward to keeping up to date with your blogging though you don’t seem to have updated in a while.
Shelley, So lovely to share through our blogs. -Pamela-
Thank you again Pamela, hope you are having a good day today
Hi Shelley, thank you for following my blog, and I wanted to say that you have a great start, to yours. The great thing about writing a blog is that you don’t have to limit yourself to just one general category, You can have several of them, so go ahead and write some of those fiction stories. I started mine from wanting to share a fiction book with my friends that I wrote several years ago and could not get published. After all the rigamarole, of getting an agent and shopping the book around, I came to the conclusion that being a published author was not what I wanted. I didn’t want that public of a life. After all the chapters were shared, I realized that I wanted to keep on blogging, it was I then stepped out of my comfort zone and started writing more personal entries. Your writing captured me and I want to read more, so step on out there and create!!! Charlene
Hi Charlene, thank you for the support! so appreciated! i think i will diversify because blogging on childhood abuse could become very heavy and i prefer the light. i do enjoy the anonimity of a blog. i too would not enjoy being in the spotlight in a publishing world. no deadlines for me.. no thank you very much! i am meant to be keeping stress to a minimum not heaping it on lol! thanks again
Throw caution to the wind, dive right in and go for it! Looking forward to what you are going to write. ‘A good egg’ – love this expression! It’s one I use, but rarely hear. Good luck!
Hi Chris, thanks for stopping by. i love your poetry, beautiful prose. i’m gaining confidence here and have planned my cast of characters and after that i’m going wild! a good egg is a great expression, quirky and a little dated, just like me! suits perfectly!
Good luck with blog. One advice-keep it 5 paragraphs or less, quick delivery, most of us must cover a lot of blog territory each day and can’t read novels for a post. Expand beyond just self and family reasons obvious.
Carl that sounds like excellent advice! Thank you very much, really appreciate the time taken to stop by and help me find my way.
Congratulations of getting started Shelley.
Yes, I agree with Dace, sack the editor, if people are going to pick apart your puntuation or spelling, you probably don’t want their opinion.
I’d being interested in hearing about now, your moving forward in the context of what has gone before . . . just make sure that anything you write about your past is what you want the world to know: I vent in a private journal.
As for your zombie idea, I like the idea of key people rising to help the youth set things to rights! No zombies snacking on people, you’re right, it’s all been done to death! Pun intended.
And lastly, I have no idea what condition you’re living with, it’s not important, you’re a woman who, like many of us, is living with a legacy of past difficulties and current issues, making the most of now, seeing the beauty around you. Now is all we have, move forward.
Hello Wendy, thank you for coming by. i really appreciate what you have to say. i need to keep my spellcheckers for now, one of my health issues is impaired cognitive function, for instance i might write “i had a nice cup of jam” putting jam instead of tea without realising it. a quick click of spell check before i hit publish will deal with most of the spelling errors but it can’t weedle out my misplaced words. it is my husband and my daughter that will check it over for me and they will simply say “did u mean to use …… there”. if i did there’s not another word said about it. i like that it involves them to be honest, neither have a wordpress account, so they won’t be passing my blog at all really. my daughter would like to know more about my life, with my head in a good place and with her a grown woman it is a good time for her to follow my story. i am sure it will also give my husband a better insight of the life we have shared up to now. I am very much living in the now, i feel no need to vent, simply to tell and show how i became me and where i intend to go from here. i think that might be what you are hoping for from me. Thank you again Wendy and i’d just like to say what a great blog you have built, you are so creative. my daughter is an art student and she would be interested in many of your projects.
A big welcome to the blogosphere! May you have a grand time with it. Blogging is one of the best ways to express oneself. I always have a pad and paper everywhere: bathroom, under the pillow, kitchen, the train, the plane – for capturing blog ideas.
Thank you for the welcome. i am having a grand time already and am loving being able to express myself in this way. it feels very freeing. I have already started dropping notepads and pencils around my home, first it was by the bed, then in the bathroom and so on! my memory is bad at the best of times but when fibrofog kicks in i have literally seconds to hold onto a thought before it is gone so the notebooks are invaluable. You have an interesting and entertaining blog, it’s going to take some time to go through it all! best wishes and thanks again
Thanks for visiting my blog–thought I’d see what you’re up to. It’s so wonderful to see you sharing all of your ideas! I agree with the others who’ve said not to deliberate too much–just to put virtual pen to virtual paper, as it were.
I have the same “brain fog” issues myself, some days, and I know that it helps me to just sit down and WRITE when I get my ideas. Sometimes I sit and write several posts (and schedule them for posting in advance) just so I don’t forget my ideas, and how I want to develop them…. oops, there goes my secret… 🙂
OOOooo! you can shedule postings? this could be essential for down times! of course it would mean i would have to have things written in advance which may prove a problem! heehee.. there are seriously not enough wakeful and productive hours in my life! sorry to hear you have the dreaded fog and i’m glad you have found writing helps. i really do appreciate the advise and support. i have such a busy week lined up that i’m not sure i will be able to get much done here but i will be diving in as soon as i can. thanks again
Hello Shelley, thanks for checking out my beginning blog, and for the follow, which led me here. Thanks for sharing your voice and your stories with us. You have an engaging style!
Thank you for the encouragement. i had to follow your blog, very interesting with the french lanuage slant and i loved the chef links.
Like you I have just started my blog. Thank you for following by the way. I believe we write when it is time for us to write. I teach writing and one block is that people think of it formally, as in a grand event, or that there is some grand Ta Da required to become a writer. I love how Julia Cameron in The Artist’sWay and The Right to Write tells us that we all have something to share and we should be heard. We ARE creativity because we come from Divinity. like you I have a list of topics. I let the Spirit dictate what I shall write believing that doing so is because one person would benefit from the message. I look forward to reading your blog. And again thank you for your support for my new blog.
Thank you for your response. i appreciate what you are saying about writing and i hope to more fully open myself to the experience so it becomes more organic. i am finding your blog very interesting and will continue to pop by to read your posts.
You are a welcome Balloon to WordPress! So glad you found it and floated in to be among us! My experience has been very positive…the bloggers are so supportive, encouraging and kind! I have made some new friends…even though we are thousands of miles apart…it is wonderful! I wish you all the best! Do NOT worry…..I found this a positive place to begin our desire to write and to be listened to…let the balloon of worry float away into the air! I do understand…my penchant, over the years, has been: “Do not let the birds of worry build a nest in your hair! You have great courage! and I have read several of your entries— you are so sincere –and you will find your way because of your honesty of heart!
I am so touched by your wonderful comments, my hair looks like a birds nest most days so i will work hard at not letting any worry birds settle in there! i have had a few things get in the way of my blogging more this last few weeks, very low evergy levels with too much to do, pc problems and the enjoyable one.. i’ve had my daughter and boyfriend home! i have so much i want to write about and have so much more confidence thanks to wonderful bloggers like yourself.
I look forward to exploring /sharing your life’s journey! My only advice: ‘write from your heart’. You can’t go wrong if you do. Thank you for visiting my blog. It means more to me than you might imagine. itty
hello itty, you are welcome, i enjoyed reading your blog very much. i’m delighted you stopped by. i thank you for the advice, i am certainly trying to put my whole heart into this blog.
Enjoy the adventure!