When I sat down to write this first post, I’d thought that I was set on talking about the current state of my writing life. The novel whose characters seem to envelop me in a warm hug one moment, then kick me in the shins and run away screaming, refusing to cooperate like a flock of bratty toddlers the next. A recent and welcome return to my first love, screenwriting. And of course, the daily dance with Resistance.
But there was one topic that kept repeatedly elbowing its way to the front of the line, no matter how many times I ignored it.
I know, it’s a goofy word. But my struggle with it almost permanently derailed my determination to start this blog.
To confess that navigating the jungles of cyber space scares the bejesus out of me while simultaneously attempting to make a home there probably seems ridiculous. But the truth is, I will likely need a 12 step program to detatch from my BlackBerry (“My name is Mary and I’m a manual keypad addict.”). I have also been indicted for the heinous crime of using the terms “emoticon” and “emoji” interchangeably. And up until a week ago, I thought Mozilla was something from a Japanese monster movie.
So, what finally pushed me past my fears and onto this site?
I’d love to tell you there was a triumphant moment when I jumped up on my desk, shook my fist at the heavens and declared my dominion over trepidation of all kinds. That it was sheer, unadulterated bravery that catapulted me into action.
But it was actually something much less valiant.
I was sick and tired of being afraid of anything more technologically advanced than Facebook. Of shrinking into the shadows while people young enough to be my kids and old enough to be my grandparents boldly put their voices out into the world. Of wanting to crawl under a rock every time someone asked, “Soooo…how’s that blog coming along?”
It was sobering to tally up just how much time I had incinerated by believing in my supposed incompetence. But the hard reality is, I never needed to be an SEO genius or able to write code in my sleep.
I just needed to start.
So, with the help of the most patient and talented web guru on the planet (thank you, Ken Law), I finally ventured into WordPress. Shockingly, it did not a) eat my brain, b) melt my laptop or c) cause me to singlehandedly break the Internet. Sure, I fumbled around, turned the air blue every time I made a mistake, and thought more than once about returning to my previous status as a cyber fossil.
But then I did the math.
I’m turning 50 next summer. And while I fully intend to be here for many more decades to annoy the crap out of those I love the most, time is guaranteed to no one. As my dear friend and writing coach Jennifer Blanchard always says, “Don’t die with your stories inside you.”
So, here I am. And for all I know, I may be the only one in the room for now. But at least I finally have a room. And if you’ve found me – whether in passing or on purpose – then welcome. And come on in. I’ll do my very best to make it worth your while to stick around.