Real Life

The defensive writer returns

Heeeeeeeeeeeeey guuuuuuuuuys.

At this particular moment, I’m baking a double batch of cookies to take to my coworkers on Monday because my eggs are about to go bad; counter space is so sparse, I’m cooling cookies on a paper bag on the floor (tell no one.)

You could say my life has changed since my last post.

Why the year-and-a-half hiatus? For that we need context.

  1. About my job…
    • I might one day write a hilarious-yet-heartbreaking memoir about my first post-college job. Or I might write vague posts about “seasons of change” and the “inspiring power of difficulty” without ever naming my problems. I have plenty of customer stories, like the time a guy walked up to the cookie case, scanned the 30+ labels, and asked, “What kinds of cookies ya got?” or the the time a woman stood in line for twenty minutes only to get to the front and a order “a donut” without elaborating. Aside from that, there’s not much else I can say until the tell-all is published (and that’s only if my lawyers win that battle.)
  2. Writerly ambitions
    • Did I mention I wrote half a novel last year? I used to assume people would find me pretentious if I brought it up. (Fun story: THEY DID NOT. Instead, they were REALLY interested and asked all sorts of questions about the plot.) (Even my pastor.) (Even strangers at bars.) (YOU try coming up with a plot synopsis that leaves out all the sex, murder, swearing, and the fact that it was BASED ON ATLA FANFICTION.) (Did I mention this happened at a CHURCH-SANCTIONED GRADUATES DINNER!?)
      For most of 2016 and 2017, this “Avatar”-inspired novel was my main artistic focus while blogging was more of a side thing. I realized maintaining a blog was pulling my focus from an idea I loved, so I stopped blogging.
      Then, when my coauthor and I parted ways 80,000 words into the second draft, I spent the next year recovering.
      I’m still not over it. Maybe that should be my memoir.
  3.  Becoming a “serious” writer
    • Back up to 2015 when a newly-graduated Baby Lauren had been having a lot of conversations about goals and careers and ambitions. Baby Lauren loved to write and made the mistake of telling people this. (In their defense, I had NO direction and was hoping someone would tell me the exact right thing to do.) She got some great advice from a fellow writer: “If you start a blog and write every day, you’ll create a portolio of work that might land you a book contract or writing job.”
      This is great advice…if your objective is to publish an advice book or write for an online publication. A lot of people I know feel more driven if they have concrete goals like these to work toward.
      I am not that way.
      Landing a contract or a giant audience or a job in a publishing house (Note to friends and family: STOP SUGGESTING THIS AS A CAREER) won’t make me a writer. I am a writer, status symbols aside, because I write stuff. Huzzah, and all that.
      While I see the value in creating a body of work online, I’ve found that hard, weekly deadlines turn something I love (i.e., complaining about stuff) into a chore that saps my creative energy.

So those are the things that kept me from blogging, choosing instead to write slam poetry and Christian comedy routines in real life without showing anyone. I hadn’t thought about blogging again until I told my mom a protracted story about “A Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time” and she screamed into the phone, “WHY HAVEN’T YOU BLOGGED ABOUT THIS?”

Fair question.

I still complain about stuff (obviously.) I see a lot of theater, watch a lot of shows, and garner a lot of opinions.

I’ve missed having an audience.

I wouldn’t say I’m “back” and I can’t promise I’ll be writing all the time. I’m learning to be fine with that. Because GUESS WHAT? Deadlines or not, I’m still a writer with plenty of entertainment to criticize.

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