Maybe It’s Me?

Oh Readers,

Success and failure are constructs that can suffocate us, and are far more rooted in personal perspective than actual clear-cut definitions. Your success isn’t my success, nor is it the other way around. Many of us share similar concepts of success and failures, and I’m sure somewhere someone reading this agrees with me when I say: this blog dances that line of failure.

When I went back to work, my time seemingly disappeared, and so I lost my way and my passion – as usually happens when I work. Writing is my passion and I want to do it professionally as my career desperately. So why is it so hard for me to put it first?

Oh yeah, because I am also passionate about being an advocate for those without voices and without confidence to use their voice. This is why I work with children, this is why I prioritize my child’s life and passions before my own. When I write I aim to give people something they can connect with and feel represented by, and so writing directly relates to how successful I feel when trying to give representation. The less I write, the less successful I feel.

So I don’t think about this blog unless I have a project to post. For example, I have a book review I have drafted on paper that I need to type and finalize for posting. I wanted desperately for this place to be my platform for original work, and now it’s just a way to get exposure for my work. I’ve had some exciting connections from this project but with its inactivity, those connections are simply that – connections. They are not leads, nor opportunities, and so I again find myself thinking of this blog as a failure.

In addition to being too caught up in the work I do each day with people I can share a smile and laugh with, I’ve been helping other writer friends and family through teaming up to take writing classes online with Coursera. Even though we have been auditing the class, we evaluate one another and push each other to be more than what we were on the last piece we wrote. I’ve had a ton of time to grow and improve in areas where I’ve been weak in the past. I am working on my writing but you cannot see it.

And that makes me feel like a failure too. There’s not many of you watching, if any anymore, but those that *are* watching see that I’ve disappeared. I don’t want to do that, and I don’t want this blog to end this way. Somehow, though, I don’t know how to dig myself out of a hole enough to genuinely promise more content.

Maybe it’s just me. Maybe I’m not going to be able to really focus on this the way I want until I have an income from my published work, or until my husband is making enough money for me to be a “homemaker” – if I ever choose to do only that with myself. I’ve always been a fan of seeing my work grow in front of my eyes, with others to share in the joy of success as defined by me, occasionally my peers. Perhaps that instant gratification is the addiction my anxiety has given me, or perhaps it is the product of my generation’s love of technology, but it is my obstacle to overcome.

I finish projects, but then I do nothing with them. I’ve a many pieces that just don’t feel right enough to be “that piece” that gives me my start in the world of literature and fiction. Maybe it’s me, maybe it’s not – but no matter what I’m doing (or not doing) with this blog, know that this isn’t the end of it. It’s not dying – it’s just taking a really long nap.

(And maybe I should too).

Yours,

xoxo -ab

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Boy Does Time Fly… Like, Too Fast

Dear Readers,

Somehow my dream to prove I’m a capable writer through the art of blogging died – because somehow I can’t make myself compromise the real-life demands of traditional employment with my goals set in stone to write professionally. To all the authors and bloggers making a livable wage from writing *while* being employed elsewhere – lend my your strength!

My blog sort of died (yes, I would say died) in about a year. It really is terribly difficult to maintain a schedule when you have a job which maintains zero set scheduling. As I take another financial risk to have a less demanding position with a set schedule fulfilling part-time hours – MAYBE, and I don’t dare to say more than MAYBE, I will be able to get back into the writing I’d intended for this blog.

I think, unfortunately, I will have to create fresh projects to make it relevant once again. Though I am saddened at my failure, I do feel new life breathing over me. When I go long periods of time without writing it is as if I have lost a part of myself. I cannot exist without a venue to write and share the creative words bouncing around in my brain.

Writing is a lifestyle – and it has got to be my lifestyle.

Before ending this post, allow me to take a moment to thank the few people who have been straggling about my blog and reading bits of my work. Those lone views and likes are what keep my alive – honestly. It reminds me of my purpose and my aspirations when I feel surrounded by darkness. Knowing that somehow, someway, someone has found their way onto my blog – that sends a light into my life. So thank you for all that you do simply by browsing my content. You are fantastic, you are, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

Until the next post,

Yours,

-ab

2 Months & Counting: A Complaint Post about being a grown up…

Dear Readers,

I have two jobs. So it’s been two months since I’ve posted anything, and closer to three months since I’ve posted any new creative content. I feel like I’m drowning because of it.

I gave up a career in which I could have excelled were I happy, but I left that job to be a writer and the mother I always wished I could be to my son. My husband graciously supported me in that endeavor but these things take time. The plan was always for me to get an easy part-time job that never had work that came home with me.

I am simply not that kind of person. Work never stays at work because I do everything with 110% of myself. My work is what defines me, and when I do work that doesn’t make me happy as a I result I become unhappy. Since July my depression has been worsening and worsening, which only flares my anxiety to unmanageable levels. In these months I’ve considered divorce a dozen or so times, suicide even in the worst of days, but I force myself to persevere. I force myself to brave the storms because I created them.

I like to believes somewhere in my subconscious I created these storms to test myself and my family, to see if we are great and capable as I’ve always believed. The other part of me is convinced these the consequences of selfish decision-making. Financial strain at the cost of happiness… But, alas, I insist that writing is a part of me because I’ve never been happier than when I could wake and write for anyone willing to read.

So forgive me if you’re still here. Forgive me if you’re not. Forgive me because in so many ways I can’t forgive myself. I hope that I will find the time to write here for you and grasp at those tendrils of joy that float at my fingertips. I would hope that you would be there waiting to see what it is I come up with in the future.

Please remember that I wish for your happiness.

Yours,

ab

Missing In Action.

Dear Readers Who Are Still Here:

My unexpected absence from my blog the last two weeks was unintentional. I always feel obligated to provide an explanation. Maybe you don’t care; maybe you care enough to read this post; maybe you’ve been dying for an answer. Really, though, a big part of this post is just to satisfy the fact that I want to note what’s been going on for me that has continually disrupted my ability to remain a regular poster.

Firstly, it is extremely difficult to find time to write in a busy life. Some people are busier and accomplish more, while others are struggling to get anything accomplish with fewer “to dos” than I’ve got. We’re all facing different battles – and all of our activities are warring for the same time slots. I’ve found that my job, while part-time, requires far more of my life than I could have ever anticipated. Some people tell me that this is a good sign. They tell me that it’s because I’m such a great manager that work breaks its way into my life in a dozen different ways. Aside from having a job – I’m a mother shuffling a little boy around from activity to activity almost every single day. I am proud, although exhausted, to see that my son has the same drive to be excellent in everything he does in his life. I know that a brilliant future awaits him – even if my future is filled with very long naps.

Secondly, depression makes life stop. It suffocates you. It blackens your field of vision. It grabs ahold of every bone in your body and squeezes until the fractures become too many and your body crumbles under the weight of permeating sorrow. Depression doesn’t go away because you will it to do as much. Depression doesn’t cease to exist if you’re medicated. It is just an unfortunate presence that not everyone can be free of – and I happen to be one of those people. For a couple of weeks I’ve been feeling lost, hopeless, aimless, and exhausted from all my self-loathing. It’s like being caught in a maze with no exit. How can you write a clear sentence if you can’t even think about something with a clear mind?

Lastly, anxiety. I know that two of these three “bullet point” pertain to mental illness and that probably sounds like a copout to some people. The unfortunate reality is that mental illness is devastatingly good at deterring people from accomplishing simple tasks. As my schedule is determined to make me forget that I have a passion for writing, my depression is in opposition trying to remind me that I once loved to write ahead of vital activities such as eating and sleeping! In those tiniest moments as I am able to pull back and look at these two distinct states of mind (and of life, really) – it stresses me out to see that I’m perpetually setting myself up to fail. I am a control freak and I often have to be able to plan and dictate the outcome of nearly any scenario which involves my future. Scatterbrained scheduling and disruptive depression make it impossible for me to overcome any anxiety I feel by failing to reach personal goals.

Being inside my head is most certainly the equivalent to being inside of a tornado of glass.

Writing the World Wednesday is the only thing I’ve been able to keep up with even close to regularly since starting my blog. After I deleted my Tumblr blogs on accident a month ago, I haven’t really been able to build a following online that supplement that small readership I’ve built here. Spiraling downward from there, I found myself saying I was going to give up on trying to get published. Every day I would find a new way to discourage myself from even trying. If I wasn’t discouraging myself then I was finding yet another thing that would prevent me from being able to meeting my writing goals.

I never know what’s going to happen at work and that sucks. There’s no other way to put it. My personal life is similar to organized chaos. If I want to succeed in these conditions then I have to find a way to break free of this constant self-depravation. To do that I have identify the tools that hinder my growth and make myself the master of those things.

I want to start branching out into an area that I’ve not quite touched base on yet with Writing the World: religion. This requires a level of research and understanding that I’ve not yet acquired. I hope to post this coming Wednesday – and Thursday – and Friday! I need to get back to doing my short fiction pieces for the days I’m off of work. What better way to get back on the horse? Small steps – one at a time.

I have always appreciated your readership, and I will always think fondly of your for your support. What I did to deserve anything so humbling and kind is a mystery to me. Here’s to a brighter future!

Yours,

ab xoxox

Technical Difficulties

Dear Readers,

For any aspiring author, an online presence is necessary in order to gain a following. A lot of agents assess your marketability based on your self-promotion. Aside from that, having yourself on the world wide web is a great way to get your work to as many people as possible. Even as a small blog with traffic of maybe 100-200 a week, this is still an important part of making myself known.

Today, through inattention, I accidentally removed several venues for my work. I’m presently trying to figure out the easiest way to restore these connections but the timeline is indefinite to say the least. For this week I am not posting a weekly story as the result. I like to consider myself resilient, so regardless of where I am next week – I won’t delay long. There will be a weekly story next week.

Mostly, I am distraught right now. These venues for my work have been a part of me for six years and to have lost them out of my own error is painful. For now I’ll start planning ahead for the blog and work on some other pieces I’ve been throwing together for contests.

I’m sorry that I have failed you in this respect. Many of my readers are regulars that like the work that I do each and every week, and to you I wish to give you nothing but gratitude for your support. You have been an integral part of my growth as an author. I hope that you will stick around to see me into what will inevitably be a flourishing career. Authors are oftentimes nothing without their readers. Please keep an eye out for the stories that will pop in next week – and in the meantime, keep making the world a better place!

Yours,

Alixx Black

Fantastic News.

Dear Readers,

No – it’s not anything major like a publishing deal or anything like that. Although, I am getting a short story published. Read this post for that information. This post is just to let you know what to expect.

Things are finally slowing down at work – which is bittersweet. However, that means I can post more often – although not necessary on a set schedule perfectly being that my schedule is different every single week. Wednesday Posts will not change, of course.

That all being more or less a review of how things currently run – I just wanted to announce that I’ve drafted an opinion article! I know some of you really loved what I’ve done for opinion articles in the past so I want you to get excited.

A teaser for you on the topic: friend.

I have a lot emotion and thought vested in this particular topic. I’ve been sitting on the idea and the outline for several weeks now. I’ll be posting it within the week, though, so I want you to keep an eye out. Once it’s edited I’ll put it up for your viewing pleasure, I promise!

Thanks again to everyone for reading my work. It means more to me than anything. Here’s to a happy year of posting 2016! My best to you, and I’ll see you around.

Yours,

ab

Hiatus Happens

Dear Readers-  if you’re even still around,

I am in this impromptu hiatus currently. I have a lot happening in my personal life that has made it impossible to keep up with my blog. I shouldn’t be gone too much longer, but please understand that I – too – have a life that will occasionally take precedence over my writing.

I appreciate any quiet support for the things that are happening that have kept me from posting regularly.

My posts will be intermittent and random, unfortunately. I have a really long story I’ve been working on that I want to post called “America’s Sweethearts.” Today I’ll be posting a poem as well. But otherwise, it might be another week or two before I can get back into the schedule I laid out for myself.

Thanks for any time you spend on my blog reading the work I produce. It is greatly appreciated.

Yours,

ab