That’s one of the reactions I get when I mention my blog. It’s kind of like a journal of everything I’m going through since my house fire, I say. Oh. Some are immediately interested and ask for the link. Others have a noncommittal eye-averting look on their face. That’s ok. It’s not for everyone, and in the end, I’m doing it for myself. That’s not to say I don’t want readers – I do! In fact, one of the downfalls of blogging is the ‘stats’ page, where you can see how many people have read your blog on a particular day or viewed a particular post. It’s become quite addicting to check my numbers. Some days have great numbers and other days, well, pitiful. There doesn’t seem to be much of a pattern, either. So I continue to post and hope for the best.
When I’m writing about a topic, I sometimes wonder how people will react. That doesn’t affect how or what I write, but I speculate on what kind of reaction a post will create. Some posts I thought would attract controversy, like the ones on health care or God, haven’t (so far). Other posts, often on very serious topics like depression or the death of a child, had record-breaking viewership. Difficult as they were to write, those topics are important so I’m glad they attracted attention. At times I try to view my situation with some humor or irony; readers often see through the dark humor and are sympathetic. Like most writers, there are days when I fear I’ve run out of ideas, there’s nothing more to write. But my blog is essentially about my life and life keeps on happening. My kids do something (like having a drinking party when I’m out of town) or there are problems with the house (rebuilding is taking longer than anticipated) and there you have it – more ideas to complain, I mean, write about.
It was exciting to get my first subscribers, mostly friends and family, of course. Then a few strangers and fellow bloggers joined up. A friend from Germany subscribed – my first international subscriber – and I have a reader from down under now and then. Many click on the posts linked to facebook but some are on twitter; a few find me from key words they’ve googled. Most of the reactions have been positive and encouraging and the comments interesting, often helpful. I’m never quite sure who’s reading me though sometimes in conversation, a person nods knowingly when I mention something I’ve posted. I don’t think my kids have read it though I’ve mentioned my blog to them. They’re probably not interested in what mom has to say, but one time my son told me that if I publish it and make a lot of money (haha), he wants a share of it. I’m not sure if he’s read any of it though I told him I’ve written about him. These days his main interest is getting away from home, which I take as a healthy sign of independence; he’s not too interested in my activities. As he turns away, I’ll turn towards my writing about the house – the rubble, the gutting, the rebuilding – and my post-fire life. I’m enjoying the process of writing more than I ever did all those years in school, and I’ll keep hoping for readers but not obsessing about it, at least not too much.