Monday, November 04, 2013

Mari Goes Meta

Subtitle: the one where I write about writing about what I write about.

Sub-subtitle (what? It's a thing): why is it I always think too-deep thoughts on a Monday?

Every post deserves a picture.
This post has a picture of a goat on a bridge.
Through the month of October, I blogged a lot here and also took a blogging class with one of my favorite local faces, Jennifer James McCollum, who writes amazing and thoughtful posts about generation X (of which I am one) on her blog.

One of the running themes in the class has been to consider what we each write about, why we write about it, who we're trying to reach, what our goals are and are we meeting them?

For an introspection-prone person such as myself, that's the sort of stuff I thought I was dealing with already on a daily basis; but I went way deeper this month. I began this blog as a place to park capital-B, capital-T Big Thoughts.  

I'm a writer; it's not a choice I've made, it's what I must do. I gave this blog a name quite unceremoniously when I stumbled backwards into a all-women music blog (where I still, on occasion, drop it like it's hot), and from there I made great connections (I owe that all to Tiffani who made the introductions).  I'm still not sold on the name, but it's been a few years now and really it fits what is to be found here--it's my notebook and nothing is too polished; this is an online version of my journal.

It started kind of pointless and ranty; I purposely avoided talking about my children--I needed a sacred space that was mine, all mine, only mine, and not for anyone else (I may or may not be harboring an inner hermit who needs a lot of personal space). Over time, it's changed. Mostly, my opinions drive my content and I've never been all that interested in breaking big (as opposed to bad). But this month has really made me examine what I'm doing with my time and with yours--what am I trying to accomplish here? And the biggest question: who am I?

One of the class exercises we did was run down a list of questions, that are all pointed at "tribe building," something we are all trying to do. We were asked to consider: Who are the people in our neighborhood (more specifically, who are the people in our blog community)? How many people do you want to have in your community? What are you trying to get out of your blog? Who's standing in your way? Who's championing you?

Good questions, all of them; brought me to a few realizations about what I want to accomplish. I want to connect to people and entertain them. If I can make one person say "Huh, I never thought about it that way" then I feel like a success. While I love writing here, I would also love paid writing work (call me!), that my biggest challenge is often myself. That I need to invest more energy with people who understand how important writing is to me, because it's second only to my loved ones.

This exercise was so telling for me, for my own answers and for the others in the room as well. I see how we battle ourselves and others in trying to carve out this writing niche. And what I realized is that my blog is about being heard. For many years, I felt like my voice has been stifled. my creativity stifled or even questioned by others. But sometimes you just don't realize how much it affects you until you sit down to consider it. And this month I've had the opportunity to do just that. I've been pushed to write a lot of things--poetry, even--that wasn't assigned but just kind of came out because of all the deep thought thinking.

So, who am I? I'm a person with something to say, a voice to say it in and a platform to say it with. And I appreciate you coming along for the ride.


  1. Proud to be part of the tribe, Mari!

  2. So often I experience your blog as some great 80's movie. There's passion, individuality, music, and that "need to be heard." Imagine me holding up a boom box right now. Go you!

    1. Best. Compliment. Ever.
      I'm gonna laminate this and carry it with me, always!

  3. Mari somehow the goat fits- your blog is special, creative, musical, and witty with your voice and perspective. I HAVE thought to myself "huh, I never thought about it that way" when reading your blog. Keep blogging Mari, they (tribe) will read!