Thursday, August 1, 2013

return to post: the trouble with feelings

For as long as I have been a writer, I have struggled with "feelings."

This is hardly an uncommon thing for a person who writes, or really produces anything. A strong, well-written piece is sort of a piece of the writer's soul — it represents hours on end that the writer spent interviewing subjects, going over word choices before they ever met the page. If it's investigative, it probably represents a number of hours on the phone with cranky gatekeepers of information, unable or unwilling to give the writer the access necessary to make the piece a reality.

So it only makes sense (sort of) how writers tend to react when their work finally goes out for public viewing ... and people hate it. Or maybe they don't hate it, but they find fault with something someone said. Or they take issue with something someone says in the piece, and inevitably blame the author (instead of, you know, the person who actually said the thing).

To use a really dumb example, think of a poem you wrote in the sixth grade. Did you work hard on it? Did you put a piece of yourself into it?
Did anybody like it?

In a way, this is an explanation for why so many writers don't take criticism particularly well. To be completely fair, it also provides an explanation for why many people in the public sphere objectively hate the the press that covers them: they're pouring themselves into whatever it is they're doing — coaching football or performing stand-up comedy or being a terrible member of Congress or whatever — and people like me lob stones at them ... just, you know, because.

This is sort of the reason this blog went dark – to the utter dismay of really nobody except me — before the 2012 football season. Well, it's the initial reason I stepped away. The other problem was that, increasingly, I have found myself with little or nothing to say. I'd blame Twitter, but the problem is probably me. OK, so it's definitely me.

All that to say, I hope I can give this thing another shot. I enjoy my little corner of the internet, even if it's already been taken away from me by more capable people with a lot more to say. I'm not looking toward a regular posting scheduled yet, but maybe we can at least have a little fun.

No comments: