One of the most rewarding aspects about blogging is not only making friends with fellow bloggers such as Anita but interacting with readers who I've never met.
In a recent post I lamented the saddest part of summer ending -- the end of my homegrown fruits. In it I included a picture of my pear tree which had hundreds of pears that to us were inedible since they never seem to ripen. A blog reader, Sandra, whom I've never met in person said she would be happy to take some of those pears off my hands. I was happy to send a bagful over to the shop so she could stop by and pick them up. I was even happier to learn that Sandra was kind enough to leave three jars of homemade preserves -- peach, plum and hot pepper -- in our mailbox.
She certainly didn't have to do that and I am very thankful she did. I've never had plum or hot pepper preserves before and can't wait to try them. Since I'm on this diet I figure I'll make it my Sunday morning treat. Thank you Sandra!
Another benefit of blogging to me is the opportunity to get things off of my chest. I would hope readers realize that I'm not really angry when I air my complaints. That's just the way I talk. I imagine that some of my sarcasm might get lost in print and people who don't personally know me might not "get me." Sometimes I get discouraged and feel like I'm just writing in a journal that sits in the bottom of my drawer and wonder why I'm wasting my time blogging. I see other blogs that have "hundreds" and even "thousands" of followers while I have a pitiful 19 listed, although I do have more than that from Facebook and other places that just haven't signed up to be a "follower." Still, they're nowhere in the hundreds. I might get there if I gave away gifts, or just focused on writing tips, or ended each post with a question for my readers to answer, but that's not me.
I've been discouraged lately after reading literary agents' blogs, expecially one that cautioned that an agent might not want to represent an author, not based on their talent or book idea, but just based on the agent's perception of the person -- either through their political leanings if different than theirs, what they "discover" about them on the internet, or their blog -- especially if it's "rants." Hmmmm, as you can see from the title of my blog, that might be a problem. I would hope any perspective agent, or anyone, would not make such sweeping judgements before delving a little deeper into someone, by giving them the opportunity to "clarify" if there is a "concern," but who knows. I've been thinking about giving up blogging, and then this morning I opened my mailbox and found this message that was sent to me on Facebook:
"I forgot to mention that I am very happy that you are setting goals and meeting them. Congrats on weight loss, progress with your novel, ect. ect... I dont think you realize that you influence alot of people by being a voice. Your blogs have many qualities. One quality is that they inspire others. It's a gift. Hearing how you tackle daily life with a sense of humor / honesty inspires others to do the same. Keep up the good work. JEFF"
Thank you Jeff for the kind words. I appreciate them more than you know. I realize I can't appeal to everyone, but it's certainly encouraging to know that some people can find "inspiration" here...