Being Freshly Pressed Has Changed My Life
Yesterday marked exactly one month since one of my posts (click here to read it ) landed me a coveted spot on the Freshly Pressed page.
I remember the days before my FP accolades. I would torture myself by checking my blog 8, 9, or 10 times (to see what I mean, click here ) a day, hoping for some sign that someone out there “liked” my post or wanted to “follow” my blog or thought I was worthy enough for front page featuring. The way out there part of me even secretly hoped that if I got Freshly Pressed, someone trolling blogs for the next “it” writer would happen upon my post and move heaven and Earth to find me. I would be soaking in a hot bath with way too many bubbles when someone would lay intently on my doorbell. After cursing under my breath about how I can never get a moment of rest, I would force myself from the tub and into a gigantic robe and drip toward the front door. There some Publisher’s Clearing House-esque lady would be waiting with balloons, and representatives with contracts (from the many publishing companies jockeying for my signature) would be fighting for prime position on the porch behind her. I would blush (as much as a black girl can) and accept the balloons and contracts for my “lawyer” (my sister-in-law who has no idea I’ve claimed her services) to review. I would sign some incredibly lucrative deal and write wildly popular books for the rest of my life. Yes, that’s what I hoped would happen.
For all the “champagne wishes and caviar dreams” I had, I am here to tell you, fellow bloggers and readers of blogs, that my life truly is different, even if it’s not exactly the ways I’d hoped.
- The number of people who’ve heard of me and my blog has increased. I now have a grand total of 161 followers! But now, the percentage of visits per followers has dramatically declined (check that out you math people!).I have exactly 5 more people reading my blog than family members and friends compelled to do so because they love me. These people take the time to “like” my stuff and click a star every once in a while to rate my writing.
- I check my blog far less often (even when I write what I consider to be something exceptional). Seven times a day is an improvement! And I no longer put my pants on two legs at a time because I’ve spent so many of my precious morning minutes on WordPress. The rushing is not nearly as bad, and I can put one leg securely in before the other.
I have some FP advice. How accurate it is, I don’t know, but for those of you trying to figure out a trick, try this. It seems to me (and I am by no means an expert) that the majority of blog writing happens during the week. Try posting your best work on a Friday or Saturday evening (you know, when the really good writers are drowning their sorrows in a glass of fermented grapes at the bar). You may hit pay dirt. I did!
- Most significant, though, I’m content again with writing just to write. When I started my blog, I craved an escape from the routines, aggravations, and personal loneliness of life. I wanted to reconnect with who I was an individual, not just as an extension of the people I interact with daily. I needed some time to be my most authentic me, not someone’s teacher or mother or wife. As I started to navigate the blogging world and realize how rare and special being Freshly Pressed was, I wanted that for my blog. And once the hype from a really good post that I just so happened to write in tribute to someone I really admire died down, I realized that the attainment was special but in no way as rewarding as sitting alone on the couch with my laptop and some apple juice uninterrupted and happy just to release some of the stifled creativity that bounced around my head all day. I felt free to try things I’ve been too intimidated to try, like writing fiction, which truly is my passion. I remembered that taking a moment to connect with the me I wanted to cultivate and strengthen made me a better me for the people I love. And if that is all I will ever get from my moment of fame, it was worth it!