A Real Human Being

I Always Wanted to Be a Writer

Hi, I’m Josh.

I’ve started and restarted this blog countless times.

Such is the hallmark of my writing “career”.

Career is in quotation marks because I don’t really consider myself having an actual writing career. A career is something that makes you money, right?

My writing journey is probably more appropriate.

I wanted it to be my career. Since I was a kid I wanted to be a writer. I loved writing. I loved reading. I loved everything about the written word. Its transportative powers. Its ability to make real something that isn’t. To bring the imagination to life.

Reading books was the original escapism, I suppose. But it felt like a much healthier version of it than the modern-day Netflix-binging type of escapism.

When I was a kid I would read for hours on end. There were times I hoped I would be sick so I could stay home from school and read. Other times I stayed in from recess to write a story.

It was my power to create the life I wanted.

I would have a good idea, I would feel inspired, and I would sit down and start to write. The words would flow and I could just sort of move my fingers over the keyboard and watch as a story, or a moment from a story, would reveal itself. 

Sometimes I even surprised myself.

But then things started to shift for me. As I got older and, perhaps more serious about writing, it started feeling more and more like a chore, and less and less like creation. 

I could start a story, or a treatise on life or some philosophical concept, and things would go well….for a while. And then the stress would kick in.

Then I would slip out of my heart and into my head and everything I came up with from that moment on would sound like garbage. And I would keep trying, and the stress would build, and then things would sound even more like garbage. And then eventually even the stuff that I wrote in my inspired state would start to sound like garbage to me and I would scrap the whole thing.

Not writer’s block, really. But something else altogether. Almost like writer’s poison or writer’s sabotage. 

I would get so worried about making everything perfect that nothing was good enough.

So after a while of that, I just stopped writing.

What a shame.

I always had something of a talent for it. A natural talent. That is not meant to be any sort of a brag. I’m overly critical of myself in most areas of my life. Including writing. But I had to admit that I had a natural ability to write that didn’t seem to come as easily to my peers.

I suppose the first time I realized this was in 6th grade.

I remember my teacher, Mr. Johnson, had given us a writing assignment. He was a tall guy, Mr. Johnson. I mean, I suppose everyone is tall when you are 12. He loved the Beatles. Those are the two things I remember most about him. 

That, and he really encouraged my writing.

I had written a story about a kid who found a magical necklace that gave him superpowers or something silly like that. But I remember when writing it I could really imagine myself in the story and really describe the details of the imaginary experience. It was fun.

But I didn’t really think much of it.

Until Mr. Johnson pulled his chair over to my desk and wanted to have a serious talk with me.

I thought I must have done something wrong. I was a little nervous.

But then he proceeded to tell me how impressed he was with my story.

And I could really feel his sincerity. He raved about it and wondered how I came up with the idea.

I don’t remember a lot of the details of our conversation. I just remember him truly loving what I had written. And I remember feeling so surprised, and grateful. And encouraged.

It really is a shame that I haven’t pushed myself to write more. To break through the wall of resistance holding me back from pursuing this worthy goal.

But that’s what this blog is for.

To help me rediscover, and refine, my writing skills.

And to create connection.

See, I think this world is in desperate need of connection. I mean, not talking or sharing. Or yelling. We have plenty of that. But real connection.

It’s something I have been passionate about for many years now.

Not necessarily good at, but passionate about.

I agree with Brene Brown when she said:

“Connection is why we’re here. We are hardwired to connect with others, it’s what gives purpose and meaning to our lives, and without it there is suffering.”

There is a lot of suffering in the world right now. And I don’t think there needs to be. We can alleviate a lot of it. But we must first learn to connect. To put aside our differences, to see each other as friends, focus on common ground, and forge some true connections.

That will probably be a big theme for this blog. I’ll share my thoughts, and some practical ideas, and try to create some opportunities to help people learn to connect with each other.

I’m not going to worry as much about the analytics as maybe I should. That’s one thing that has kept me from writing a blog in the past. I’m tired of having to do keyword research and think in terms of retention and out-competing those in the same niche and all of that. It’s exhausting. And I think it’s counterproductive to true connection. Or antithetical to it at least.

Of course there will probably need to be a little bit of it. But I don’t want these posts to feel like they were written for any other purpose than to connect people. To share true and honest thoughts and feelings and to help others do the same. To share some real tips and ideas and practical knowledge where I have it, and to ask and explore questions where I don’t.

Hopefully this will be a truly rewarding experience, not only for me, but for some others out there.

Remember that you are worthy of love and grace. You can grow and improve and become happier and healthier. But you don’t need to earn grace. And grace is one of the most powerful forces for bringing peace, joy, and positive change into your life.

So open your mind and heart to receive it.

And let’s connect!

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