Thursday, December 22, 2011

Who am I?

How existential of me to ask that.  And really, if I were philosophizing on my true meaning - my true reason for existence - then I think it would take up an entire book and not a blog entry.

No, the question is much simpler than that.

One of the ways I know to make money when I depart for my "epic journey of lateness" and explore the US in a motorhome (est.2015) is to write.  Yay! Writing.

Easy enough.

But how do you make money at it?  I don't mean $25 here and there, I mean $1000/month. Or more.  Well, I understand I need to establish myself as a writer in a freelance world.  I need to have stories and an angle and a friend in the publishing business.


I actually need to work at this.

So where to start?  What do I know?  Always write about what you know.  Easy.

But what do I know?  Really know?

And that's where the problem seems to exist for me.

Here's what I know...REALLY know:
How to persevere
How to raise a child
How to be a single mom
How to live (or not live) with someone who has a terrible addiction
How to juggle life - not always successfully
I know what it's like to be withdrawn, what it's like to hide.  I know what it's like to pretend you are someone else.
I know the experience of acting - from a chorus role to the lead in a musical - and everything behind the scenes.
How to have a successful marriage
How to have a successful and angst-free divorce
How to be honest

But beyond that - I'm not an expert in anything.  I have my passions, but I don't consider myself to be an expert in any field.  I can tell stories and have a sardonic wit.  I can see the humor in just about everything.  I am the first to laugh at myself.  And I find myself a little afraid of everything around me.

Insecurity is a bitch.  If I were to look at myself on paper, without knowing it was me, I would be mightily impress with the strength of that woman.  But knowing it's me - I just know that I did what every other person in this world does - I put one foot in front of the other and move forward.  Sometimes through mud or windstorms, or blizzards, or floods.  Sometimes through the most beautiful of sunny days.

I am no different than anyone else.

Except I have a way to find my voice and the voice of others.  I have the talent to put that voice out there and allow my experiences to be heard.

Is that voice publishable?

Is there anything I can say that hasn't already been said? That someone wants to hear?

I have no idea.

And I don't think I will really ever know the answer to that unless I start to write from the heart.  Not a blog - but something more marketable. An article. An opinion column. Something to sell to a small paper or two or twenty or more.

Maybe a weekly piece would be enough to carry me forward as a writer and as a way to finance my adventure through space.  Maybe those stories on the road will become a future book (yes! even with pictures!), or at the very least, a small voice heard by a few souls who still read.

I understand that today is the day I need to figure it all out.  I can't wait until I'm on the road to test the waters.  The time is now...

The first step is always the most frightening. From my experience, the next few steps after that aren't so easy either...