I’ve always wanted to be a writer. Secretly. Awakened in the early 90’s, I fashioned fables written upon truths, and poems of Gaelic dreams. I have imagined myself with pen in hand for almost 25 years now. Was never sure though how to start, or how to say what I wanted to say. None of that was clear. I just enjoyed writing, and wished I could make my living at it.
Yesterday was the second time I’ve been published. The first was a Celtic inspired poem (of 3) I submitted to a Celtic literary journal published by an American University. The name of the journal completely escapes me now, but I will have to dig out that poem now of course. I remember it was called “The Emerald Isle”. It surprised me that they chose that one, out of the three I submitted (as per their rules). I can’t recall now what the other two were, but I could take a guess. I’m not even sure if I still have them, actually.
Anyways, yesterday a piece I wrote for this blog, I re-wrote and submitted to our local newspaper for the Heritage Book Project I’m involved in. Plus, I did a DO YOU KNOW THE NAME OF THE BUILDING IN THIS PHOTO, with a prompt to go to our blog for the answer. Though they called it a website, which for the sake of brevity is how I’ve described it to the non-technical-digital-computer-savvy committee members. They just use the internet for Genealogy research, work and email. I’m their link to the modern, digital world. Which I find rather humourous given I didn’t use any of it for close to 4 years. Maybe that’s why the relationship jives; I “get” their resistance, and therefore am more in tune with what they can relate to.
The article was successful, as my site stats indicate, we got 63 hits last night on the blog over 8 hours, which isn’t bad. Considering this is a small village paper. I have no idea what their circulation is, but it’s not HUGE by any standard. Though it has a loyal following, and it is a fantastic community paper. The editor has been so incredibly supportive, and wrote a wonderful feature piece as a lead in to mine. It meant our Project had a full page, PLUS the Letter to the Editor piece I wrote thanking the community for their participation in our first scanning day. We invited people out to have their photos scanned they wanted to be included in the book.
My Grandmother and two other local woman started the paper in the 1950’s…and it remains to this day independently owned. Rare now even for small papers. My mother worked there practically her whole entire life. Ended her days doing Advertisements on a Mac, just as she’d wanted. She was the face of the paper, the first one you saw when you walked in the door. She was a fixture. It always bothered her that she hadn’t gone to Graphic Arts school, but yet she still became one. As a wise friend once quipped, “what is for you will not pass you by”.
To have something of mine published in this paper is … I don’t know the word … maybe BRILLIANT comes close. This means more than that poem, because this is my home. This is the place I spent all my years of childhood and teenage years. I have walked these streets in skin-tight jeans and concert t-shirts, at the side of a gaggle of same, sporting hockey hair and plaid jackets.
Grandma and Mom both contributed to that paper, and now so have I. That’s important. Especially now with so many things uncertain in my life. With no home to call my own, and a place for my stuff other than a garage. Without a job, or any regular means of income, as my small savings slowing drains, I can at least hold onto to this. This craft, this pen to digital paper is a life raft. Maybe it one day could be my means of income, but either way, I feel blessed.
Not ideal circumstances, but, maybe that’s just a matter of perspective. Perhaps this is MY way of becoming a writer. Perhaps the only way. With only pen in hand (well, figuratively I guess) I mean to scratch my way towards happiness. HA!!!! take that mean ol’world …