The first thing I did after accepting my first non-mommyblogging-related job in a bajillion years was rush to Target for pens and file folders. The second thing I did was glare at my husband for laughing at me. And my pens and file folders. I did realize I would still be working on a computer, right? With a keyboard? Just like I've been doing for a bajillion years in a happy, paperless worky bubble?
I can't really explain it. But if you get me anywhere near anything that remotely resembles Actual Office Work, I am completely seized with the need to scribble things down on Actual Paper. I require Post-Its and notepads and file tabs and a pen to write with and one to chew on. I want to print things out and stare at them and cover them in proofreading marks and bullet points and chicken-scratch notes to myself.
I ask myself questions a lot. Category aggregation slider at top? Slideshows? Talking clients? News items round-up SUSTAINABLE? PLAGIARISM??
I stare at these half-formed questions later and am basically like, "Bitch, the hell if I know." Sometimes I answer myself with more scribbles: WHAT ARE YOU EVEN TALKING ABOUT??????
The good news is that the job is going...uh, good. Well. Excellent, even. I am getting the shit out of shit done, yo, and people seem to like me.
And none of them read my blog.
I mean, they know OF IT, and understand that I am a blogger who knows about blogs because I blog and I blog far and wide and empire-like, but I am 99% confident that nobody I interact with on a daily basis has ever read a single post about my boobs. Nobody knows about my love for personifying deodorants or the time I mistook a fruit sticker for a grave bodily injury or that I am sometimes just a giant walking sack of neuroses and fail.
At least a couple times a week, I get emails from new or hopeful bloggers, asking for advice about ads and sponsorships and wanting to know how long it took before I started making money blogging. I try my very best to answer the majority of these (though I know I have a backlog of them in my inbox right now I AM SORRY), but I always...cringe when I write my response because I know it's probably not what anybody wants to hear.
It took years. It took a little bit of luck and a lot of good timing and many, many months of posting to the sound of crickets day after day. It took writing because I loved to write and not because I was hellbent on a book deal (HA!) or quitting my day job, because that just didn't happen back then. But it took years, not weeks or months, and it also involved a lot of side gigs -- some good, some not -- and a lot of stress and networking and adapting and people writing shit about you and a lot of lessons in self-awareness and boundaries learned the hard way.
Would I do it all over again? Abso-fucking-lutely. I mean, Jesus. I love my job, I love my life, I love you guys. All of you.
(Well, except for that one person I met in real life several years ago and thought maybe I could be friends with, and then later randomly discovered she was relaying everything I said and did and wore to a message board comprised of people who hated me, like what the fuck, I sometimes wear yoga pants and have visible roots, ZOMG IT'S ALMOST LIKE BLOGGERS ARE REGULAR PEOPLE OR SOME SHIT.)
(I should delete that. It's petty. Eh, I'll leave it for now and delete it before I publish. If I forget it's probably because I DIDN'T WRITE IT DOWN.)
(Delete?????? You over-sensitive baby?????? Brand dilution synergy????????????)
Whatever, I still can't quit you, Internet.
But I didn't realize how badly I needed...well, not a break from blogging about myself, because look! Here I am! Still blogging about myself! But...something different. Something where my day revolves around something besides a breakneck pace of writing deadlines, where there's no pressure to be FUNNY! Something that doesn't involve me mining my life and experiences and OH MY GOD, something besides kids kids babies diapers sleep boobs kids.
But I did. Did I ever.
(I also didn't realize how badly I needed to bust out my super-old reading glasses that I used to wear to combat eye strain and maaaaybe also to look older and more responsible at work.)
(Needless to say, I'm no longer concerned about that second part. Yikes.)