So, check it out. When I started this blog about 3 years ago I did it for one reason: Because I wanted to know if the rest of the parenting world was crazy or I was. I spent a year walking around writing blog posts in my head. I’d write a whole thing while driving to work, get to work and do nothing about it. This went on until I couldn’t stand it anymore. Finally I said “fuck it” and wrote this.
I had about 30 readers. Twenty-nine of them were blood relatives. I promised myself I’d never write out of obligation. I never expected anything beyond having some fun. I never expected anything at all, actually.
But over the past three years, as you guys have come and stuck around and shared my posts, a whole lot of opportunity has come my way from this, and to my endless surprise it looks like I may have a chance to be a real writer.
Alright that’s bullshit. I’m a “real writer” now. What the hell does that even mean? I’ve been writing since I was 9 years old. A lady in church handed me a journal and said “You should write every day.” So I did, because it sounded like a good idea.
Writing became like air to me. I’d vomit across those pages before I went to bed. I kept paper in my car, in my bag, in my backpack. The last pages of my school notebooks were covered in crap poetry and barely legible prose. In high school, I’d drive to the ocean by myself and sit on the beach, smoke cigarettes and drink coffee and write my whole existence across the pages of a journal. I was so deep when I was 16. I’d listen to live Dead on the way to the beach and contemplate life, so by the time I got there I’d be all hopped up on Jerry and angst and waves against fog and salt air. I wrote through college, and I wrote a little after having my first baby, but then alcoholism choked me and I stopped, almost completely, for 7 or 8 years.
I was too dead to create.
When I came alive again, I found you guys.
And here’s what I want to say: I’m going to try to make a living out of this writing thing, and the first thing I’m going to do is start selling ad space on my blog. In the next couple days you’ll see them appear on the sidebar. Tomorrow the “Hire Me” page will change to “Hire Me/Sponsor Me” and there will be info and prices and stuff. My monthly hits (thanks to you) are high enough that I can do this and possibly earn enough to make it worth my while. We live a simple life. I’m not looking for riches. I’m looking for a way out of working my ass off for barely anything so my family can keep eating. I won’t be throwing whatever the fuck on my blog. You won’t have flashing toilet paper ads up in your grill. If it isn’t a service/business I can get behind, you won’t see it on my sidebar. That’s a promise.
I’m also considering selling merchandise. I’m thinking mesh caps with the mohawk kid logo. I’m thinking shirts that say “Try not to be a dick.” Maybe “Mothers united in the fight against helpful parenting advice.” Maybe some of those crazy ass bumper stickers I made.
It’s not deep. It’s like: “Hi. I need money. Buy a fucking t-shirt.”
Is this selling out? Probably. Not very “renegade,” right?
Yeah, well, if trying to make a living from something that arose organically from my own work so I can spend more time with my family and pursue the art that pretty much defines me makes me a “sell-out,” then I’m a motherfucking sell-out.
I want to write books. I want to make a living writing books. I can’t do that if I’m killing myself working at outside jobs and raising kids (which I’m doing now), so I’m going to try to open up some time and space through this blog. There just isn’t time to work and have kids and write big shit. I need a room of my own. I get you, Ms. Woolf.
Who knows? It might actually work.
Incidentally, part of this is your fault. You keep asking me to write a book. You keep telling me you’ll read it. And you’ve given me fire, and hope, and a sense of direction. It’s weird to figure out what you’re supposed to be doing via accident.
That’s how I know it’s real, I guess, because I didn’t set out to “be an artist” (although my personal goal in life is to get on NPR and be the one writer in the history of mankind to NOT SAY PROFOUND SHIT).
I set out to find, and connect, and do what felt right. I did what I needed to do because there was no other choice. I would have gone insane had I not started writing this thing. It was like a rabid dog scratching at my brain. Eww. Imagery.
The results have been more than I ever imagined, and I’d be a motherfucking fool to not see how deep this rabbit hole goes.
And I’d rather be a sell-out than a fool.
At least I think I would.
Anyway thank you. I just wanted to let you know, and thank you, again, for all of it.
P.S. I really, really want your feedback on all this. Please share your thoughts, ideas, opinions. I mean it. I will use the info to guide this whole thing. Unless you tell me I’m a sell-out, in which case I’ll just respond “Yeah. Duh. We’ve been over that.”