The Weary Writer Returns To His Blog

Ladyclever.com

Ladyclever.com

So here we are in the midst of November—better known as National Novel Writing Month—or as some writers like to affectionately call it, http://nanowrimo.org/. Not me of course, I have yet to master the art of speaking URL fluently.

Grammarly.com

Grammarly.com

Yet, there may still be other writers out there who no longer speak of the challenge with love and affection. These might be writers who now sense that feverishly trying to produce a 50,000 word novel by 11:59 on Tuesday November 30th, may be a challenge unworthy of real affection.

However, maybe some of them are excelling in producing language that would make a sailor blush. Nah!

But, some of these fine folks may be stressing out over having to finish their unfinished novel on time at the expense of sleep, a Thanksgiving family dinner, and an existing income called… a job. And it’s all in the name of imagination, creativity, and maybe in some cases… wishful financial independence.

And yet, I wish I could claim to be counted among these wretched writers and their perceived folly to produce that 50,000 word novel in one months time. Why you ask?

Well, you may have noticed—those of you who frequent this weird, wild, and wacky blog of mine, better known as the poor unfortunate souls called my followers who have ACCIDENTALLY been sucked into this swirling vortex of a black hole in the blogging world—that there has been a void here since Halloween.

Not because I chose to attempt the 50,000 word masterpiece. Oh no, I truly wished I had. No, but because I had to go out of town and forage for real money. Oddly enough, for some strange reason that didn’t include me making money by writing in my blog. Which, as you may know, has still failed to put me on the Forbes 500 list.

But hey, I’m back from Los Angeles now and with a nasty head cold to prove it, which has left me in a fog. This has left me consuming large quantities of chicken noodle soup, NyQuil, and forcing my wife into singing to me, “Soft Kitty, Warm Kitty ” all the while rubbing Vick’s vapor Rub on my chest. This in an effort to help me recover so that I might rejoin the human race.

Viralfactory.com

Viralfactory.com

Just ask, Sandi, or is it, Sarah, and Mike, or is it, George? She/they vaguely know all about it.

I suspect the cold was courtesy of the airlines and their lovely recycled air. But, I’m having little problem trying to prove that. So that big lawsuit I was planning to file against them? I guess it’s going to have to wait—at least until there’s a cure for the common cold.

I realize this revelation about my recent whereabouts comes as little more than back page news to the John Grisham’s and Mary Higgins Clark’s of the larger narcissistic blogging community—usually located somewhere near the center of the WordPress hurricane of attention.

You know, where Freshly Pressed is located.

But, that’s no doubt due to they’re being too self-absorbed with their own UNPAID writing on their own blogs—unlike you kind folks, who at least take time out of your busy schedule to read mine, and other friends blogs. Makes you wonder what compels those pompous writing windbags to ignore the rest of us, doesn’t it?

This could not possibly be because they erroneously believe that their own blogs feature superior writing to that of our own, surely not. Otherwise, they’d be admitting that they see us as less than serious writers, which would explain why they never come to visit our blogs.

funny-bathroom-artNaturally, such diluted reasoning would only lend itself to the idea, that they couldn’t possibly be bothered with looking at our blogs, as nothing more than exploits consisting of grocery list, love notes to our soul mates, and scribblers of fine graffiti on inner bathroom stalls.

Oh come on, where else would I write?

Anyway, it’s nice to be missed, and I’ve missed you all too. That’s why I’ve been slowly catching up on what you’ve all wrote, and not because of some failed attempt at writing a 50,000 page novel, or desperately trying to compose a Freshly Pressed Post because I see you as unworthy writers of my (currently) comatose attention.

No, I’ve just been sick and tired of having to go earn money, that’s all. A necessary evil, to be sure.

New WordPress Badge!

badge

WordPress presented myself and a few other good folks—on April Fools of all days—with a newly awarded badge! Okay, so I received the email notification on Monday, still the irony of this is not lost on me.

I am greatly honored to be among the very first writer’s ever to receive this award (I really am) however, I find myself oddly excited, and yet somewhat insulted all at the same time.

On Monday I looked in my email; found a notification from WordPress.

You can probably imagine the thrill I experienced receiving this notification since so few of us have ever been Freshly Pressed. I figured WordPress must be considering a recent post of mine for a “Freshly Pressed Badge”—Yes I know, I must be on drugs.

Generally I’m not into awards (honored though I may be to have been nominated for a few of them), because they usually require a little more time and effort on top of my semi-regular posting and reading.

But, the idea of receiving a “Freshly Pressed Badge” where all the additional time and effort would not be required, did appeal to me.

No such luck though.

The email began with the formal greeting and introduction, stating: “As you probably know, we at WordPress are always scouring the various different posts published daily by bloggers hoping to inspire, instruct, or otherwise amuse the many readers on WordPress blogs.”

I’m thinking to myself, “This is starting to sound pretty good—Freshly Pressed at last!”

Trying to avoid the overwhelming urge to jump up and down with joy, I continued reading their notification…

“On occasion we find a post that catches one of our editors attention and then we award the blogger a Freshly Pressed Badge for their fine effort.” I’m all a glow, you’ll not wipe this smile off my face.

The  notification continued, “However, you may not realize that we have been in the process of developing a new badge. This badge is designed with the intent of motivating blogger’s who would like to someday be Freshly Pressed, but who have not yet received the award.” Oh oh.

The feeling of just having been rejected for a “Freshly Pressed Badge” nearly caused me to slip into a coma of mass depression.

The email then concluded by saying…

“We find your humor blog ‘In My Cluttered Attic’ to be a nice diversion for our readers and are pleased to let you know, that you and the other recipients will receive the new ‘Acknowledged By WordPress Badge’ sometime on Wednesday. Congratulations!”

As it turns out that would be sometime today—April Fools Day.

Not to sound less than grateful for the award (as I appreciate it), but for some reason I can’t shake the feeling that I’ve received the new “Freshly Fooled Badge” instead?

Integrity Blogging—Well Sort Of

capturing followers

This originally was to be a blog committed to one purpose and one purpose only … making money. But after a HUGE reality check (that’s a check without money) I have since had to assign a reluctantly different goal to my blog—laughter?

As with MOST of us who blog for a living, we soon discover that the two words living and blog don’t really belong together in the same sentence. I just had another epiphany … my blog will not only be working without dollars now, but also with an economy of words—although that will no doubt be a plus for all of you.

Still, my blog needn’t be short-changed.

Verbose as I am, less is going to have to be more. I also wanted to be original, but I soon discovered originality had already been tried. In point of fact; being the SAME has even been done—to death!

And then there was my concern over what kind of content would be in my blog. Trying to bring a unique and fresh approach to a blog can be like trying to bring an extraordinary, yet contemporary advance to dealing with sewage. Could it be done?

Who cares—I just want to do a blog. But, as you can see, the reasons for doing a blog are shrinking by the paragraph.

Yikes, this means my blog will not include making money, originality or sameness, say nothing of fame without my name—And I think I’ll hold out for fame with my name thank you very much.

techno challengeAlso, did I mention that I’m technologically challenged? If I did … then that was the end of the accomplishment part of this post. Mastering anything when it comes to WordPress is going to be a distant SECOND to navigating the computer for me.

Translation?

If this was a marathon … me navigating WordPress probably hit a wall several miles back and is seeking the “Geek Squad” for assistance. I’ll finish the race but in years, not hours. Likely sprawled out on a stretcher—barely cognizant of the internet.

But I don’t care, I still have my integrity … you’ll not see me go chasing after followers by attaching some award to my site just to get noticed. When I read someones blog and like it, I’m going to follow them. And if they check my blog and seem to like it … I’ll lock the doors and keep em as my followers.

I’ll earn my awards the old fashion way—by sending an enormous cash advance to FRESHLY PRESSEDfreshly pressed (Gee its been awhile—hope they got the check).

Come on now, you have to confess, you and I do a blog because we like to write. That and a private journal or diary comes without a publish button.

Admit it, the idea of creating our own site can be intoxicating because we get to use our (okay … WordPress’) imagination.

And let’s face it, our own blog has not only intrinsic value, but also offers an eclectic and idiosyncratic written work which can entreat many or few, but ostensibly—SOMEONE. Forget the stats, enjoy those followers who discover you by accident—as long as Judas is not among them.

And get this. The Free Dictionary by Farlex, defines an author by saying, “To write or be the author of (a published text)”—so hey, we’re all published authors to boot. Take that big name publishers who are responsible for my ever growing stack of rejection slips!

Yeah alright, I’ll say it, “Show me the money!”money

I know, I know Cuba Gooding Jr. said it in Jerry Maguire—but I think it sounds better when you read it in my blog instead of hearing it in that movie.

Where Is The Good Greatsby?

Paul JohnsonOh where are you Paul Johnson? If you read the backs of milk cartons, study bulletin boards at your local post office, or are a fan of missing person reports on the news then you no doubt are aware that, “The Good Greatsby” has vanished.

My idol is missing. We all need our heroes and I am sure that if you’ve ever read a post from Paul Johnson, then you like myself are now frantic with worry. At this point I am almost out of fingernails.

Getting through a week is hard enough without having to do so by not having our good-humor man to guide me to the weekend. The tears shed by me alone have not been able to keep the drought here in California in check, but I like to think so.

Whenever a post would arrive from “The Good Greatsby” I would deny myself until Friday to eagerly devour the content. I would reason there’s no better way to start a magnificent weekend. Fool that was, I always assumed Greatsby would be there for me.

Since his disappearance, though, I have had to rely on reruns of previous post to get me through this horrible ordeal. Since having read “Hello my name is Intern” whereby Paul was asking for an assistant, there has been nothing. Leaving me to ask, “Did he find one, and if so, how bad must that assistant truly be?”

Maybe Paul became offended by not getting Freshly Pressed or Freshly Pegged as often as he would have liked. I find this highly unlikely since someone like Mr. Johnson probably prefers money to such adulation.

I could, of course, read other excellent blogs like “Ben’s Bitter Blog” where I have learned that it still rains in Seattle, fostering all kinds of negativity. Perhaps I could read “She’s a Maineiac” where I’ve learned Maine is conducive to better writing, or even continue reading “Athingirl.com” where I love reading Susannah’s insights into all things New York.

However, it has been nearly eight months since that last post by “The Good Greasby.” In fact, this coming February 22nd will mark the fourth anniversary of the blog that I’ve held up as an example of satirical excellence. That is, unless of course, you have a humor blog like myself, in which case, you’re probably self-absorbed.

But I don’t want to be that into myself, at least not at the expense of a blog that I had come to  begrudgingly accept as better than that of my own, after all none of us are “The Good Greatsby.”

the good greatsbyLet us face facts.

We will never have a smoking jacket—not one we would ever pay for anyway. Nor do we wear black-rimmed glasses—at least, not publicly—for fear of being laughed at… although that never seemed to bother Paul. And none of us write for the “Huffington Post”—not that we’d have an aversion to getting paid to write for them.

It is everything I can do just to crowd out the horrible thoughts of what might have happened to him.

Did we lose gravity, thereby forcing Paul to write for some great alien civilization on another planet out in the vast universe.

Was he shanghaied? But I have since come to doubt that scenario, as Paul and family already live in Shanghai, China, so what would be the point.

Or did he go all Edward Snowden on us, possibly stealing secret documents from WordPress.com, thus forcing him to go rogue.

All I do know is, I now sit in front of the warm glow of my computer screen hours at a time, waiting for a post. Or until my wife puts a pillow under my head and wheels me, swivel chair and all, into the bedroom.

If you or anyone does know what became of “The Good Greatsby”—alias Paul Johnson—please contact us…uh… me. That, or you can contact me personally here, “In My Cluttered Attic” so that I can selfishly read his post—before the rest of you do.