Love Self

100 Posts! Thanks for Reading!

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This post is a dedication to my readers. It is my one hundredth posting! I wanted to thank you for taking time out of your busy day to read my blog. I also wanted to celebrate because this is a milestone for me. To me, there is something special about 100. Perhaps, it is because of the times I thought about quitting along the way. If you look back to the dates of my blog posts, you will notice they are scattered everywhere, dating back to nearly two years ago. It wasn’t until recently that I started posting regularly.

Before I ever had the idea of starting a blog, I had a sincere desire to mentor. My teenage brother and sister, half my age, were entering a time in their life when things were going to drastically change as they journeyed into adulthood. I earnestly wanted to help them avoid some of the mistakes I made. Due to my seventy to eighty hour a week schedules, I missed a great deal of them growing up since I only visited on the weekend. I failed to develop a better relationship with them and teach them from early on. By the time I realized they were nearly grown up, I tried to give them a crash course in adulthood around the time they were 16 years old. All my efforts fell short because it was too late. Life for each of them took its course; not the way I hoped it would. I may never know whether what I tried to teach had an impact or not.

As a student of life, I enjoy personal growth. For years, I studied many topics and sought a better life. I remember once taking an English Literature class and enjoyed the fictional side to storytelling. One summer I attended a local writer’s conference where I got a chance to dive into the world of fiction writing. I started writing various kinds of fictional stories about five years ago. The issue was, I never finished a single book. I couldn’t tell you how many I started though! It wasn’t until last year that I finally focused on one story, and the book is now in the final stage of publishing.

However, along the way, I still had a desire to share what I was learning about life. Whether it was true or not, it felt like my siblings did not care for my advice. The thought crossed my mind, that maybe somewhere there was a person who might appreciate words of encouragement, instruction, or whatever was offered. Blogging was mainstream by then and I decided to try it. In the beginning, I struggled with what to share. During this same time period, I got actively involved in my church and sought to make a difference in people’s lives. Since I had an insatiable desire for learning and a passion for writing, I wondered whether something was there or not. I wrote a couple posts and received three or four comments that totally convinced me something was there. It made me even think that maybe there was something in this long term for me, perhaps to author some books. This started the conflict about what to post and what to save for a book. Eventually, I realized the only reason for the conflict was because of self-interest.

I had to go back to the beginning and remember why it was I was writing in the first place. It was not for riches, although I won’t turn them down if they ever come one day! God did something so special and so amazing for me, somehow, I knew I had to share with others some form of goodness. Writing serves as an outlet, a means for allowing me to share what is on my heart. After getting involved in more people’s lives, I saw their struggles and of course, I’ve had my own. In the two years since, I never again received comments like those few in the beginning. Had I not gotten those early on, I probably would have quit.

There is an ugly side to being an author that I never knew until I became one. It is sometimes a struggle to create content and even more of a struggle to give it my best every time. Before I read hundreds of books but thought nothing of it. What I never realized until I started writing was how much authors struggle to deliver to readers the very best they have to give. It involves research, writing, rewriting, writing and throwing away what you have written numerous times. Even a single post can take as much as two to three hours. It may not seem like it but expending this much effort can be tiring. To make matters worse, from outward appearances my efforts seem futile. It wasn’t until recently it occurred to me that I was not actually in it for the money. Next month will be two years of writing and I haven’t received a dime. Including fictional writing, I’ve written hundreds of hours with no pay whatsoever.

This has been financially, by far, the worst paying thing I could have ever done with my time! But I know its true that lives change every day and often do so in the smallest of turns in the right direction. I decided long ago, if I can be a part of that for other people, then I’m in! I believe even the slightest possibility exists that someone out there may stumble upon one of my writings and it be exactly what they needed to read, at the exact moment they needed to read it. I even find it humorous that sometimes that person is me. Through the ups and downs of life, we are all in this thing together. Let’s make the best of it!

Thanks again, blessings!

Jeff

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