Hello, people of the internet!
I have mentioned previously on this blog that creating a blog is one of the best decisions I ever made. I haven’t even been blogging for a year yet and I know for definite that I’ll continue to blog for as long as I can.
But what I haven’t posted yet on my blog was why I started to blog in the first place.
And I think it’s about time I did.
It started at university when I first met Sarah from The Little Contemporary Corner. This was the first blog I read on a regular basis and was my first look into the blogging world. At the time, it was something I was interested in doing, but I was very shy to actually start a blog myself – I struggled, and still do, with anxiety and if I began to even think about starting one, a wave of negative thoughts deterred me from the whole idea. It was the worst thing I could possible do to myself. As a creative person, it was important for me to at least show someone my writing, but I didn’t always do it. It was the hardest thing for me to do, especially since I was doing a creative writing course at university so I had to do it to improve. Yet I was too scared to prove my negative thoughts correct. That no one would be interested. That no one cared. That because there were other people writing, my writing as well as my thoughts and opinions were irrelevant.
So I shyed away and only showed my work when I had no other choice.
My time at university was a real eye-opener. The response I received proved I had potential as a writer and, if I continued to write, improve and step out of my comfort zone, then I would be one at some point.
However, my time after university was a difficult time for me.
My confidence after my dissertation was none existent. I truly believed I failed. Because of this, I didn’t apply for a Master’s degree despite it being something I wanted to do. So when I found out I passed, it was too late to start one in September.
I tried to see if I could start a Creative Writing Master’s degree later on in the academic year. I went in to see tutors, even wrote a proposal.
In November 2016, I was told there were no places for me. The wave of negative thoughts swallowed me up and I was drowning in my own head. I waited too late to apply for a Master’s. I was so angry at myself that I was trapped with only my negative thoughts for company. My anxiety was at its worst.
I stopped writing. It reminded me of what I failed to do and that I had a whole year of uncertainty. Up to that point, I always had a plan and I knew what I was doing. But now? I was no longer in education. I didn’t have a job. Luckily I had a volunteer job in a museum, so I won’t say I was in the worst position, but for me, it was a difficult time emotionally.
But I needed to write. Being creative made me focus, content and happy with what I created. So, in November, I decided on this: whilst applying for jobs, I will write. What I needed was something to build and work on before I began to write stories again.
So I contacted Sarah on how to start a blog.
And I haven’t looked back since.
Job hunting has been up and down, but I luckily got myself a casual job in administration. I still have a long way to go, but along with blogging, my anxiety has eased up. For me, the fact I have gotten this far in blogging, met some lovely bloggers online and read their equally lovely blogs, even began writing short stories again with the short story challenges on Charlotte’s Wonderfully Bookish blog, has eased my anxiety so much that I can focus again. I still have problems, but blogging has helped me that it doesn’t control me.
I have briefly mentioned my anxiety on my blog, but not in as much detail as this. It’s an important subject I wanted to talk about, especially how blogging has helped me! I know that blogging may not help everyone else’s anxiety as everyone is different and so they deal with anxiety in a way that works for them, but I wanted to show my appreciation somehow.
The response I’ve been given has been so uplifting since it has proven my negative thoughts wrong. I have been introduced to lovely people, started going to book signings (I have even decided to go to YALC at some point, perhaps next year? Which is a big step for me), and showed off my creative writing! I have learnt not to stress myself out when it comes to blogging since it is meant to be fun and when I follow that rule, it’s one of the very few things I don’t stress about!
All I regret is that I didn’t start blogging sooner! But regardless of that, I am blogging and will continue to blog for a long time.
Thank you for reading!