This year has gone fantastic so far, with the usual blips of course.
I’ve settled into a brand-new morning workout routine, which I’m going to share soon in a video. I’ve written a lot of essays for school that I’m quite proud of, which I’ll be sharing as well. I’ve gone out with friends a lot and taken lots of sweet photos which I’d like to post here too. I’ve read more books in the first 3 months of a year than I ever have, and I think I’ll review some of them at some point. I’ve cooked my own food a lot (and have even been packing my own lunches this semester), and it would probably be cool to share some of my go-to recipes. I’ve learned a lot about myself and my values, and that would also make a nice post at some point.
Basically, I’ve done lots of things and haven’t told you about them.
I often tell “sharing-averse” friends that I enjoy sharing because it’s not about the likes and the views for me as it is about keeping all my favourite photos and creative products in one place. They just happen to be public because it lets me feel like I’m actually doing something with them. I also tell them that my photos start conversations. And that taking photos comes naturally to me, so it doesn’t take up a lot of time anyway. Maybe it’s my artist eye that sees something pretty and wants to preserve it for later enjoyment or analysis. Plus, I’ve been doing it for a long time. Thanks to Instagram, posting those up takes a quick tap and it’s done, so yes, bottom line: it’s easy and I enjoy doing it.
This blog has also been an Instagram album of sorts, too. When I was little, I stored my writing and art on here. Then, I wrote how-to and advice posts, pretending they were for my future self to read (which I never actually do, though I really should – some of my old posts are probably super relevant but forgotten epiphanies) and delighting when the occasional wandering stranger happened upon them and liked them. There was no pressure, I just put things up.
But damn. Sharing is hard now that I know a lot of people actually read and interact with the things I post. I’m so excited and overwhelmed that I freeze. There’s tons of studies about how to edit your photos to look more professional, what time to post so that people want to read them, how to properly title posts, how to edit videos so they capture and keep your attention.
But I’ve forgotten one important thing: this isn’t about you, it’s about me.
Heck, isn’t that a narcissistic thing to say. Let me explain.
I care a lot about you. This blog, my YouTube channel, my Instagram was started because I want to reach more people with my creative ideas. I think they can actually inspire others, and it makes me happy to know that I’ve left a little mark that way.
But this isn’t just a business concept, it’s my life. I learn a lot when I work on articulating my ideas to share with you. I also learn a lot when I think about things enough to be able to write about them in a coherent blog post. I also feel happy talking with you and hearing about your own ideas. And finally, an undiagnosed and perhaps slightly obsessive part of me likes having all my creative content in one place so that at some point I (or some poor sod writing the biography of the Ioana-specimen in a couple hundred years) can access it later.
Sharing things that are perfectly up to standard isn’t easy, and it’s a lot of work. And there’s a lot of pressure to do it when there’s a lot of people watching. But is it really worth spending days to produce something that I could alternatively spend a few hours on, only to make it a little prettier for you to enjoy? I don’t think so. I need to make this easy for me. And ultimately, that will be better for you too because you’ll get to see more cool content. Win-win!
It’s impossible to perceive some new, inconceivable future because we simply don’t know what we don’t know. All we can do is look back at what we know has happened so far, and in my case, I’ve kept growing. I won’t suddenly stop growing and run out of things to talk about. So probably the biggest, best piece of advice I can give myself (since we’re giving out advice now it seems) is to just write without comparing it in quality with what potential I might have in the future for content that hasn’t even been produced yet. Whether it’s the best thing I could envision making up to this point in my life, or the best thing I could make at the moment, it WILL do the topic justice because it will EXIST. Nothing more is needed.
I think this ties into my whole thing with pleasing everyone, too. I can’t please everyone so I should stop even trying. I’ve got to do ME, and if people like that, then AWESOME! If not, oh well.
I think this also ties into my whole problem with decisions. I want to make sure I make the RIGHT decision all the time, so I weigh the pros and cons, assess how they fit into my values and then tentatively step forward. But something I’ve been working on it just making MY decision and sticking to it. Whether it’s right or wrong, it’s MINE and no one can tell me otherwise.
Yes, that. Camp NaNoWriMo is coming up, which if you don’t know, is an awesome virtual gathering of writers that sit down and attempt to write an entire novel (or any project) in one month. The real deal happens in November (hence National Novel Writing Month, NaNoWriMo for short), which is when the goal is fixed: 50,000 words. But camp happens in April and June and you can pick your own goal and are assigned to cabins and wake up in the wee hours of the morning when everyone else is asleep, put on your fuzzy socks, brew some tea, and write knowing that there’s millions of other writers getting down and dirty with ya. Run-on sentences for the win.
I started this back when I was 12 or 13, and have attempted NaNo and Camp NaNo every now and then. I have fond memories of the mornings-and-fuzzy-socks thing. But for the past few years, I’ve somewhat neglected my writerly dream. So this year, I’m going for it again!
I’ve got two goals, and it’s kind of scary setting two because for some reason those kind of complex goals have a tendency to defy all the general laws of physics and decrease the likelihood of either one happening at all by like 90% but whatever.
- Write short stories. I used to do this a lot and I think it was really fun. I’d like to produce a couple of short or longer-ish stories and publish them on here throughout the month.
- Write more blog posts (or film videos). This blog and YouTube channel really needs more care. I’d like to stop being perfect and create content more regularly, based on whatever I’m thinking or doing at the moment.
So that’s that! This post is already a million miles long so I think I’ll stop there. Heck, if you’ve read this far you’re an OG (original gangster) and I’m grateful. If you’ve skimmed this far, then that’s great too! You can expect more blogger-type, journal-entry posts like this in the future, and I guess if the title peaks your interest then you’ll read it and that’s that. Maybe I’ll even make the titles of this blog series all-lowercase because… art. That poor biographer I mentioned earlier might study it in their english class.
Perfection, begone! Humanity, embraced.