Because pictures aren’t enough.
That’s the short answer.
I live in a house full of pictures and mementos and scrapbooks, and should my humble abode ever go up on flames or find itself in the path of a hurricane, the children and I will grab as many albums as we can before we make our departure.
But as wonderful as the pictures are that fill these rooms and warm my heart – there’s my grandparents’ engagement photo, for example, and a quick snap of a much tinier version of my son jumping off the living room ottoman and getting some air — these pictures only tell one moment of the story.
And I do so love stories.
I write because I want to remember what everybody said and how we all felt. What we ate and wore and listened to. What we said before it happened. What we said after.
I write because my life – and certainly my time with my children – has moved fast and I want to get it all down. I don’t want to waste a minute of it.
I write because sometimes the only good thing you can get out of an experience is the story itself – it’s that hand squeezed lemonade we’re so frequently advised to create.
Sometimes I don’t even understand what has happened until I have written about it.
And sometimes I don’t even know what I am going to write until I sit down and actually write.
In February 2012, I started this blog as a New Year’s promise to myself. I thought it would be fun to have a blog. Although I had worked as a journalist all through my 20s, I had written only a handful of essays. I felt like I had a few things to say, but I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do with them.
So I started blogging. Since that time, amazing things have happened. My writing has appeared in the Baltimore Sun and on its web page, as well as in the Christian Science Monitor and a journal based in Chicago, called Hektoen International.
I won two prizes for my short stories.
I have gotten a lot of great feedback from readers – and not just my godmother, who I learned in a year-end review of site stats is my most dedicated commenter. (An unstoppable reader and a supporter to all in her life, so no surprise there.) What equally excites me though is when people I don’t know read my work and recommend it.
Apparently I have some readers in the Philippines, for example.
Even more fun, a few friends have begun their own blogs in the past year. They said they were inspired by me. Thank you! That means a lot. Let’s keep the writing going. Let’s fill the world with our stories and give folks good things to read, shall we?
So far, the most popular posts I have written have been:
1) Rowhouse about these quirky homes we Baltimore folks live in;
2) Say yes about a cross-country trip to Colorado with my college roommate and her two dogs.
The last one, in particular, is a favorite of mine. After a week of being on the road, I wrote it in about 20 minutes. I think it must have been percolating in my mind the whole time.
And now this essay, which is my 52nd. Which means I have managed to write a year’s worth of posts – not quite in one year’s time, but close enough to say happy anniversary to CharmCityWriter.
And thank you for reading!
Please sign up to follow me, if you haven’t already. Another year of writing awaits – who knows what adventures will fill this space, what life events will happen that I must record?
Dear reader, I can’t wait to tell you all about it.