Monday, May 31, 2010

"Giving in to Peer Pressure," or, "Why I must Blog"

I remember when life was simple. Back then, there were few organized sports. A team consisted of the neighborhood kids gathering in the street for a game of kick-ball. Summer evenings were best spent sitting on the front porch talking to neighbors, drinking root beer floats and dreaming about a future filled with technology. There were no remote controls--the TV channel turner was but a few yards from your seat--or cell phones. A manuscript was written on a typewriter, not a computer. Surfing was when you took your board to the beach and "blogging" was a misspelled word.

The world is different now. Faster. Spell check, email ... have changed the writing industry. And yes, I've been told, it is an industry. No longer is having a talent for writing enough. A writer must be marketable. She must have a web site, facebook page, twitter account, and of course a blog.

While attending the Penn Writers' Conference a few weeks ago, David Pomerico, Assistant Editor at Del Rey Spectra, stressed how important it is for writers to blog. A woman in the audience challenged him. Why is a blog necessary when it takes away time a writer should be working on her current story? and why would an editor or agent shun a writer who didn't blog? This opened up a dialog, which, I might add, Mr. Pomerico seemed to welcome. After the conference, this dialog continued in many Penn Writers' members' blogs. YES, I was that woman. So I sit her today, blogging. Why? Because writing is not just an industry, it is a TOUGH industry. Have I given in to peer pressure? Me? Never. I'm a writer. I write any time, any place, and nobody tells me how.

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