Thursday, June 02, 2011

Wanting to Do Something Not Being Done - Writing as a Career

The large majority of what's on this blog is around the work and words of others... which makes sense given that my love of writing is a dual notion around both the act of writing and appreciation of great work come across.

To this point, the blog tag "writing" has been utilized on posts around the process of writing, whether that process be my own ruminations or the concept of writing as written on by others. The majority of posts with said tag link to and are about thoughts other than my own, but I do like to throw in personal ramblings occasionally.


On this whole personal ramblings subject, an idea that's been kicking around in the head lately is around the concept of wanting to do something not being done. In my case it's wanting to work in writing and not doing it yet, but (to probably use the phrase wrong, but still in a pithy way) everybody has their own private Idaho.

While I may not be a working (i.e. paid) writer or even working in writing (yet), two things that give solace are (1) the idea of working towards something and (2) association.

The manifestation of my concept around working towards something isn't always easy, but is obvious. I want to work in writing... so I write.

It's enjoyable writing this blog and provides a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction when I write something with meaning (and link to something with gravitas), but there's also a portfolio being built brick by brick (totally different than Step by Step by NKOTB). Eventually and somehow the opportunity to transition to doing my aforementioned thing not being done will present itself, and the portfolio of work will be there... and by there I mean, here.

In terms of association, I find tremendous value in reading great writing, but also in reading others who enjoy great writing. The best example of this comes out of the Son of a Bold Venture blog (which I try, perhaps unsuccessfully, to not mention too much) by Esquire writer Chris Jones. There's great content from Jones around the writing process, but also some pretty fascinating comments made by others.

Tagged onto the post LAST CALL AT ELAINE'S, ft. KEVIN VAN VALKENBURG was a comment from a reader, Scott Warden. I don't know the guy at all, but from an association perspective, it feels good to read something I feel as well...

From Mr. Warden about the words from Kevin Van Valkenburg...

"This might sound a little too kiss-assy (just pretend that's a word, folks, and move along), but on a smaller scale, the way Kevin felt that night is how I feel when I read this blog. We get to chat up Chris and share the comments section with Scott Raab, Gene Weingarten, Mr. Charlie Pierce, etc. For most of us, it's the closest we're going to come to rubbing elbows with legends. Really, it's as good as it gets for those of us not on an esteemed masthead.

Twelve years ago or so, when I was younger, hungrier, I e-mailed a handful of my favorite writers, wanting to pick their brains. As a huge fan of The Sporting News growing up, I was thrilled when Dave Kindred e-mailed me back. His advice was great, but the thrill was more "Holy shit, Dave Kindred now knows my name!"

It's the same thrill I get with this place, this bastion of words and truths."

So, I may not be where I want to yet, but gonna take solace in working towards the goal and through that work, already associating with great writing and others of like mind about great writing.