I wanted to wait until my official blog birthday month to write this post. But it’s been brewing inside of me for awhile and so much of its message came to life today.
I woke up this morning at 7 a.m. excited because I planned to begin promoting “Wine, Writing, Women and Wisdom: Celebrating Two Years of Twenties Unscripted.” It usually takes Jesus, Mary and Joseph for me to wake up early in anticipation of anything, but this was big enough. I started blowing up social media shortly after I got up with the flyer my graphic designer did a kickass job on.
Morgan and I haven’t known each other for a long time. We haven’t actually ever met in-person. But, like most of the women who support my blog, she emerged from an unexpected place and has become an important creative partner. Her words came at a much-needed time this afternoon and there weren’t enough characters in a tweet for me to let her know how much I appreciated what she said. She shows support with a capital S and if there is anything I have learned over the past few years, it is that capital S support is extremely rare. Especially in the blogging community.
To people outside of the blogging world, the amount of public praise and love we show our fellow bloggers may seem excessive. Or, so I’ve been told. It comes across as dick-riding or ass-kissing or any other term people have conjured up. But, for those of us who pen our stories online day after day or search for interesting locales to shoot our photos, for those of us who have taken the plunge into this really strange and beautiful world of online exposure, we know that there are never enough words to show someone your love. I can’t retweet or quote Jessica Schiffer enough to show her how much her words have made me pause, reflect and appreciate the writing that she offers the world. Now take that sentence and apply it to so many of the other writers I adore. Erica. Yetti. GG. And, the list goes on.
It’s unfortunate that we exist in a world where many people think praise needs to be watered down with sarcasm. People hoard their authentic support. They place a quota on their compliments before they think it’s “too creepy”. God forbid they actually retweet something you said or outright compliment something you did. Perhaps what those people fail to understand is that lifting someone else up never, ever lessens you. If anything, it elevates you. There are so many people who show support with a lowercase s–they believe their support should be assumed because they gave you a page view for the day. And, yes, support with a lowercase s helps build the numbers. That support still means something. But, I don’t think love should ever just be assumed. It has to be shown.
And, that support has to be shown because what we do as writers, as artists, as creative people, is nothing short of an act of war. It is tough and it is soul-sucking and it requires more energy than we ever thought we had. It requires commitment beyond what we ever anticipated. It requires WORK, all caps required. In the words of Jay-Z, it ain’t for everybody. You think you’re reading 500 words and continuing on with your day, but we poured our souls and ourselves into that shit. We thought about it. We mulled it over. We jotted sentences down on napkins. We deleted phrases that we didn’t like. We fought to offer you something meaningful. And, more often than not, it feels as though we’re being met with deafening radio silence. No, we don’t do it for the accolades, but my God, does the encouragement helps. It helps to know that someone hears us, understands us, connects to what the fuck we are trying to say. It helps more than words can say.
My love language has always been words of affirmation. Words matter and there isn’t a soul on this planet who can tell me any different. Words are how I most openly receive and understand other people’s love and support. Some people want you to show it. Some people want you to say it. I believe you show it by saying it.