The only writing worth doing comes from some compelling need to say something regardless of who hears it. For me at least, the act of writing offers the possibility of organizing random thoughts to give clarity, shape and meaning to the daily jumble of experience. If some poetic flavor is added to the cooking of raw thinking, so much the better.
I have written articles that have never been published, kept journals for some 44 years now that no one else reads, have whole books floating around in my head, but at the end of the day, the most satisfying writing is that which is shared. The eight books I’ve published, the scores of articles that made it into magazines and six years of this blog. I was quite happy to have an average of 100 or so reads a day, was surprised and skeptical (bots?) when that spiked to some 500 a day for the past year or so, but secretly pleased that perhaps close to that many people were reading, enjoying, feeling affirmed, feeling challenged, feeling interested in the strange twists and turns of my thinking made public.
But this weekend, there was a sudden drop to 20 or so and in the past five days, it has run between 6 and 40. What’s going on? Was it something I said? Did all those people suddenly decide at the same time they had enough? Did the FBI intervene? Since comments are very few and far between, I have no clue as to whether the Blogspot Stat counter is broken or there has been a change in the readership.
And let me confess. It feels different to know that 6 people read what I took time to write from 600. Even though I’m writing simply to “express myself,” writing is an art form and all art is communal and complete when it is shared. I feel like the tree falling in the forest and no one is around to witness it or hear the sound it makes.
I imagine I’ll keep soldiering on and maybe just stop looking at the stats. I had a good run and maybe I should write one of those books instead.