A true eye-opener of a two day period when it comes to the writing life and other things for me.
It was on Thursday lunchtime just gone that, somewhere or other, one of the servers of virgin media that affected some web connections in the UK went down, and for a total of 36 hours I found myself cut off from certain sites, including triond. What a truly massive shock this was, because I genuinely had no idea just how big a part the site played in my life, or how lost I would feel without it.
Sad as it makes me to admit this, I have to face a stark reality about having allowed my writing life to have developed a very narrow focus, so that I made triond my main – in fact almost only – place to which I submitted work. This was because I had fallen out with those in charge at environmentalgraffiti.com over plagiarism issues, which had got me barred there.
Strangely enough, the irony is that although they continue to display my 242 posts on their site ( earning revenue I expect) they will not take them down – as I requested – and so far this month I have had over 50,000 views on EG, worth more than $50, but I will NOT get paid for them. Unfair or what, since they are my intellectual property by right?
It was to triond I turned when EG did the dirty on me, wanting to prove a point, so I have posted, in just over a year, in excess of 1400 pieces of written work, gained almost 300.000 views ans a big fan-base, along with some loyal friends, but this has come at a cost I was unaware of. So focused was I in my resolve that I lost sight of the bigger writing picture, and became obsessive about the whole thing.
I suffer quite badly from Rheumatoid Arthritis, and if you know how physically limiting this damn condition is, you begin to appreciate that the ability to write reasonably well has been a life-line for me, because it helps me to fill my days productively and not feel quite so helpless and frustrated, but this has been a double-edged sword, because I have poured nearly 100% of my writing time into triond, and ignored everything else, more or less.
The creation of my e-books, which I have continuously urged others to buy – to little effect, over the past few months, was my first real departure from being so slavishly devoted to writing for triond, but to date I have sold less than twenty copies of the books, something else that truly frustrates, disappoints and annoys me, because every review of them has been glowing, and they surely deserve a much bigger audience than they currently are getting?
The big question has to be what the hell I do next? I cannot abandon the triond family because I have put my heart and soul into it for so long now, but I have used it as a crutch and become far too reliant on it as an outlet for my writing, which it seems is good enough to do far better in the wider world, if only I can learn again to look at casting my writing net much wider, which I very obviously need to do.
Being sort of semi-disabled, with resultant blood-pressure, cholesterol and other minor cardiac issues, I do cling very tightly to the writing ability that I have, just because it offers me a freedom of expression that is no longer available to my physical self, but I have not been making the best use of it, and I truly feel that a good, hard look at where I go from here is very much called for.
I became, unwittingly, a triond addict, and I did not like the withdrawal symptoms experienced by a lack of ability to connect to it one little bit. Writing has to be much, much bigger and more important in my life than I currently allow it to be, and that might mean re-evaluating my whole approach to it. The last two days have been a shocking, and disturbing wake-up call, and I feel that I need to take notice, ecause there is life beyond triond, but I had, it seems, forgotten that.