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Friday, February 18, 2011

A Blogger's Dilemna or What am I Trying to Say?

I haven't been blogging regularly because, well, I'm paralyzed with fear that my blog will go astray.

All the experts say your blog has to have a theme, and that makes sense. I go to Buns in My Oven because I want great recipes. I go to Newbie's Guide To Publishing because I want great advice about publishing, or self-publishing, as that seems to be the hot topic right now.

But isn't defining your blog a bit like asking Who am I? To my father, I'm Jacqueline (except when he's irritated, and then I'm Jacqueline Marie.) To most of my family, I'm Jack. Except for my husband. He calls me Jackie and all sorts of nicknames that are none of your business. And to Buster the Wonderdog, I'm Woof.

See? I have so many identities, and that's just my name!

Blogging is by it's nature sharing. So what do I want to share with you?

I love to cook. Actually, I love food. Even as I write, I'm baking brownies for the Women's Guild meeting tonight. When I run into something fantastic, I want to share, but I don't want to write a food blog. I'm not good enough. I defer to Buns in My Oven's Karly. (Karly, you are a goddess!)

I'm Catholic. Really, I'm one of those "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" kind of old-school Catholics, but one of my sleuths is a Catholic priest. He's also and Iraqi war vet and former police chaplain. After losing his temper all over a nasty criminal, he's relocated to teach Religious Ed at an all-girl high school. Talk about penance. I mean it. I was a teenage girl. We're brutal.

I'm writing a Pet Psychic mystery, and I love all things dogs (though I certainly would never discriminate against other pets.) I've had training nightmares with my 80 pound mutt, and sharing what works for me could be helpful to others. Or fun. I had an article in Fido Friendly Magazine last April about using a pet psychic to train your pet that was based on my experiences.

My Wilder Women mysteries focus on family. I have a hu-u-u-u-ge extended family with lots of oddities, like the uncle with nine lives and the grandfather who carried a nifty combo walking stick/blade that he got from Hell's Angles. But isn't telling their secrets just rude?

My character Evan Miller is a crime reporter. I could talk about crime, but then I'd have to bury my depressed head under my pillow and go to sleep.

As a writer, I have lots of things I can say about the writing process. I can run interviews with other writers. I can review books. But there are so many other sites out there doing the same thing. Is there anything special about mine?

I like positive things. You can attribute that to my inner rebel. There are so many articles and people intent on dragging us down. Just look at the magazine covers at the checkout stand. Tragedy! Separated! Destroyed! Just a few of the cover story titles this week. Well, it's not going to happen. Not on my watch. (Did you have a flash of All the Good Men and an urge to salute? Me too.)

I don't live in the past, but I appreciate the different mindset. For example, while Hitler decimated entire populations, Charlie Chaplain came out with The Great Dictator. The same year as His Girl Friday and Philadelphia Story. No wallowing. No whining.

Rallying. Providing Humor. Adversity bringing out one's best. How unbelievably admirable. How can I even approach that subject, except to say I wish I belonged to a different generation? Although, that does bring on all sorts of dilemmas with my parents and my husband.

Finally, does anyone care about what I have to say? It's so Me, Me, Me. And I do think people share way too much these days. I'm going to have to think about this.

If you have an opinion, I'd love to hear it. Do you only visit blogs when they have a specific purpose? Do you drop by various blogs because you like the title of a particular post?