I don’t know if you missed it, but March 30th was World Backup Day. I didn’t set much store by the news at first, because it came in an email from my backup service, and I figured they made it up, but then I got the very same news from a whole other service, so I went ahead and had some cake just in case. Both outfits have custody of some of my money and I don’t know if their services are redundant or if they do anything at all, but when money periodically disappears from my account and in their direction, I do feel sort of backed up. In honor of World Backup Day I was invited to get all my friends backed up also. I’m really not sure how such an overture will be received.
Anyway, I trust they have everything I have ever written, in some form, and I further believe that if I ever need it back, someone will help me figure out how to crowbar it out of them.
I also have a little box the size of a pocket flask that I trust has slurped up everything I have ever written, because I occasionally hook it up to my laptop. I really don’t know for sure, but it does blink at me in an encouraging manner.
Everything I have ever written is a whole, whole lot. I have had an unusual trajectory as a writer. In grade school I felt strongly I was a writer even though I hardly wrote anything and what I did write was truly, truly wretched. Really awful. My term papers were solid and my competence in the essay portions of tests made up for my frequently not knowing what I was talking about. I once won a DAR Excellence in History award in a contest that required us to rattle off an essay on the spot. The teacher conducting the test told me that it was clear I didn’t know anything about the Civil War but nobody else could string two words together.
In a moment of truth in my teens, I apparently recognized I was a derivative, affected writer with nothing to say and I quit. For forty years. But the stuff has been firehosing out of me ever since.
Since I retired I’ve written approximately 1500 blogposts at an average of about 700 words per. I’ve written six novels and two other books. At the going rate per written word, I’ve earned about $19.94. There’s no money in it. There’s money out of it.
But there is help available. I get a dozen emails a day from people who would like to write a guest post for me. The first, second, and tenth of these I actually opened read “Howdy! I always learn so much from your insert blog name here. So I thought I’d reach out and see if you’d be interested in my guest blog post about fifteen surprising uses for rehydrated fewmets, or how to touch up your locks using vinegar, baking soda, duct tape, and an ordinary shower cap.”
I don’t open them anymore. The little bits that peek out of my inbox all start out “I’m reaching out to” and “Have you had a chance to look over” and “I’m circling back to see if you” and here’s the thing: none of my friends’ emails start out that way.
I’m foggy on why someone would want to horn in on my blog. Evidently, though, it is all about getting backlinks and SEO traffic and significantly increasing my audience, but I always thought the best way to get an audience was to write stuff worth reading. I still think that. There’s no evidence for it whatsoever; my readership is faithful but tiny. I’m not really doing anything right, marketwise, except maybe that one thing.
This is a solo gig. I don’t want guest posts. I’d have to put out the fluffy towels and clean up the comment section afterwards. And I can’t be counted on to keep that up. Sooner or later someone will flip the pillow and find rehydrated fewmets. If I’m going to be embarrassed, I’d rather have only myself to blame.