Writers, Friends and Confidants
I discovered a whole bunch of “pending” comments from bygone posts the other day. I don’t know why they weren’t brought to my attention via email as they usually are, but somehow they fell through the cracks. A few were from a really long time ago and my heart just sank at the thought of my never having replied.
I try to reply to every reader who leaves a comment – even if it’s just to say thank you. Writing is a solitary business, and it’s no exaggeration to say that I feel a tremendous sense of intimacy with the people who read this blog – especially those who comment regularly. Given that I tend write about pretty big topics – love, faith, death, etc., there is an implied trust that’s very special to me.
But it’s about so much more than simply saying thanks for reading. The comments I tend to get can be terribly intimate in nature, and sound much more like secrets from a close friend, a confidant. Some of my reader’s stories have made me gasp, my heart skip a beat.
I’ve had a mother write to me about the child she lost in childbirth – the utter devastation of that event made bearable by crazy moments of levity. Like when her family broke into her hospital room at 3:00 am and an impromptu party ensued. Yes, even after the death of an infant. Sometimes our best times are during our worst, and I like to celebrate that on COLD.
Readers tell me about the haunted house they live in, and the way the spirits whisper for them not to be afraid. It is such a privilege to be privy to a virtual stranger’s greatest fears, heartbreaks, most gushing stories of romance, confused tears, anger, yearning, loneliness. Private, beautiful stories that honor the special relationship between a writer and her readers. That transcend the page. It is the most fulfilling part of doing what I do, and it means a lot to me that so many of you are willing to share with me parts of your own journeys.
Taking to heart that writing is less about the stories we tell than it is about how we make people feel when they’re reading them, I do my best to make Cold a place where I think before I speak, which my friends will tell you is not always my inclination.
I guess that’s the nature of the beast.
Most of us writers strive to be better on paper than we actually are, often in hopes of becoming more of that person who lurks within us, and is a very large part of us, but lives in sweet perfection only on the page. Writers are like preachers that way.
And this wife, mother, writer, friend, and preacher of magic, I hope, is enormously grateful to any and all of you who stop by here. The gift of your time is nearly as great as the gift of your confidence.
And since I’m saying thanks, I owe huge debt of it to WordPress and WordPress editor Cheri Lucas Rowlands for selecting Cold as a recommended blog in the “Writing and Blogging” category as well. Out of the fifty million blogs you host, it’s a huge honor to be one of the few you single out. Especially since Cold is in such great company with blogs like Writing Through the Fog, Strong Language, Chicago Literati, Kristin Lamb’s Blog, Drinkers with Writing Problems and a couple of dozen more great blogs that I urge readers to check out here:
WordPress offers a wonderful tapestry of meaning, humor, sincerity, beauty, irony and imagination. I’m happy I made it my home.
Happy Easter to those of you who celebrate and just happiness to those of you who don’t. Until next time…