I am really, really good at coming up with reasons why I shouldn't start a blog, even though I have been thinking about doing so for years. For example:
- I haven't written in years, therefore, I must be terrible at it.
- My writer colleagues will discover my terrible writing and fire me. I will agree with their decision because they are brilliant.
- Do people still blog? Or is everyone just an Instagram model now?
- I will never be an Instagram model.
- I don't have a fancy camera. I have an iPhone 5S for goodness' sake. Isn't it required to have a fancy camera to start a blog?
- I want to write about things that make me happy: cooking, baking, crafts, arts, and travel. "Lifestyle," they call it. But I don't think my "lifestyle" is that desirable. Above average, maybe (living in New York City doing my dream job for the past three years), but still a struggle (getting by in New York City on a non-profit salary.) My lifestyle is probably fine but falls short of what I imagine Jefferey Garten's is like, or that of a golden retriever puppy belonging to a rich family.
- Aren't "lifestyle bloggers" kind of perfect and annoying?
I am not good at turning off my inner critic. Believing in yourself is difficult! But for the first time in a long time, I don't just want to write—I need to write. Post-election despair has hit me hard and in order to cope, I'm trying to put my nervous energy into things that make me happy. If we're all living in a dystopian universe anyways, I might as well do what I want while I can.
Plus, if every single cast member of The Bachelor can have a blog, then I can totally do it. If a small-town aesthetician with a dream can do it, why not me? Who said The Bachelor wasn't empowering for women?
Maybe I've listened to the Hamilton soundtrack too many times, but I can't get this line out of my head: How do you write like tomorrow won't arrive? / How do you write like you need it to survive? Perhaps my writing will be as terrible or annoying as I fear, but it's something I need to do. These days, I'm feeling like I have very little to lose—and that's enough to tell my inner critic to shut up. It's my turn to speak.