A very good friend of mine, whose advice I can't, for the life of me, recall having ever taken, kindly informed me several months ago that blogging was "a waste of time."
"These people who write all this shit about themselves, and their stupid lives? Who the fuck wants to read that shit?"
Quite frankly, AM149238? Not fucking me. I don't want to read about it either. Who gives a shit? You work in a cubicle, your apartment's infested with roaches, you bought yourself a hooker, and you're a big fan of Patton Oswalt. Wow. Great life, dude. Lemme know when it's about to end, and I'll tune in for the last couple of minutes -- kind of like I do with Law and Order. The verdict? You suck.
Writing about it, though? Ay, there's the rub. That's the good shit. If it's my life, then it's not a waste of time. I peck away at this thing, night after night, and it changes things. I rationalize. I explore. I've unfortunately become a bit of an exhibitionist. I've learned some things. I've made friends. I've made money. Turns out I hadn't squandered a single moment up here doing this.
"What I meant is that it's a waste of my time."
So, 2005 was a year of interest. Started off will a lull, then segued seamlessly into a down period, which dragged for a bit, but then emerged into a slump, which eventually carried over into a malaise. Then came June, and people started reading. Two months later, and I'm sporting a book deal from a major publishing house. Go figure.
That happened for me because I persisted. Taught myself how to do this simply by doing it, night after night after night. I got better. Realized I had a speck of talent I hadn't ever known was there. Why? Because of you people. You read the writing. You commented on it. Told me what was good, and where I could improve. When I would disappear into the aether, you'd write to me and make me come back. When something worked, you helped spread the word, and eventually the right people noticed. I couldn't have done that on my own.
The blog did that. Without this, armed merely with a manuscript and my not-so-sparkling disposition, I'd never have caught this break in a million fucking years. Without you, the readership, this form of entree would never have existed, and I'd likely still be catching naps on the train three nights a week between jobs, and calling it my night's sleep.
I don't have to do that anymore, and I have you to thank for it. For reading. For writing. For referring. For recommending. For talking. For all the things that people have done -- people who've never met me, and probably wouldn't cotton to me if they did -- I want to use this last post of 2005 to simply, humbly, and from the bottom of my heart, say thank you.
Happy New Year, everyone. All my best for a safe and prosperous 2006.