“When you have the same audience for a long time, I think you start writing what you think fits that voice.”
c. Cliff’s Crib
He gave me that very real, and necessary nugget of insight when asking about my own writing. I’d be a liar if I said I didn’t occasionally ham it up a bit here. Sure, I’m myself here, but there are times where I engage in a bit of bravado. “All the world’s a stage,” right? I enjoy being the clever bard. I enjoy writing to entertain.
But sometimes, and this is no dis to the folks that dig what I do, I’m writing for you and not to you. Though not totally wrong, it leaves room to become patronizing – totally unacceptable. When I do that – when I prevent myself from growth – I cheat both of us with a stagnant product. I think the folks that have been loyal to me actually come to me for something just a little left of center. Not that I’m ground-breaking, but there’s a decided me-ness that I think folks like. Being liked has always scared me a little bit.
I’ve always been a bit of a fringe kid. My readership has seen a bit of an increase as of late, and I guess it sent me into a bit of a quandary. I’m…decidedly regular. I’m not an intellectual. I’m not rich or powerful. I’m just me. This little black chick that grew up inside of books and her own head, who wasn’t used to being noticed. So there’s a part of me that isn’t quite sure what people are looking for when they come here. Am I supposed to be profound? Funny? How vulnerable can I be? Will it be off-putting and people won’t come back?
When I write something that is enjoyed, there is a pressure to make lightening strike again, and I can get a little stuck. I want folks to enjoy what they read – to come here with the knowledge that what they read will be fresh, insightful and real, even if unpopular. The only voice I can give with any honesty is my own, and that’s the only voice that I will give. Don’t be afraid to disagree with me. I want to hear you.
This is my blog.
But you are always welcome here.