Originally published as Why I Write - Revisited Thursday, January 26, 2010
by Fred Brill
As time goes by, our goals and objectives are bound to evolve.
Mine certainly have.
I still long to strive to reach my potential as an IT professional. That goal remains unchanged. And I'm not done yet. My commitment is strong.
In fact, tomorrow I have my performance review first thing in the morning. So I have spent the evening with the standard form – answering the questions to the best of my ability – unbiased but still intentionally putting my best foot forward.
That's how it works, right?
But as I reached the exercise of examining my goals and objectives, my mind started to wander.
And I went through some of my favorite headstuffing posts – and I started once again to reconsider my goals and objectives for headstuffing.
Back in April of 2008, I wrote a post called "Why I Write". I liked this post so much that I decided to put a link on the side bar under my profile – and use that as my statement to the world … my justification if you will … why headstuffing exists.
But that was almost two years ago.
And this performance review has me in mind of reflection.
So why do I write headstuffing now in 2010?
I still stand behind my original mission statement that I am writing these stories about our life for my daughters so "they can remember us as we are now, for as long as I keep writing these stories – as long as I keep documenting our life – and they will be use these stories to keep us alive in their hearts".
But there is more now.
No, not to make money off my Google Ads. I still have yet to see a penny from my Google Ads.
I have come to realize that I really enjoy writing stories that touch people. That inspire people. That make people laugh and cry.
If I can make you laugh and think at the same time, I have reached my objective with my story.
I'd just as soon you not cry. There is enough in the world to make a person cry. I don't want to add to it.
And my goal to strive for? To achieve should I consistently meet my writing objectives of touching you with laughter and thought?
I want to do this for a living … my retirement profession.
After I am done with the IT profession, or after the IT profession is done with me.
I want to write stories like the sideline columns my favorite author and hero Lewis Grizzard used to write.
People used to pay for the whole Atlanta Constitution just to read Lewis Grizzard's column – running down the left side of an inside page in the front section – about an inch wide the length of the page. And then leave the paper for the next person to pick up – likely only to read Grizzard's column as well.
A grandiose goal to be sure.
But we gotta dream. And why not make a goal out of dream.
But I don't charge for headstuffing. It's just a blog.
And take it from me, if you go telling people that you write a blog, the eyes roll back in their head, and you can see your credibility fall from right off the edge of the world by the smirk of the smile on their face.
But to me, headstuffing isn't a blog.
It's a collection of stories. My stories.
I consider headstuffing being referred to as a blog is an insult. Even though you and I both know that a web site with posts archived like this is really just … choke … a blog.
But I want these stories to be read. I hope that these stories are enjoyed. And I desperately want the writing that goes into these stories to be respected.
Would it be great to make a living off these stories? Of course it would be.
But for right now, this is the venue that I have to share with you.
And I do love headstuffing. It is my passion.
But it's also my legacy – for my little girls to really know their Daddy and remember our family by.
And it's my only way to share with the world what I have to offer.
All I have to offer.
Google Ads? I still don't need no stinking Google Ads!
But I do love your comments. And I do love your feedback.
So since I'm sharing with you, why not share a bit back with me by sharing your opinion by leaving a comment.
And your still welcome to click a Google Ad or two while you're here.
Originally published as Why I Write on Wednesday, April 30, 2008
by Fred Brill
The other day I received an email from an old friend.
I was so excited to hear from this person, until I read his email. He was basically chewing me out for what he was reading here in my HeadStuffing posts.
"You're all over the place" … "I never know what to expect as your topic" … "you're letting a great opportunity slip by" … "You can't possibly be retaining any decent level of readership!"
Then he went on to tell me that I could be making a fortune in Google Ads income. Quite frankly I have never received a penny from my Google Ads yet. I don't care if I ever do.
That's not why I am here.
"Then why are you wasting all your time with this blog site, Fred?" he responded in his next email. And I realized that he didn't get it.
I like to write.
Some professional writers have told me that if they were not getting paid for writing, they would do it for free. I just skipped the part about getting paid and jumped right to the part about loving to do it for free.
I like to tell stories. And the best stories I can tell anyone are the stories about things that I know about. Stories about things that have happened to me or to those I care about. Stories like the Tale of Two Grandmas, or Raymond and the Seven Dancing Princesses. Or topics that frustrate me, like my Detroit Tigers going oh-for-seven to start the season. Or the fact the school bus won't let my kids ride the bus when it picks others up on my front yard. Or stories about those in my family who have passed away and I miss very much. Stories about leaving the bliss of the sunny south to live my life in the great white north. And then there are those topics about the things my Dad taught me.
If I don't get these stories out of my head, my head would be so stuffed it would blow up. That's where the title HeadStuffing comes from.
And I have a nice collection of them now.
And what will I do with this collection? Well, I have toyed with the idea of putting them all between the covers of a book. But what I really want to do with them is keep them for my little girls.
My girls are seven and five years old right now. Okay, Ashley-Rae, you're five and three-quarters. Darlene and I started this little family a bit late in life. There will be a day when they are young adults when Darlene or myself won't be around anymore. My hope is that they can remember us as we are now, for as long as I keep writing these stories – as long as I keep documenting our life – and they will be use these stories to keep us alive in their hearts.
Google Ads money? I don't need no stinking Google Ads money!
Now that being said, I do enjoy looking at the statistics of readers that come to HeadStuffing and read my pages. It is really quite awesome to see readers coming to read from every continent and almost every country on this fair blue planet of ours.
And some really great feedback has inspired such things as providing an easy way to subscribe to receive HeadStuffing by RSS feeds. And some other really great feedback has enticed me to consider writing something a bit more complete like a book. I have heard this even from professional writers.
So you never know.
Before I had HeadStuffing to write, I would get in trouble constantly at work. My emails in some cases were blog posts. Like when I answered a question from a high ranking government official about the adjudication processing our 01 COBOL server would perform by walking them through the amazing qualities of the "oooohhh-wan server". The government official enjoyed the email, but my bosses who were copied on his reply were not too impressed with my liberties. Other times, in emails explaining to stakeholders that I can write any design they want, because it's only pictures and words. It's up to the programmers to code what I describe, and quite often they don't read my designs. That didn't go over to well either, no matter how light I thought my humor was, the room was full of critics. Critics who could put a stop-payment on my paycheck with a phone call.
So I started writing HeadStuffing. And because I originally started writing because of the inspiration of a long since deceased sports writer named Lewis Grizzard, I have adopted my best impression of his writing voice as my own.
Many years ago there used to be this commercial on late night TV by a guy trying to sell his get-rich scheme.
"By placing a hundreds of tiny little ads in newspapers all over the country …. " it would start. The only guy his scheme made rich was him.
Now I see advertisements all over the internet on how to make six-figure incomes from blogging. And you know what they're doing? "By placing hundreds of tiny little ads …"
So thank you for reading HeadStuffing. If you like something I have written, please leave a comment or drop me a note to let me know. But if you don't – please understand why I am here.
And click one of those tiny little ads on your way out.