Reflecting On 8 Years

Eight years ago today, I started this blog. Eight years. Whoa.

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I remember the day I started to write. I was challenged by a college professor in my creative writing class to not just write for myself, but to write so that others could read it.  (I tended to be overly shy when it came to sharing my work, partly for fear of public speaking and partly for fear that I just wasn’t a good writer. I have always loved to write, but I feared that if people didn’t like my writing or it was determined to be “not good enough”, then I would have to stop). 

She suggested starting a blog and if I’m being honest, I hated the idea (insert that fear, here). Being the overly competitive person that I am, however, I didn’t back down from a challenge.

Back in 2009 when I started, the blogging realm was beginning to heat up, becoming an increasing part of our mainstream culture, yet still only widely used by media outlets. This blog originally started as many others did, as an extension of my journal or diary, a way to share thoughts and poetry I scribbled down at the end of my day. There wasn’t much editing or comprising, it was my words-raw and real, a way to show my professor that I wasn’t afraid to let others read my writing. Since then, the atmosphere of the blogging world has changed drastically. Now not only are media outlets using blogging as a way of digital marketing, many people, like myself, are using blogs as a way to share their words, get their voice heard or increase their own brand recognition.

Blogging has changed the scope of how we write and what we write about. Blogs allow us to relate, to encourage, to share and to support. We can write wherever our heart takes us. This blog has definitely seen a progression and has taken many different directions. My writing has evolved from the raw and uncensored to thoughtful and comprised. Whereas it started as creative writing, it has become more tangible and pragmatic. And it turned out, that it didn’t matter if I was the best writer in the world. I could still write about topics that I found interesting or important and those that wanted to read them, could. I had the opportunity to enjoy writing without the fear of “not being good enough”.

Regardless of what I am writing, through it all, I have thoroughly enjoyed sharing pieces of my life and my words with the rest of you.

The name has changed a few times, the topics are constantly changing, but one thing that has stayed consistent is the voice. The voice has always been mine.

Thank you to my followers, my friends, my family and all those who have encouraged me to keep writing. This blog may not be a household name, or even read by more than ten people at a time, but I love it. It has become so much more than winning a challenge, it has become a lifestyle. I have loved getting outside my comfort zone and continuing to contribute my words and my voice for the past eight years.

Here’s to the next eight.

Cheers!

love,
American Beautiful

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