It’s hard work trying to come up with something you think is worth saying on a weekly basis. Before I ever started posting my blog, I wrote ten articles so that I had a nice two and a half month backlog of material. I figured that was a comfortable cushion that would take the pressure off and I could leisurely write a new article every week or two while staying ahead of the curve. Right. Within three and a half months, I was dead even. I wound up writing most of my articles from May until the present time on the Monday night before I was due to post them on Tuesday morning. On occasion, I actually wrote them on Tuesday morning. Sometimes I had an idea all week long but just didn’t get around to writing about it until the last minute. Sometimes I didn’t have a clue as to what I would write about until I sat down at my keyboard. Sometimes I didn’t know how I would manage to squeeze out 800 words about my chosen topic. Sometimes I didn’t know how I could limit it to 800 words when there seemed to be so much more to say.
After doing this for a year, I’ve come away with a new-found respect for all those individuals who write weekly columns. I always loved Dave Barry’s work but for a long time, I resented him for retiring. Now I can’t imagine how he did it so well for so long. In case you didn’t know it, writing is hard work, folks. If you don’t believe me, try doing it. For four weeks, set a deadline for yourself and try to write 800 words about something that you think is meaningful. It’s not easy! It’s also good for you.
I hope that some of the articles I wrote made you smile or brought a tear to your eye. On the humorous side, I was partial to “Climate Change” (my marriage survived that one!) and “Snakes” (my friendship with Sheriff Jim Wilson survived that one). Probably my favorite article that I wrote was on the “Importance of Dogs.” I ran it a second time just a couple of weeks ago when I had been too sick to come up with anything new and my timing couldn’t have been more perfect. Shortly after that, Pope Francis confirmed what most of us have always known…all dogs go to heaven. I wonder if he read my blog? You’d think he would have left a comment. He is a pretty busy guy though so I guess I’ll forgive him. Since he seems to be all about tolerance and forgiveness, I guess it’s only fair that I extend the same courtesy to him.
It’s also my hope that perhaps something I wrote about made you stop and think, and perhaps even consider something from a different perspective. I would like to believe that my blog articles were just a part of a dialogue with you, the readers. We need more dialogue. We have a great deal to learn from each other. These days, it seems to me that too many people act like they already know everything. Knowing all the answers gets in the way of learning anything new. Many years of marriage has made it clear to me that I don’t have all the answers. Heck, I’m still trying to get clear on the questions.
I’m going to take a break from this blog to re-charge my batteries and get this next CD project completed. I don’t know when or even if I’ll get back to doing this on a regular basis. I do know that it has been a positive experience for me, sharpening my writing skills and forcing me to pay attention and consider things that I think matter. I hope you’ve enjoyed the experience as well. I was pleased and honored to have two of my blog articles published. “Old Blevins” was included in the Western Music Associations magazine, the Western Way and my article on 9/11, “Let’s Roll,” was featured in the Albuquerque Journal this year on September 11th. If I get the energy and get organized (two mighty big Ifs!), I might actually compile these essays into a book. You never know. If you came late to the party and want to catch up, you can find all of my blogs at http://jimjonesmusic.tumblr.com/